What To Do If A Card Machine Stops Working

Card machines are everywhere and have become a fundamental part of everyday business. Whether you work as a taxi driver, a market trader, a barber or one of a thousand other possibilities, if your job involves financial transactions, it’ll involve a card machine. They make processing payments quick and easy and it’s hard to imagine life without them anymore. 

Unfortunately, this is also a potential weakness for any business. Card machines are usually very reliable, but on rare occasions, they stop working. What do you do when that happens? Here at Business Quotes, we’ve spent a lot of time studying card machines, so here’s what we recommend. 

card machines for small shops

Fixing A Malfunctioning Card Machine

The first thing we suggest requires some foresight; don’t go cashless. Even if you don’t have a single customer who pays with cash, it’s worth keeping the option just as a backup. You might have the most sophisticated, modern payment device set up and perhaps none of your customers has paid with cash in months, but don’t go cashless. It might seem superfluous, especially when your cashbox does nothing but gather dust, but if the worst happens, you’ll be glad you kept it. Having a line of customers queuing out the door and being unable to sell anything because your cash machine won’t work is an incredibly stressful experience. A few people might grumble about having to leave and visit a cash machine, but it’s better than shutting up shop until the problem is solved.

That’s a temporary solution in place, but what can you do to fix the machine itself? If it refuses to switch on, won’t accept payments and you just get error messages, what can you do? It’s a bit of a cliche, but try turning it off and on again. The old-fashioned “involuntary, hard reset” is overdone, but it works more often than not. Disconnect all the power cables, switch it off, wait for a short while and then switch it back on. With luck, this should solve the problem and you’ll only be inconvenienced for a few minutes. 

If That Doesn’t Work…

There is no guarantee that this will work though and there will inevitably be occasions where your machine stubbornly refuses to cooperate. First, check the connection. There’s always the possibility that the fault isn’t with the card terminal but with the internet or WiFi. If the internet is still live, try using a cable instead of a wireless link, as something could be interrupting the signal. 

If it is online but the problem persists, check for software updates. Like all of today’s fancy gadgets, card companies regularly make changes to fix bugs or shortcomings and the devices need to be kept up to date. If you don’t have automatic updates turned on, check that your operating system is the current version and update it if not. On a good day, this will take a matter of minutes but larger system upgrades can take hours, so we recommend having auto-updates activated.

Nine times out of ten, once you’ve restarted your device, checked the internet and applied any outstanding updates, your card machine should be as good as new. If not, the last things you can try are plugging it into a different power outlet or giving it a clean. Still no success? Pick up the phone and call your provider’s service centre and they’ll guide you through troubleshooting.

Card machines for small businesses

Replacing Faulty Card Machines

Your provider will likely send out an engineer to examine the device if it can’t be fixed over the phone. The worst-case scenario is that the card machine can’t be salvaged and needs replacing, which is a good time to ask about the warranty. Most respectable payment services include cover and providing you’re in the agreed timeframe, they’ll provide you with a free replacement. 

That being said, maybe the experience has left a bad taste in your mouth and perhaps you’re thinking about looking for a new card machine. If so, you’ve come to the right place. Here at Business Quotes, we’ve got ample experience in finding the right equipment for all kinds of companies, both large and small. Want to get a new card machine? Click on the option below and get a quick comparison, let’s help you find the right one.

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Categories: Advice, Card Machines, General

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