When it comes to storing your bike, you need to strike a balance between making the most of the space you have and protecting your bike and the comforts of your home. However, this is easier said than done because there are so many storage options, and what works for one homeowner might not be ideal for everyone.
Here are the 3 best methods to store your bike at home:
- Store the bike on a floor rack.
- Mount the bike on a wall.
- Hoist the bike on a ceiling.
These methods can also be used to store bikes in the winter, but special precautions must be taken to protect your bike. Read for an insightful discussion as I outline the different storage options in each category, when they’re ideal, the necessary purchases, and so much more.
1. Store the Bike on a Floor Rack
Floor racks are the closest option to a kickstand in terms of simplicity. Installing one is as simple as chucking them on the floor, and removing them is equally easy. This makes a floor rack a particularly ideal storage option if you often change your residence and want a storage option that won’t take too much work to move and set up.
And while floor racks are close to a kickstand in terms of simplicity, they’re better at keeping your bike upright. In other words, it’ll take much more effort to topple over a bike held in a floor rack than a kickstand.
Floor racks are also user-friendly. Storing and accessing the bike is easier with a floor rack than any other storage option, making it ideal for homes with kids.
Despite these advantages, floor racks come with their fair share of drawbacks. They take up a significant amount of space on your floor, which can be a deal-breaker if space is an issue in your home.
Additionally, some floor racks can’t store bikes with disc brakes or wheels smaller than 20 in (50.8 cm). And while they’re more stable than kickstands, they don’t compare well with other storage options in this regard.
Floor racks come in two broad categories:
Generic Metal Floor Racks
These are types of rocks commonly found in schools. They’re usually big and designed to hold many bikes simultaneously. That means they’ll take up more space than other types of floor racks, making them an ideal option for use in yards, garages, or other parts of your home where space isn’t an issue.
Metal floor racks come in different types and prices, and the ideal purchase depends on your needs – how many bikes you’re looking to store, whether they have similar wheel sizes, and how much you’re willing to spend.
If you’re looking for a metal rack to hold different bikes for the whole family, consider the affordable but functional rack such as the Simple Houseware Bike Stand (available on Amazon.com).
You get a rack that can hold up to five bikes at once. It’s compatible with 12 to 26 in (30.48 to 66.04 cm) bikes, and the wheel holder width is expandable from 2.5 to 3.5 in (6.35 to 8.89 cm), making it a versatile storage option for kids and adult bikes.
The only drawback to this cost-effective storage solution is its durability. The alloy steel construction may be prone to bending, especially if you store your bike in windy outdoors or aren’t gentle with it.
If durability is a priority, consider the Delta Cycle Rack (available on Amazon.com). It comes with industrial-grade steel construction for strength and durability, as well as a powder-coated, sleek-looking surface that fits in most interior decors.
It’s also worth noting that the Delta Cycle Rack is fully adjustable, allowing you to infinitely adjust it for a custom fit on any wheel width size. However, it can only accommodate one bike at a time.
If you need to store more bikes while still enjoying the Delta’s durability and adjustability, purchase the Delta Rack Connectors (available on Amazon.com). These connectors will join up to five racks.
Parking Rack Stands
The main difference between these and metal racks is that with a parking rack stand, you don’t need to lift your bike to store it. Instead, you roll its wheel onto the front holder, which then tilts and lifts the bike into the rack.
This extra bit of functionality comes in handy when you have a heavy bike. It’s also great for kids and pretty much anyone else who finds it hard to get their bike off the floor.
It’s also worth mentioning that the bike is more stable with this type of floor storage because the wheel sits deeper inside the rack. This is particularly handy if you store your bike in a spot that’s accessible to kids and pets because it minimizes their chances of tipping over the bike and potentially damaging it or hurting themselves.
Which parking rack stand to buy?
The BIKE HAND Floor Type Parking Rack Stand (available on Amazon.com) would make a solid purchase. It’s reasonably priced, but this is far from its main selling point. That would be its stability.
While many other similar stands have one or two “contact points” (AKA where the stand holds onto the tires), this one has three to provide extra stability. There’s also the fact that the wheel holder is significantly deeper than other stands, further adding to this storage option’s stability.
2. Mount the Bike on a Wall
Mounting your bike on a wall is a great option when your space is too small to accommodate a floor rack. The bike rests against the wall, leaving more floor space for other things like furniture.
Some wall storage options lean against the wall (as opposed to being fixed into the wall), which is great for walls that can’t handle drilling/screwing and in rented apartments where lease agreements prohibit certain wall fixtures.
And if you’re deeply passionate about biking, a wall mount can be a pretty good way to show off your bike as a work of art. With some wall mounts, you can even use your bike as an indoor space divider!
But as with any other storage option, wall mounts come with a few drawbacks, first on that list being the need for a sturdy wall that can support your bike’s weight or that of several bikes if need be. There’s also the fact that your lease agreement might restrict what you can do to your walls, limiting you to storage options that only lean against the wall.
And depending on the type of storage you use, wall mounts can be somewhat inconvenient, too, especially when lifting the bike is involved. So if you have a very heavy bike or have kids that will need to stow away their bikes on their own, you’ll need to be careful with the type of wall mount you choose.
Speaking of types, wall bike storages come in different categories. Let’s review each of these in greater detail:
Wall hooks and hangers are pretty self-explanatory; you install a hook or hanger on your wall and store your bike on it.
This can be an ideal option for those looking for a simple and easy way to store one or two bikes on their wall without spending a lot of money. Using a hook or a hanger to mount your bike on the wall can also be a great way to showcase it as a piece of art and add some personality to your space.
Should you choose this wall storage option, consider the Auwey Wall Mount Bike Hook (available on Amazon.com). It folds onto the wall to save space when not in use and comes with a rubber coating to protect your bike’s paint job from scratches. It’s also noteworthy that a safety locking mechanism is included to prevent accidental release.
Horizontal Bike Stands/Racks
Horizontal bike stands hold your bike parallel to the ground. Some need to be screwed onto the wall, while others are free-standing racks that lean against a wall.
Many bikers prefer free-standing horizontal racks because they’re easy to set up such as the Delta Cycle Free Standing Rack (available on Amazon.com). To set this up, you only need to piece it together, lean it against a wall, and you’re all set.
The great thing about most free-standing bicycle racks is that they’re usually adjustable, allowing the user to configure it to support different sized bikes. So, whether you’re a mountain biker or a BMXer, this bicycle rack could work for you.
Books-and-a-Bike Storage Shelves
Remember when I talked about using your bike as a creative room divider? This is one way to do it.
A Books-and-a-Bike storage shelf is one of the most innovative ways to complement your interiors while creating storage space for your bike. It’s essentially a shelf with space for your bike and extra storage compartments for other items such as your helmet and shoes.
This is an ideal storage option for those with limited space, such as a studio apartment. Unfortunately, this is a new concept so this type of storage option isn’t yet available on Amazon. However, you can have them custom-made. For inspiration on what that should look like, check out Post Fossils Shoes Books and a Bike Shelf.
Vertical Wall Racks
Vertical wall racks come in handy when you have limited wall space. Storing a bike using one of these involves lifting the front wheel (picture someone doing a wheelie) and hanging the bike such that its rear part faces downward.
Since they require less space than floor racks and horizontal wall racks, vertical racks are the most efficient way to store many bikes when both wall and floor space is limited. Additionally, vertical wall racks are generally compatible with more wheel sizes than their horizontal counterparts, making them an ideal wall storage option for families.
It’s also easier to remove and hang a bike on a vertical wall rack because you only need to lift the front wheel (as opposed to lifting the entire bike when dealing with a horizontal wall rack).
On the flip side, bikes stored on vertical wall racks typically stick out into your indoor space. So while using this type of wall rack to store your bike requires less wall space and zero floor space, it does take up more room space than floor and horizontal wall storage options.
Buying a Vertical Wall Rack
If you choose to use a vertical wall rack to store your bike, you’ll want to choose an option that makes lifting easier, especially if you have children that use the rack. Balancing the bike on the rear wheel can be tricky, but some bike racks make it easy for you.
Where to find such a rack?
Check out the Bike Nook Bicycle Stand (available on Amazon.com). With this vertical bike storage option, you only need to get the front wheel in position and then lift the bike so that it stands.
Here’s a YouTube video demonstration to give you a better idea of how it works:
3. Hoist the Bike on a Ceiling
Rounding up our list of home bike storage options is ceiling storage. This is ideal when you have limited floor, wall, and room space because it allows you to utilize the space above your head as bike storage. This type of storage is perfect for a basement or garage.
Out of all of the three storage options we’ve covered, this is the most space-efficient. It also doesn’t discriminate on bike wheel sizes because the pulley systems and tracks used to hoist the bike on the ceiling usually hold it by its handlebars and seat. This makes it an ideal storage option for most bikers, no matter which type of bike they use.
On the flip side, ceiling racks are more challenging to install. They also require a pretty high ceiling and are next to impossible to use for kids. And even for adult bikers, it takes longer to access and hang the bike, so this isn’t an ideal storage option for bikes you use regularly.
However, the time it takes to hoist the bike is usually a good tradeoff when you consider the amount of space you’ll save.
The Bike Hoist Lift for Garage (available on Amazon.com) ticks this all-important box, can handle up to 45 kg (100 lbs), and can lift bikes up to 3 meters (10 feet) high.
How To Store Your Bike for the Winter
You can always use floor racks, wall mounts, and ceiling racks to store your bike all year round. But when stowing your bike away for the winter, you need a bit of extra preparation to protect your bike from damage. Don’t just set it up and forget about it. Be proactive to ensure that your bike stays in its best condition year round.
Here are the steps y
Here are the steps you need to do before putting away your bike for the coldest time of the year:
- Clean the entire bike, including the wheel rims, chain, spokes, and frame.
- Wax the frame and lube up the chain to prevent rust.
- Apply oil to the derailleurs pivot points.
- If there are any dings in your bike’s paint job, coat them with nail polish to prevent rust.
- Lube the seat post and put it back in place.
During winter, here are some tips you’ll want to do to keep your stored bike in shape:
- Keep the bike indoors—storing it outdoors in the elements is practically asking for damage.
- Dust off the bike every month or so.
- Pump and spin the tires every sixty days.
- If your bike has rechargeable batteries, consult the manufacturer’s manual for care tips when the bike is stored for a long time.