[Full Guide] How to Repair & Maintain Vending Machine?
If you want to reach out to the public directly to sell your products like drinks, food, snacks, etc, there is no better alternative to the vending machine. You can set up vending machines in the most crowded places and interested customers can get your products instantly from the vending machine. However, there are times when vending machines can break down and this will affect your sale as well as brand value.
Therefore, vending machine repair service becomes mandatory when you are dealing with vending machines for your business. Not just the hardware issue, there can be technical issues and you need to fix vending machine issues immediately. We will state the common issues on vending machines. Most importantly, we will illustrate how to repair and maintain vending machines so that they have minimum downtime.
- Part 1 : How Vending Machine is Made?
- Part 2 : How Does Vending Machine Work?
- Part 3 : What are the Common Issues on Vending Machines?
- Part 4 : How to Repair & Maintain Vending Machine?
- Part 5 : What are the Common Issues on Vending Machines?
- Part 6 : FAQs about Vending Machine Repair
Part 1. How Vending Machine is Made?
Every vending machine has two main components and they are hardware and software. While the hardware components constitute the physical structure, the software application takes care of the technicalities. You should have thorough knowledge about its components for quicker and efficient vending machine repair when it malfunctions.
The most important hardware component is the bill acceptor. It accepts dollar bills, validates, and sends the value of the bill for the transaction. Similarly, there is a coin acceptor as well. For cashless payment, modern vending machines contain credit relays to accept debit and credit cards and make the transaction.
Apart from these, you will find a keypad to enter your choice as well as a display that shows you all the options and required information. There are generally trays of different sizes to send out the products as per the options chosen. The vending machine can have a refrigerator deck to store food items at a safe temperature.
The vend motor is an important component that retrieves the chosen item and drops it on the pick-up tray. Besides, there are certain sensors that send confirmation to the system that the customers have picked up the product, fetched the change and balance, and likewise.
Every vending machine has core software that accepts the order, validates the currency, and delivers the product. Along with that, modern vending machines use cloud-based software so that you can have complete control over the vending machine. You can access daily data on sales and available stock.
Besides, vending machine troubleshooting and maintenance software solution is equally an integral part now. You can get updates on the device's health and usage, get alerts when it is not working, get the remote control, and solve technical issues. Moreover, you can communicate with on-site staff through such software and schedule update of applications.
Part 2. How Does Vending Machine Work?
It is essential to know how a vending machine works in order to repair vending machine when it breaks down. There are different types of vending machines available, but the basic functioning is the same in all. Basically, a vending machine keeps a stock of products in different rows, and each of them has a product code.
A customer selects a product from the display by pressing the product code on the keypad. Thereafter, he makes the payment through dollar bills, coins, or credit card. After deduction as per the product price, the change is returned to the dedicated tray.
Then the vending motor activates and goes to the row where the product code matches and picks and drops the product on the tray. The customer collects the product from the slot along with the change. The sensor senses the picking up, and the machine resets to the initial state.
Part 3. What are the Common Issues on Vending Machines?
Here are certain common issues that occur in most vending machines. You need to understand the issues and the reasons behind them so that you can solve them easily.
Machine is Down
A vending machine can stop working due to hardware as well as software issues. If any hardware component malfunctions, it can affect the flow of the working process, and the machine can become unresponsive. Similarly, if any critical app gets outdated, hanged, or faulty, the machine will not be able to process the instructions from the customers, and it will be completely down.
Machine Heats Up or Cools Down Erratically
If you find a vending machine heating up or cooling up abruptly, the issue is due to improper ventilation. This could be due to the placement of the vending machine very close to the walls which blocks proper airflow. It can also occur when the cooling fan inside the vending machine is not working. Therefore, it's essential to monitor the machine's temperature 24/7.
Vending Door Stuck
The older the vending machine, the higher the chances of facing vending door stuck issue. This is because the access panels tend to get dented, and they get worn out. Therefore, the customers can find it difficult to fetch the products. Similarly, it could be hard to open the door and restock. The easiest solution is to replace the door or the access panel whichever is causing the problem, rather than trying out other tricks.
Issue with Apps
Vending machines run various apps for accepting orders, displaying content, and much more. If any of these apps running in the background start to malfunction, the entire vending machine may look faulty. This is where you need remote technical support to pinpoint the problem remotely. Thereafter, you can replace the app with a new one or update it to fix the bugs.
Dollar Bill Issues
One of the frustrating issues that customers commonly face while operating a vending machine is bill invalidation and malfunctioning. The machine may not accept the bill or coin and return it every single time. This could be because the machine fails to recognize the newly released and very old bill or coin.
Similarly, there may not be enough change available to deduct and return the change to the customers. Therefore, you have to check for the availability of change as well as check if the bill validator is working properly. You can call the vending machine company to diagnose bill validator issues.
Out of Stock
The machine showing out of stock is the most common issue you will face in a vending machine. It is not actually an issue because it means the machine has run out of stock for the products it delivers. The message is displayed on the screen when customers choose a product that is out of stock. All you need to do is refill the product and get it back in stock. You can schedule restocking the best-selling regularly if your vending machine’s capacity is on the smaller side.
Part 4. How to Repair & Maintain Vending Machine?
Now that you have understood the common issues with vending machines, let us focus on how to go about their repair and maintenance. We will first discuss how you can solve the technical problem remotely and instantly to reduce the downtime of the vending machine. Most importantly, you will know how to maintain a vending machine to prevent it from halting its regular operation.
1AirDroid Business - Vending Machine Troubleshoot & Maintain Solution
For hardware troubleshooting and maintenance, you need on-site presence. But for software and technical troubleshooting and maintenance, you will need a dedicated vending machine software solution. We recommend AirDroid Business through which you can instantly access your vending machine remotely and perform the required action.
This will reduce the downtime of the vending machine as you can troubleshoot the issue quicker. Similarly, you can schedule maintenance when customers are generally not around so that the customer experience does not get hampered.
How Does AirDroid Business Help in Vending Machine?
Here are the main features of AirDroid Business that helps you to troubleshoot and maintain your vending machine.
1Remotely control devices & resolve issues instantly
You can remotely access the vending machine and understand the technical issue. Thereafter, you can remotely control the machine to perform the required steps to solve the issue. This is going to reduce the downtime as there is no need to attend to the machine on the site. Therefore, it cuts down vending machine repair service, support and maintenance cost significantly.
2Monitor device system health & resource usage
Maintenance of vending machines involves constant monitoring so that you can identify the early signs of breakdown. This will help you to take precautionary steps and timely action so that the machine does not suffer any downtime.
AirDroid Business allows you to check device resource usage such as device storage and memory usage. Similarly, you can check system health by monitoring battery status, machine temperature and likewise. Any abnormality in them can trigger you to take proper steps.
3Communicate with on-site staff with voice chat
If you have sent a staff for on-site inspection, you can use AirDroid Business to voice chat with the staff and get real-time updates. This is useful when you are managing a team of vending machine repairmen and you have to pass on instructions based on the feedback shared. You can assist a vending machine repairman in resolving the issue with the vending machine by dictating the correct steps.
4Get alerts when devices aren't working properly
The most important part of vending machine maintenance is to get alert when the vending machine has some abnormal events, and this is possible through AirDroid Business. AirDroid Business will send timely alerts to you when detects abnormal events on the vending machine. Also, you can execute automated workflows function to resolve problems automatically and immediately which makes the machine fully functional again.
5Automatically rollout app updates across devices
AirDroid Business provides you with application management service. You can streamline app rollouts across your devices so that they get updated automatically from time to time as per the availability of updates. There is no need to perform the updates manually, and no professional IT staff is required anymore. You can push out the updates based on device groups as per time zones without hampering customer experience.
6Put devices & kiosks into groups and locate
You can label the connected devices and group them at your convenience. You can locate them easily and push your action so that the group of devices performs the same action. Additionally, AirDroid Business has a feature called kiosk mode that lets you lock Android devices into single-app or multi-app kiosk mode in order to prevent data overuse and device misuse.
2Other Tips for Vending Machine Repair
Apart from using a vending machine repair and maintenance software solution, here are certain basic steps you should perform for vending machine repair.
1Check the Power
The reason the vending machine is not working could be because the power supply is not correct. That is why you should check the power connection and you can try a different power outlet. You may have to change the power outlet, power cord, and power components of the vending machine as per your assessment.
2Clear Money Paths
The reason why dollar bills are not getting validated or the change is not coming out could be because the money path is blocked. That is why you should clear the money paths manually so that the flow is smooth. The path should also be at the correct angle so that the passage of money is easy as it is supposed to be.
3Keep the Machine on the Level
If the machine is not installed properly, it can malfunction. This is because if the machine is at some angle or on an uneven surface, fetching products and popping them up can be difficult. This leads to malfunctioning and poor customer experience. That is why you should use a spirit level so that the machine stays on the level.
4Look for Repairman
If everything seems to be fine and still the machine is not working, especially for the hardware problem, you should hire a repairman to fix vending machine. You can easily find an experienced vending machine repairman near you easily by finding them online. You can hire them online or get their contact details to talk to in person for on-site repairing.
3How to Maintain Vending Machine?
Here are some essential steps you need to perform for the proper maintenance of vending machine.
Look for Repairman
Whenever there are updates available for the apps installed on the vending machine, you should take the update. At this time, AirDroid Business can help, it can help you automatically update the apps. Updating apps will prevent the machine from malfunctioning and keep updated for better customer experience.
Clean The Machine
You should regularly clean the machine parts so that dirt does not get accumulated. If dirt accumulates, parts can malfunction such as the bill validation may not work. You should also clean the device storage and memory so that it never runs out of space.
Keep checking the temperature of the vending machine randomly to ensure that it is always in the safe range of temperature. This will keep the food items perfect as well as machine parts functional.
Examine Machine Parts
Starting from the trays and locks to slots and doors, you should check all the parts physically from time to time. You should repair any part that might have worn out or replace them as soon as possible. You should also check the device health and usage through maintenance software.
Every vending machine needs regular maintenance and occasional repair. If your maintenance is well, the parts can perform well and you can reduce the downtime significantly. You should use a vending machine repair and maintenance software solution to fix technical issues. We recommend AirDroid Business through which you can remote control the vending machine and maintain the device well enough.