How to Trick a Car Wash Change Machine – Car Wash Owners Beware

Written by

Bruce Sonnier


Marcus Dutton

how to trick a car wash change machine

Car washes are often susceptible to being stolen from car wash change machine hacks.

Ways of how to trick a car wash change machine could even be found on the internet. Videos of how to hack self-service car wash machines for free car washes have even gone viral. And people would even steal from a car wash coin vault.

But stealing, be it in a car wash or elsewhere, is an unadvisable action, bad action, as it would be getting free stuff at the expense of others. Thankfully, some hacks don’t work on all car washes.

Hacking Into Car Wash Change Machines


You can check your change machines and car wash machines if any hacks would work on them. If any of the hacks did, you could resolve them by applying more strict security, being more alert, or switching systems if necessary.

It would also help to hide your car wash coin vault keys in a secure place or change the locks, as it’s possible that someone can get access to your keys or another carwash can have the duplicate keys.

Here’re some methods they often use to get away without paying for a car wash.

1. Using a Paper Bill


People can break into car wash change machine to get money using a paper bill. They’d take a paper bill they have and use it on the change machine to double the amount of the paper bill in change.

This trick only works in the type of change machine where a paper bill would be slid in a slot lengthwise. It doesn’t work in change machines that have a tray in which a paper bill would be placed, and then the tray would be slid in afterward.

How this trick is done is demonstrated below. Let’s say they use a $5 bill.

  • Crumple the $5 Bill – They would crumple their $5 bill then smooth it out after. It would leave their bill with a very wrinkly surface.
  • Cut out a notch in the lower-left corner of the $5 bill – They would particularly cut in the lower-left corner, half an inch before the number 5.
  • When they insert the $5 bill, the machine will think everything is fine until the notched part enters it and it notices the flaw. By then, it would reject the $5 bill and put it back out. And if it’s done correctly, $5 in change would also be dispensed.

2. Using Foil

People would also take advantage of foil’s reflectiveness to hack a car wash change machine. With the foil’s reflectiveness, people would trick a change machine’s sensors and make it dispense change. Below is how:

  • The foil would be cut up into the size of a paper bill to fit into the slot of the change machine.
  • They would slide the piece of foil into the change machine with the shiny side up. What would happen then is that the foil would reflect the template for checking the bills back to the sensor. Then the machine will think it’s real money that was slid in, so then it will dispense the change.

3. Using a Paper Bill Photocopy

This hack involves creating counterfeit money, which is a major federal offense. It’s done by photocopying a paper bill and then using it on the change machine.

  • They would make a one-to-one double-sided copy of a paper bill using a copying machine.
  • Most change machines could be tricked into accepting a photocopy of a paper bill. Then, it would dispense the change.

4. Using a Magnet to Get a Free Car Wash


In relation to ripping off car washes, there’s this car wash hack that self-service car wash owners must beware of, as it’s actually popular and went viral on TikTok. In this method, a car wash hack magnet would be used to rip off the car wash machine.

Thankfully, this hack doesn’t work on all self-service car wash machines. Older self-service car wash machines are the ones that are susceptible to this hack.

But even if the newer self-service car wash machines could not be ripped off with this hack, there would be the risk of them getting broken. In the case that it gets broken, you can find the violator.

  • They would use a large, high-powered magnet for this hack. It’s capable of messing with self-service car wash machines to get free credit. As they put the magnet over the coin acceptor, the machine would be caused to give credit for car washing for free.
  • Repeatedly tapping the magnet on the coin acceptor would keep increasing the credit. The more they tap on it, the more time they get for car washing.

5. Using a Car Wash Coin Vault Key to Steal Money

There is also the possibility of a thief having a collection of car wash coin vault keys that they would use to break into car wash coin vaults to steal money. It could be an inside job or someone with a collection of keys from another car wash. Below is how the thief would do it:

  • They keep a collection of car wash coin vault keys. They would keep trying each key until they got to open the coin vault. Once it’s open, they will take the cash.
  • They would put the locks back in place to make it seem like no crime had been done. And the car wash owner would only notice that they have been stolen only when they come to collect the money.


Now that you are aware of the tricks people would do on how to trick a car wash change machine, get free credit from a self-service car wash, and steal money from a coin vault, remember to take precautionary measures to prevent such tricks from being done to your car wash.

Also, it would be great and much appreciated if you help us spread this information to help other car wash owners safeguard their business.

5/5 - (3 votes)



"As the content writer of Charmcitycirculator, I intend to bring just the best purchase options and straightforward answers to your problems. Other than what we put up on our website, we hope to hear more from you. "

– Bruce Sonnier