RFID (radio-frequency identification) is the technology whereby encoded digital data in RFID tags are captured by a reader via radio waves. There are three components to an RFID system: an RFID tag, an RFID reader, and an antenna.
This technology can be extremely useful in car wash businesses, so this article provides a quick overview of RFID and how to leverage it within your operations.
How Does RFID Work?
The RFID tag contains an integrated circuit together with an antenna, which transmits data to the RFID reader. The RFID reader then converts these radio waves into a more usable form of data. The information that is collected from a tag is then transferred through a communications interface to a host computer system. Here the data is stored in a database for future analysis.
RFID can be employed in a variety of industries including that of traffic management, where it can be used on toll roads, for example. As RFID allows for wireless non-contact tracking of information, customers don’t have to roll down their window in order to have their chip scanned. In the carwash industry the RFID chips are usually placed inside a badge which is displayed on the windshield of the car enrolled in the program.
RFID technology is being installed in in-bay automatic carwashes throughout the country in order to implement and strengthen customer loyalty programs. The technology allows carwash owners to keep a better track of customers enrolled in their programs enabling them to ensure that these customers are consistently given the proper services outlined in their plans. Using RFID also demonstrates that a wash employs state-of-the-art technology making customers more likely to consider it their carwash of preference.
What are the Benefits of RFID?
An RFID reader placed at the entrance to the carwash reads the RFID information stored in the chip when the customer arrives at the carwash. The information loaded onto the chip tells the RFID reader which program the customer is enrolled into and the system will perform the appropriate service. One benefit of using an RFID system is that it will speed up the queuing process by providing a pass to badge holders, allowing them to enter the car wash without having to buy a ticket or manually enter a passcode.
Using an RFID system allows carwash businesses to provide loyalty rewards to long term members, thus creating a higher number of repeat customers. By adopting the system businesses can equip themselves with a management record and easily programmable services that can be used to customise the car wash experience. Notifications can be set up to automatically track payment and information for the customer to ensure that accurate records are kept. RFID solutions can boost revenue, build customer loyalty, and improve customer satisfaction. RFID tags are an efficient way to organize and manage new and existing data, as well as creating unique files for each card holder in order to customise their personal car wash experience. Individual vehicle owners can have customised wash options, upgrades and pricing. It’s an extremely flexible system, making life easier for customers and providing carwash owners with the appropriate sales offerings.
There is also no need for an attendant with an RFID vehicle tag system as customers can automatically access the car wash system at any time without the need for an attendant or payment processing. RFID Vehicle Tags are given to pass holders and they can simply drive into the car wash as the RFID Reader will recognise the RFID Tag and begin the car wash cycle automatically. The system can also be customised to limit the number of washes per day or week for a badge holder in order to manage supply and demand.
Protecting your Assets with RFID
An RFID Tag can be attached to physical surfaces including components, handheld tools and equipment. The tag has a unique ID, which carries the data about the object it is attached to.
RFID readers can simultaneously read from a number of tags over distance. The reader catches the tags’ IDs and then transmits them, together with the data about the reader’s location and the time of the reading for storing and processing.
The equipment in a carwash is the lifeline of the business. When it operates without a problem, the system creates revenue for the business. However, if it malfunctions and needs repairs, downtime can be days while waiting for a technician to arrive and service the equipment. This is likely to result in lost revenue and disappointed customers. By tagging all of the equipment with RFID tags, manufacturer information, service histories and schedules can all be stored and the information accessed via a web-enabled management server. Furthermore, businesses can set notifications to alert them as to when service dates are near, ensuring that they are performed. With an RFID tag system, carwash owners can check the service history of any piece of equipment whenever they want, accessing it within seconds.
There is no doubt that employing a RFID tag system in a carwash business brings multiple benefits to both customer and owner. Not only can it provide a highly customised service, but it also offers convenience for customers and is a source of rich data that can provide businesses with valuable insights into how to grow their business. On top of this an RFID tag system can also provide essential information when applied to the machinery of the carwash, avoiding down times and thereby enhancing the reputation of the car wash and extending the life of the business’s valuable assets.
Learn More with PSD Codax
At PSD Codax we offer the Auto Passport System which uses RFID technology to automatically identify each individual vehicle passing through the wash with the data being time stamped and stored for reporting. This allows businesses to identify which specific vehicles have pulled onto their lot.
With the Auto Passport System not only can each customer have their own wash options, upgrades and special pricing, but also block certain options via the profile settings for the vehicle’s RFID tag. For more information on our Auto Passport System and our many other cutting edge products, simply get in touch with our expert team today.