Bicycles offer many benefits, including an alternative to gas-powered transportation, a way to stay in shape and a way to explore the outdoors. However, most homes don't have extra storage for bicycles, and leaving your bicycle outside exposes it to the elements and potential theft or damage. Fortunately, the more bicycles become popular, the more storage options are created. Regardless of how much space you have, there is a bicycle storage solution.
This is one of the oldest and cheapest bicycle storage solutions. Simply buy a large steel hook (many are sold specifically for bicycle storage and are coated in rubber) and screw it into a ceiling beam. More advanced, specialized versions of this product are available with a contact plate to keep the hanging wheel from marking up the wall. Pros of this storage option include a very narrow storage profile, low cost and ease of installation. Cons include the awkwardness of lifting and hanging your bike and having to put a deep hole in the ceiling of your home or apartment.
Storage racks hold between one and four bicycles on a wall-mounted rack. These adjust to fit the height of the storage space and larger racks stagger the stored bicycles as a space-saving measure. These require some installation, usually mounting to a single wall stud with the use of a screwdriver. Specialty models also often include shelves and extra hooks and space for equipment such as helmets, bags and bicycle pumps. Pros of this option include an excellent use of space, good selection, and sturdy construction. Cons include permanent installation and high average cost.
Free-Standing Storage Racks
These storage racks offer a modified version of a mounted storage rack, holding one or two bikes against a wall, but use gravity and design to stay in place. This makes both the cost lower and enables you to avoid drilling holes in a wall. Construction is tool-free and simple. Pros include lower price and ease of installation. As a con, these racks, while easy to lift and use, are not as sturdy as the permanently installed models, so they should not be used with crowded spaces.
A new storage solution, ceiling hoists are inexpensive, convenient and very easy to install. A series of small pulleys is mounted in the ceiling, and the bike is simply raised out of the way until you next need it. As a storage option, it is much more convenient than a ceiling hook and cheaper than storage racks. Particularly if you have a quiet corner or high ceilings, this option offers a good solution at a very reasonable cost. Pros include the low cost, low shipping weight and flexibility, as this system can be used to hold other outdoor equipment, like a kayak. Cons include a more slightly involved installation process and the chance that your bike, while raised, may still get in the way.