Loosing Sales On Moldy Vending Machine

I have a particular location that normally calls me at least around once a month on my combo vending machine,

it is prestigious public location and lots of foot traffic and the machines have to be presentable and always cleaned.

I never encountered a machine of mine having molds,

as i could remember i visited this location after receiving a call from the location and i was surprised that there was a coffee bean inside the delivery bin and i also realized that there is a new combo vending machine located on the 5th floor, mine was situated on the 3rd floor of the establishment.

Maybe this was a sabotage that the other vendor did to me ?

Because a coffee bean will really mess up your combo refrigerated vending machine, it will cause some molds and eventually your machine will have lot of mold everywhere that your customers will find it so unsanitary and will lead to the management on reprimanding you to clean it or maybe it is a crappy machine that needs to be replaced.

This location i have kept for years and years without any problem until that particular coffee bean which i don’t know who placed it.

From that time on the manager just keeps on calling me to have the machine cleaned all the time, i used water, Windex and towels to clean it every time i visit the location and i have to remove all the products from the machine and had to clean it one by one, do you know how much time is wasted on cleaning this machine ?

Anyway there is a breaking point where the manager called and told me that the machine needs to be cleaned immediately and was upset why this is happening all the time even thou i cleaned it thoroughly every time is visited the location.

I was thinking that maybe i used the wrong liquid or chemicals when cleaning the machine, i headed out immediately to Walmart and got Lysol wipes and rushed my way to downtown where the vending machine is located. I tried to use the Lysol Wipes and placed it inside the vending machine so that next time it would be more convenient for me clean the combo machine.

After using the Lysol Wipes i never saw the molds inside the vending machine anymore

and until now i never have any more issues and calls from the location. It is a simple solution whenever you have a machine that is farming molds all the time when it started from a single coffee bean.



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Bus Ticket Inside My Vending Machine

It is amazing on what people tend to imagine to put inside the vending machine.

I have a location that called me on the weekend and taken down some notes to fix the snack machine.  I always encounter simple problems which I know that all the vendors tend to fix by themselves which is relatively easy even for a newbie in this business.

I just turned the power off and remove the coin mechanism assembly and remove the jammed coins

I included some pictures on the coin jam.

This is a classic problem that everyone in the business is always facing

and it is imperative that you should know how to fix it yourself or else you get charged by a taxi meter if you opt it to be fixed by a service technician which you don’t ever need one.

To my surprise after having many years in servicing vending machines for a full time living as a self-employed person.  It is my first time that I found a bus ticket inside my vending machine.

Keeping Composure at all times is the key.

People wanted to get free stuff.

Location on the east side of the town likes free stuff with the exception of schools and universities.

Young customers likes to cheat and try to get their hand on how to get free stuff by trying all sorts.   Keypad random sequence to dispense free stuff.

I just hope that they think about the situation of vendors on making an honest living and trying to keep up.  Always putting up a show for everyone to provide a mutual and beneficial relationship.

Some customers that think maybe the machines are crappy and need to be changed.  Actually it is the customer’s fault not knowing on how to use the vending machine properly.

It just needs a simple cleaning with water and tissue paper on the coin path.

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Essential Things Needed In Vending Machine Business

When you have been doing this vending machine business for quite a while

,sometimes when you are timing the locations from moving to the next will have some minor setbacks and you would tend to spend more time allotment than the usual calculated time according to your expectations and estimated schedule.

I will enumerate the possible problems that happens when you are doing you’re vending locations.

A. There are occasions when the coin return button doesn’t go back

to its default or original position when you depress it, or when one of your customers depressed it super hard and it got stuck.

I will take a picture on my next visit and update this post. The solution is to get a small piece of cardboard probably from the snack boxes that are plentiful inside your service van, wrap it up and make it into a roll and just place it underneath the L shape metal inside the vending machine that is secured to the spring.

Materials needed : small rolled piece of cardboard, duck tape or scotch tape to full secure the rolled cardboard.

( Picture soon to be uploaded )

B. When you are loading and unloading products for a living on a daily basis sometimes you can hurt yourself,

as i have mentioned this on my previous post. I was hurrying up to get things done when i was in downtown and tripped myself in the loading dock, at that time i didn’t have any first aid kit. Most of the injuries that i have encountered are : pop and snacks cardboard like paper cuts, dolly injuries, hand sprains.

Materials needed : First Aid Kit

C. I never wear gloves whenever i started out the vending business.

My finger gets so dirty after the end of the day and during winter when weather is cold when you are always out on the street doing the loading and unloading, you will eventually get blisters and finger tip cracks and of course if you are servicing vending machines you never know what kind of germs that you might some into contact with, so it would be appropriate that you must mandatory wear latex gloves and will also serve you a good grip on all your products.

Materials needed : Disposable Latex Gloves

D. As i have mentioned on my previous posts

that when you are servicing and fixing some simple misalignment of coin mechanism and some misplaced screws and nuts that have fallen from the normal usage of the vending machine or when some of the trays need some minor adjustments then a multi philips metric set and an adjustable wrench would be imperative.

Materials needed : Multi Philips Metric Set and Adjustable Wrench

Note : It is a plus factor if your multi philips set is magnetic so that it can pick up screws and nuts fallen beyond reach


E. It would be nice to have a small magnetic flashlight

when you are doing some minor repairs that it can be fixed in certain position inside the vending machine so that you can clearly see what you are working on. By all means you can also use the torch feature on your mobile phone.

Materials needed : Magnetic flashlight

F. Right now it is definitely a need to make sure that your mobile phone is absolutely charged

all the time to take pictures for my blog, to take pictures for the problem on my vending machines, to take pictures for immediate sms to technician on how to get minor programming procedures done while you are still on location. So it is wise to invest a fast car charger or a backup mobile phone fast charger on your work van.

Materials needed : Fast car charger for your mobile phone or a Fast Charger Battery for your mobile phone

G. Fluorescent bulbs inside you’re vending machine has a lifespan and will eventually burn out,

i know that the newer combo vending machines comes with LED lightning that doesn’t need maintenance, but a majority of the vending machines that most vendors have are still the ones that uses the conventional fluorescent light bulbs. I learned my lesson that machines that do have proper lighting, customers might think that you’re vending machine is not working or out of order. But there are other locations that you can do away without changing fluorescent light bulbs since they are always the same customers.

It will is a time saver if you equip yourself with the most common fluorescent light bulb and starter. The most commonly configuration is the : 24″ T8 Fluorescent type bulb and 12″ F8 T5 Fluorescent type bulb.

Materials needed : 2 pieces of 24″ T8 and 1 piece of 12″ F8 T5 ( for c series vending machines )

Note : i always have around 4 to 8 pieces of 24″ T8 because im maintaining around hundreds of machines but if you have newer machines, you don’t need to bring that much and also you can do away without the F8 T5

F. Most of the cases on my daily routine, you will be encountering problems that the machine is having

problems with payouts

, problems with some minor electrical issues like prompts on : “select another item for all the selections”, intermittent power outrages on snack machines. I thought maybe the snack motherboard might be the culprit on most occasions but after isolating the problem i found it out to be the coin mechanism to be the problem in most cases.

Since the coin mechanism is fairly expensive, and it doesnt break as often as light bulbs then maybe just 1 coin mechanism as a backup.

Materials needed : 1 piece Coin Mechanism


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Bad Day At Work

When doing the vending machine business,

never force yourself to be in a hurry at the time, once you get into an accident it’s all over.

It is not worth your time and effort to earn a few dollars if you get injured. What is the purpose of earning money if you had an accident while you are in a hurry. I always remember in my childhood days when my mother tells me not to hurry up all the time and it is still very finely printed in my memory :

  • what is the use of money when you get into a car accident ? all the money in the world will not make you normal again
  • what is the use of money when you get into a motorcycle accident ? it might be too late to regret
  • if you are late in school then what is the big deal ? if you get into an accident would a late report in your school records affect you and your future well being ?

Whenever you are doing something just take in easy and sometimes you have to bend the rules and have to take care of yourself first before anything else, if you are late of an interview then maybe there is a bigger reason why you are late because you are cautious when driving to your destination.

If a bad day in work can be avoided

then you will still have the next day to go your vending location when your late in visiting just becuase you are extra careful when driving to that place, you just have to let go what people think about you and just do what is right.

In some extreme cases like you have been trying to go that particular location every other day but its a tough place since parking is very rare and when there is a vacant space the next u turn, someone else grab that precious spot. In your mind maybe its around $50 profit if you’d have done it but because you have to be careful to find a parking slot someone else got it ahead of you. If you are too fast without being in compsure you might get into a split second accidents which are too numerous to mention.

Well i am usually a very careful guy when doing my things

and everything is scheduled and organized but it was today that i had my bad work day when i was hurrying up to my van to go to the next location that was closing and was thinking maybe i can still make it on the next location or else i wont be coming to vancouver tomorrow and will be delayed after 2 days since the next day is for surrey and richmond locations.

With this in mind i think i would have to change my priorities and mindset again when getting things done. My suggestion to myself is just to take it easy and try to finish work when you are able to with the thought of being very cautious and careful.

It would be a suggestion that the divider painted in bright colors like yellow to avoid other people that might trip or fall.

It is absolutely my fault since i was in a hurry to get things done.

Healthy Vending is a Growing Sector

Growing Sector

The healthy snack vending industry is the fastest-growing sector of the vending industry. With the rise in awareness of the need for healthy food and snacks, healthy food vending is rising faster than ever.

Smart Snacks in Schools

Opportunities for vending locations in schools are especially hot in today’s market. The USDA recently published a science-based set of nutrition standards for snack foods and drinks sold to children at school during the day. Under the USDA All Foods Sold in Schools standard, which creates an opportunity for businesses offering healthy vending options? Naturals2Go is uniquely positioned to offer new operators an edge in today’s convenience snack market.

A Nationwide Trend

Outside of schools, the demand for vending machines that offer healthy snacks and beverages continues to grow. More and more people are looking out for their health and are becoming more aware of the foods they consume. In a 2014 Nielsen Global Survey of Snacking, more than 30,000 consumers in 60 different countries were polled, and the results were conclusive.

Most people today are actively looking for ways to improve their health. Inclusion of healthy drinks and snacks in the vending machines is a result of the trend towards awareness of the unhealthy ingredients in the snacks people consume.

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Be Careful When Servicing Vending Machine Business Location

I have a lot of locations that i visit on a monthly basis

and i just visited this particular office location after the xmas break. As usual since it is a small location i quickly prepared all the items before i enter the building on the bin and hand trolley.

I greeted the office staff and went into the break room, i didnt notice that there was a glass bowl of xmas goodies on top of my coke pop machine when i pulled the pop machine door, the thing fell and crash to the floow so loud that the office attendant at the reception came in a flash!

I was so sorry at that point that i keep on apologizing and have to get a broom and dustpan to clean the mess up. It is a good thing that the people in the building aren’t the sensitive bunch type, if this would have happened in another location i would have end of paying for the decorative piece that i accidentally smashed.

Here are the picture to show up what happened.


Taking A Break From Self Employment


I serviced all my locations before I went for a break,

I felt that I had a burnout during December 2017. It is very important to have a short break from working. I remember when I was in the gym doing 2 days on and 2 days off schedule during my university days following a workout schedule will also burn out your body after doing it consistently for at least 3 months continuous. It would be wise to take a short break doing nothing, the duration is suggested to be around 3 to 7 days.

It would be wise to go a thing which is not part of your routine, maybe just randomly going to place that you been never before and just to take a break and go to unfamiliar places just for the heck of it.

On Friday Jan 12, 2018 while a was filling up Petro Canada

at a gasoline station on the corner of granville ave at Richmond,bc, my mindset was to get things done quickly and as fast as I can to end the day, there was this person who approached me while im paying at the cashier using my debit card, he began speaking to me and asking which city im from in the Philippines.

I assumed at I can never get away with my accent since I grew up outside of Canada, I told him that im from Makati City and he told me he was from Pasay City and I was trying to be friendly even thou I have a ton of things to do on that Friday.

I asked him what industry is he working at and he mentioned that he broke his spinal cord and had a metal attachment on his spinal cord and I suddenly shifted my mood and was sympathizing his situation and he told me that he cannot work anymore and he just drops his wife to work and picks his wife after work. He in my eyes is still in a very productive age of around 60 years old, he told me that he has to force himself to go out everyday just to talk to random strangers because if you are isolated for a long time being disabled and no one to talk too would lead to inconsistent thoughts and mental problems.

I told him that maybe you should do something that you are passionate?

( I should have mentioned to start a blog! heh he he ), proceed to the nearby community center and take up some short courses and the like perhaps, he actually thanked me and told me that he is going thereafter my conversation with him and I gave him my business card in case he wanted to bother me at times which I don’t mind.

My analogy is that if you are doing work and vending business for a long time and every day is repetitive and putting up a show for everyone and well-mannered behavior would also lead into fatigue and there is a strong need to be left alone to make some reflections and take a well-deserved rest.


In doing the vending business you have to be extra careful

when doing lifting, pulling and pushing motions which if not being properly done would lead into minor sprain and injuries. Right now I have my left hand bones misaligned from being careless when I was moving the fridge packs and boxes of pop which I not heavy but if you twist your arm it will lead into inflammation of the wrist and cannot perform simple tasks and every moment will be very painful.

Way back in the year of 2015 I think it was during the spring months, I was loading pop into my van and suddenly twisted my left arm and lead to a sprain on my mid arm which was very painful, I went to a chiropractor and physiotherapist but to no avail. I went back to the Philippines on December 2015 and had to endure the pain on my upper left arm since the chiropractor in Richmond told me to take some xrays instead. In the Philippines it is a common practice to look for a ‘HILOT’ person in order to heal injuries and sprains without any xrays or physio techniques. Glad that the HILOT person was able to fix my upper arm from twisting inquiry.


in the Philippines is an integral part in maintaining personal health and the practitioner can remove any form of sprain and injuries by aligning your bones and nerves because sometimes the nerves are not in its original place when you have the sharp shooting pain syndrome.

It was very fortunate for me to find a HILOT person here right in the middle of Richmond and it is a Chinese version and the massager is a neuron specialist in aligning nerves and bones due to sprains and minor inquiries from sudden twisting of arms or other body parts when you are often using it for lifting, pulling and pushing products in and out from the van or during the refilling of products on your vending machines.


Conclusion :

It is essential to take a break and take some minor adjustments on your bone and nerve especially when your work entails you in moving all the time.

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