Unlocking the mystery of hotel key cards – Why doesn’t my key card work?
In today’s highly competitive hotel marketplace, keeping your guests happy is a top priority. Tired, late-night business travelers, families with restless children in tow, and virtually any type of guest can become frustrated and annoyed when that key card (even after multiple attempts) will not unlock the door to their room. To help you mitigate this troublesome cause of guest dissatisfaction, read the following guide to trouble-free key cards:
Troubleshooting and tips when key cards don’t seem to work
- On average, magnetic striped key cards can be re-programmed up to seven times without losing performance. However, the care of the card is an important lifespan factor. Cards with scratches, exposure to debris, and other types of physical damage can be rendered unusable.
- Key cards may become inoperable when the magnetic stripe is demagnetized through exposure to magnets. Name tags, signs, and purse and wallet closures, and mobile phones are all potential sources of magnet exposure.
- We recommend cleaning locks and encoders once per quarter for interior locks, once per month for exterior locks.
- Make sure you’re ordering key cards appropriate for your specific lock system and software. Depending on your lock system, you may require Low, Medium, or High Coercivity magnetic stripes, or you may require one of a variety of different RFID chip technologies.
- We recommend storing new key cards and used key cards separately at the front desk. By preventing the mixing of used and new cards, this practice will help with troubleshooting and will allow you shift over to new cards in the event used cards begin giving you trouble.
- Sometimes the encoder itself may malfunction or need repair. If you have multiple encoders, test to see if one performs better than the other.
- If you see a green light when swiping your card in the lock, but you have to wiggle the card or door knob to open the door, the lock itself and/or batteries may need attention, cleaning, or replacement.
- Encode a special “master” key card and try it on a troublesome guest room lock. If the master key card unlocks the door, but the standard key card does not, the problem is likely with the encoder, the software, or may be due to human error.
- A software update made to an RFID lock system may change the type of key card technology required and may render existing key card inventory useless. Again, make sure you order key cards appropriate for you lock system and software.
Did you know?
Beyond ensuring your key cards are dependable and trouble-free, keep your guests happy with key cards that are commemorative and collectible. To find out more about adding value to key cards, please contact your PLI representative at 1-800-752-1017 or contact us HERE.