Car wash coin changers are at every car wash. The big question is what coins will you vend?
One issue with changers is people using them to make change and thereby leaving your machines empty for customers and the added hassle of going to the bank to purchase quarters. It will be more of an issue for washes close to apartment complexes or laundromats. It’s not uncommon to have to buy $500 a week in quarters in locations with high-density apartment complexes. Two ways to deal with this include dollar coins, tokens or a token/quarter mix.
If you are looking at coin acceptors, be sure to purchase multi-coin coin acceptors for flexibility at your car wash down the road.
Most people regret going with quarter tokens as it takes a cheap token to keep the cost reasonable as tokens will walk away (figure 1-2%). By going with cheap tokens, inevitably tokens will be used that came from other places, resulting in lost revenues. High security, dollar valued tokens are the only way to go. Dollar coins are convenient for customers as they don’t have to drop a ton of quarters into the machine. The high security token, with a 100 mile protected radius, costs around $.19 each, thereby making $.81 each on the 1-2% yearly walk away. If you are going through a lot of coins and make the switch to tokens, expect the laundromat or their customers to complain.
By mixing in a few tokens with the quarters (tokens are valued at $.25) when someone comes to get change they either have to redeem the tokens at your wash or throw them away. Make sure to put a sign up stating that the changer dispenses a mix of tokens and quarters and the behavior should stop it.