The best wheel clamps

Thankfully coming without a fixed penalty notice, one of these wheel clamps will keep your car safe from thieves

A wheel clamp attached to a car

by Ryan Gilmore |

Who remembers the rouge clampers that prowled car parks in the early 2000s, praying on little old ladies whose Rover 25 had exceeded its Pay and Display time slot by 30 seconds? Effectively seizing cars with a wheel clamp and demanding exorbitant amounts of cash to release them.

That gave car clamps a bad reputation, even though they are a great deterrent against theft. If these rogue clampers were able to totally immobilise a car, then so can you to keep thieves at bay. Stick one of these over your wheels and there is almost no way a car thief will be going far with your ride without the aid of some serious (and loud) power tools.

We've looked at the best wheel clamps on the market currently, so you can leave your car safe in the knowledge it isn't going anywhere.

What you need to know about wheel clamps:

What are the different types of wheel clamp?

Most car-based wheel clamps will clamp to the tyre to effectively prevent the car from moving, these are known as tyre clamps. Some caravan clamps bolt directly to the axle, but these aren't ever found on cars.

Ideally, you'll be wanting a clamp that also covers your wheel nuts, but this isn't essential. It will, however, give you better peace of mind (it makes it harder for a would-be thief to remove the clamped wheel and steal your car - ridiculous I know, but never underestimate someone's determination).

What features will you want from a good wheel clamp?

Aside from the wheel nut protection, you'll be wanting rubber pads or soft jaws on your clamp to avoid ugly scratches all over your wheels.

Weather-protection is a must if you're leaving your car outside.

The ultimate feature is Sold Secure approval, independent testing to prove that the wheel clamp is as safe as possible.

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