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      Carwash Market

Free Vacuum Time

...But Only For Loyal Paying Customers


 

 

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Your Loyalty Point Advantage
Your Stored Value Wicket customers accumulate one Available Loyalty Point for each dollar (euro etc.) actually spent for services at your carwash. It's your loyal paying customers whom you want to reward with benefits. Many operators have tried to offer free vacuum time as an advantage over their competitors only to find it exploited by excessive non-customer use.

Wickets Loyalty Points provide you with a method to offer the Free Vacuum benefit, but only for your loyal paying customers. The concept meter box depicted above has the traditional coin acceptor and two Wicket Readers to provide three methods for starting the vacuum. The Wicket Reader on the left is configured to start the Vacuum after debiting $1.00 from the Wicket's Account Balance or Bonus Balance. The Wicket Reader on the right is configured to start the Vacuum after debiting a set number of Available Loyalty Points from the Wicket. Since a Wicket only accumulates Available Loyalty Points when a customer actually uses his Wicket for services at your carwash, then the free vacuum benefit is truly only available to your good loyal paying customers.
 


Configuration Setup
The WR88 Wicket Reader is field programmable so that you can configure it for different interfaces to your equipment and different pricing using a Reader Programming Wicket and the Wickets Administrator Utility software. Most carwash equipment is based on coin operation... which means that the equipment looks for output pulses from a coin acceptor, bill acceptor, or some other similar device. The WR88 Wicket Reader can be programmed to produce output pulses just like a coin acceptor after debiting a Wicket for the start amount required by the equipment. Likewise, it is also programmed to know the Start Amount for the equipment, the Output Pulse Value (such as $.25 per pulse) and the duration of each pulse (such as 50ms).

Wicket Readers are shipped from the factory in a "virgin state" and must be programmed in the field by reading this data from a Reader Programming Wicket. Once you have installed Wickets Administrator, click the  Reader Programming  button from the main screen to open the screen shown below. Each tab on the screen will be used to define how a Group of similar equipment will operate. The data for each tab Group is then written to a Reader Programming Wicket which is then taken around to each Wicket Reader that is to use those set parameters.

Each tab Group (except for the first  one reserved for Revalue Stations) is associated with a group of service equipment expected to operate with the same prices, the same interface, and other parameters that will configure the equipment  (WR88 Wicket Reader) so that it knows how to communicate with the equipment and what to do with customer Wickets when presented. The screen shot on the right shows example setup parameters that must be programmed into Wicket Readers. Below are the setup steps to take.

1.) Click the  Make A Programming Wicket  tab, then click a Group Tab for a group of equipment that will all operate with the same prices and parameters. You will need one Group for the Wicket Readers that debit the Account Balance, and another one for the Wicket Readers that use Loyalty points to start the equipment.

2.) Set the Group Name by clicking the drop-down box arrow and selecting a name from the list, which include names for laundry and other applications, or you may directly enter any name you like in the box. This name will then be shown on the tab.

3.) Set the Wicket Reader Interface according to the hardware interface the machine requires. Select the Coin Pulse Output if the equipment requires coin pulses to activate it and you are using the WK-LV Module or the WK-HV Module to interface to the machine. Select the CardDisplay Protocol if you have compatible IDX display-timer and use the WK-CD Module for its interface.

4.) Set your operating prices (so the Wicket Reader will know how much to debit from a Customer Wicket) by setting the Start Up Value and the Increment Value using the Pop-Up Keypad. The Start Up Value is the minimum amount to debit to get the machine started and the Increment Amount is usually some smaller amount to debit for additional time or services once the start amount has been satisfied. If the Wicket Reader finds that the presented Wicket does not have sufficient funds to start a machine, it won’t debit any funds at all from it and will blink yellow to warn of insufficient funds.

4a.) Just above the Start Up Value is a checkbox  to Pay Using Available Loyalty Points instead of money in the Account Balance or Bonus Balance. When checked, the Start Up Value becomes the Points To Start that will be debited by the Wicket Reader to start the equipment. Also the Pulse Value (or Coin Value) becomes Start Pulses (or Start Coins) so that the Wicket Reader knows what to send out to the equipment to get it started. When this option is selected, the Wicket Reader will work only with Loyalty Points and completely ignore the Account Balance and Bonus Balance of the Wicket.  

5.) Set the Debit Limit Options according to the number of incremental debits the machine can handle.

6.) If you are using a "Coin Pulse Output Interface" then set the Pulse Time (in milliseconds) according to what your equipment expects to receive from coin operated equipment as a valid coin pulse. Generally this value will be between 15ms and 100ms. If you cannot find this information about your equipment, IDX recommends 50ms be used in the carwash market as your default choice.

7.) Set the Pulse Value. In most North American sites, coin pulses are based on a $.25 coin. However you can set the coin pulse value to be pretty much anything you like. For example, in Europe and Australia there are no 0.25 coins, so 0.20, or 0.50 or 1.00 may be what is required.

8.) In the Reader Options section:

  1. Check the No Service - Debit Lockout Enable box to lockout further debits to customer Wickets if there is no Service Sense signal (machine did not start) for 10 minutes following a debit from the Wicket. When a lockout occurs, the Wicket Reader will continuously blink red to indicate the problem. The debit lockout condition can be cleared by starting the machine or cycling power. During debit lockout a customer can get his money refunded to his Wicket simply by reading his Wicket on the same Wicket Reader one more time. The Wicket Reader will blink green to indicate that the money has been refunded to the Wicket.

  2. Check the Service Sense = High box if the voltage sensed by the Service Sense Input to the Wicket Reader goes high when the machine is activated. This is the case with most equipment. However, in cases the opposite is true, such as in Maytag laundry machines that produce a “machine available” signal which does the logical opposite and thus requires you to leave the box unchecked.

  3. Leave the Xtra-Time Enabled box unchecked.

  4. Check the Rainbow When Idle box if you would like the Wicket Reader face to occasionally depart from its normal blue idle color and quickly cycle through the colors of the rainbow. This feature can help attract attention to the Wicket Reader, but some may be concerned that it may confuse the customer if it occurs about the time the customer is reading his Wicket. Your choice.

9.) When you are done, tap your Reader Programming Wicket on the Wicket Reader Programming Module to have it write this configuration information to the Wicket

10.) Take the Reader Programming Wicket around to all of the machines that will operate with these particular configuration parameters and tap the Wicket on the machine’s Wicket Reader to have it read in and program itself with these parameters. The Wicket Reader will blink green to indicate that it has successfully read the parameters from the Reader Programming Wicket.


Notes:
1.) If you have a Card-Display Protocol compatible IDX display-timer that allows your customer to see more information about the transaction and the Wicket Account Balance, you can only have one of the two Wicket Readers connected with this interface as the display timers only have a single serial port for this purpose. We recommend using the Wicket Reader that will debit from the Account Balance for this interface and using the "Coin Pulse Output" interface with the Wicket Reader that will use Loyalty Points.

2.) The Coin Pulse Output interface is such that all coin acceptors, bill acceptors, and Wicket Readers can all have their individual interface wires tied together to the same terminal on the timer's input.