A vital part of the majority of vending machines is a component called the coin mechanism. Most modern vending machines use coin mechanisms to take payment and make the vending machine dispense the product that has been purchased.
After the money has been inserted into the coin mechanism and the product chosen, it is dispensed either by being released into an open compartment at the bottom of the vending machine, or into a cup which can either be released by the machine or put in by the customer.
There are many different kinds of coin mechanisms, ranging from simple mechanical devices which can count the amount that has been paid by weight, up to more advanced electronic systems that may also take other kinds of payment such as credit cards or tokens. Coin mechanisms don’t just count the money that has been paid into the vending machine. They can also validate the coins to ensure they are genuine and give change, although these features may not be available in all coin mechanisms.
Coin mechanisms may also be referred to as coin validators, coin acceptors or coin mechs. Whatever the name, they all fulfil the same function of allowing a vending machine to take payment so it can dispense the products a person has chosen.