According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, thieves working in groups can make off with your rims in a matter of minutes. Here are four ways to help prevent your wheels from being stolen, as advised by the NICB and the Tire Industry Association:
1. Use Wheel Locks
Wheel locks install in place of your car’s lug nuts. They are similar to a lug nut (and sometimes indistinguishable) but require a special anti-theft tool (key) for installation and removal that comes with the set. Wheel locks are virtually impossible to remove. Wheel locks leave just enough room for the required key to fit around them and don't leave any space for a prying tool.
2. Use a Car Alarm
If you buy an anti-theft car alarm, opt for an advanced one. These types of alarms can detect if the vehicle gets titled and lifted off of the ground. More advanced alarms also come equipped with wheel sensors that detect if the wheels get tampered with.
3. Park in High-Traffic Areas
It is recommended that all cars be parked in a garage; however, not everyone has access to one. If you don't have garage, try to find parking on busier streets. These streets should have a greater traffic and pedestrian presence, as well as be more lit at night. This will easily deter criminals because they prefer to work at night and with the confidence that no one will walk by. If possible, park in direct view of surveillance cameras to increase safety measures.
4. Park Close To The Curb
Park as close as possible to the curb to deter would-be thieves. Lifting a car with a jack requires space. This means thieves are less likely to attempt a theft if the proximity to the curb is too tight. Turning the steering wheel toward the curb when parking will also make the wheels harder to remove. Be careful not to scrape your tires and rims on the curb. Should you scrape your rims on the curb, please read this article on repairs.