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ATM card ?

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  • ATM card ?

    My bank has the state-of-the-art ATMs where you put your card in the slot and then pull it back out and put it away so that you do not accidentally leave it in the ATM. Sometimes the ATM says that it cannot read my card. The bank issued me a new replacement ATM card, but about 20% of the time I still have to try my card more than once for the ATM to accept it. Am I sliding my ATM card in and out incorrectly? Am I leaving it in too long before sliding it back out? Could the ATMs have maintenance and/or cleaning issues? Are other customers having the same problem, but not reporting it - thus making me look like the weirdo who is having a problem that other customers are not having? I would not mind except for the fact that I do not want to get stuck late one night when I really need cash immediately and cannot get it. WTF?!

    Thank you!

  • #2
    I have not experienced that sort of ATM, but I did spend many years supporting electronic funds transfer systems for credit and debit cards. The magnetic stripes on bank and credit cards are exceptionally resilient. They can be in visibly terrible condition and the card readers can still manage to read them. We had a group of test cards that we subjected to deliberate accelerated deterioration and they had to be in pretty awful condition before they were unreadable.

    The big killer of magnetic stripes is -- as you might expect -- magnetic fields and they have to be in close proximity to the card to have that effect.

    So, in your case, given that you have been issued with a new card, the culprit appears to be the ATM. Card readers do accumulate a coating of gunk over time. There is a type of disposable cleaning card which is soaked in isopropyl alcohol that should be used periodically on card reading equipment. I suggest that you report your continuing problems to the branch staff.
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    Hammond M-102 #21000.
    Leslie 147 #F7453 in the queue.
    Hammond S-6 #72421

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    • #3
      Also if you are placing your card in your wallet over another magnetic strip card back to back, it could be demagnetizing that card. I have had that happen to me so now I make sure my CC and ATM cards are staggard in my wallet in stead of staked up on one another
      Allen 5300-DK, Hammond A-105, Conn Custom 905-DK

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