Vending machines are a way for schools, large corporations or property owners to make extra income in a specific location. However, these machines sometimes have problems, ranging from mechanical issues, the food inside the machine or general cleanliness. Make sure you know these problems and risks before setting up a vending machine for your business.

Unhealthy Options

Vending machines have come under fire recently for not selling any healthy options to their customers, having only candy and chips to choose from. While this may make people who are health conscious not buy things from a vending machine, it also encourages those who are good at making those types of decisions, like children, to eat unhealthy. According to a study by the University of Michigan and Michigan State University, vending machines stocked with unhealthy options for young people often help lead to unhealthy eating habits. If you are a vending machine owner, it might be a good idea to offer more health conscious products in the machine, as anyone of any age can purchase them.

Mechanical Malfunctions

Vending machines can break or malfunction, causing customers to lose money, become frustrated with the machine and cost the owners money they would otherwise be making. While there are a number of vending machine repair companies and people out there, it may take them a few days to actually fix the machine, costing you a good amount of money from regular or occasional customers. The repair of the machine may cost you money as well, which will only add to the money you have lost when the machine breaks or malfunctions. Check the machines regularly to ensure they are functioning properly and not on the verge of breaking.


Sometimes food in these machines can melt, spill or go bad, in the machine which can draw insects and rodents to the machine, as well as make people buying snacks from it sick. Every few weeks, open up the machine and clean it so that there are no bits or food or dust which may have accumulated on the products. Clean the glass so that the products really stand out to passing customers. Clean the tray where the snacks or items fall, as this is the area where most of the food refuse may be located if their packaging breaks. Clean the buttons since many people's fingers are probably dirty. This takes some extra time and care from the vending machine owner but should pay off in sales, as well as keep customers who use the vending machine from getting sick.