Impact on Magnet
Here are 6 reasons why your hotel key card stops working & what precautions you should take for smooth functioning:
- Can your cell phone demagnetize your key card? Yes, but it probably doesn’t. How about another cards like credit card? Yes, but almost never does either. It’s true that any magnet has the ability to impact the mag stripe on the back of the card. Magnetic handbag clasps and phones are all suspect. However, do you notice that credit cards are hardly ever demagnetized and you keep them for much, much longer..
- It has to do with the quality of the mag stripe on the back of the card. Mag stripes come in two different levels of coercivity (the level of how difficult it is to encode and erase info from the stripe). Hotels tend to use low coercivity (LoCo), which is also what many theme parks use. Designed for short-term use, the data can be changed and erased easily. Credit cards, bank cards, and many employee access cards utilize mag stripes that are considered high coercivity. HiCo has a much stronger magnetic field (by about 8x) which is much less likely to allow accidental erasure. If you guessed that the LoCo type hotels use is less expensive, you’re correct. Putting the hotel key card on a table where a TV is present, next to a camera or even in your wallet or purse near another mag strip card could wipe the data or damage it.
- Another factor is physical damage. If you dropped your card on a hard surface it might have gotten nicked. Scratches, crusted cracker-crumb bits and folds might make it harder for the card to be read. Cards left in the hot sun, rubbed by beach sand in a pocket or stepped on by a dog might look just fine but may have lost the ability to open your door. Cards that are turned back in to the hotel are re-used endlessly, and once they get stuck together with gunk, staff will finally throw them away. Did you know that hotels almost NEVER clean room keys? This is also something to keep in mind for all the guests that like to keep a stash of colorful key cards as a momento from vacations. Maybe consider using a sanitizing wipe before tucking them away.
- The age of the card and the encoding equipment will change the effectiveness of key cards. It is advised, that often, “encoding equipment needed to be cleaned or maintained” when an investigation of ineffective key cards was done. This means that the hotel might be using old equipment or maybe it hasn’t been cleaned in a while. The mag stripe will eventually wear out, and after hundreds of times of running cards through the low-cost encoder it is only a matter of time before the data becomes garbled and worn out.
- Timing. Key cards might be programmed to deactivate at noon on the date of your check-out. If you have two back-to-back reservations the front desk hostess might not have connected them so your key might stop working when your first reservation is over.
- MIGRATE TO RFID. Ask Prime Source, technical team to visit your hotel & checkout to upgrade your magnetic lock to RFID. Yes, its easy & cost effective procedure which takes less than 15 minutes to migrate from Magnetic to RFID contactless system and that too at very cost effective price. No need to change your strong locks just migrate the technology from old to new. Hotel can also invite Prime Source Technical to trade in old magnetic lock & replace them with NEW RFID Technology locks. Here you get value from them for your old locks thus saving lot of money from other company.