American Changer AC2002 review – do not buy it

I had a terrible experience with a year-old AC2002 dual hopper, dual validator change machine from American Changer.  Here’s my review: if you’re considering a bill changer unfortunately I cannot recommend the AC2002.

I did a lot of research before buying this front load, high security $3,000 change machine. And initially I was pretty happy.  I like the idea of having fail-overs so the change keeps rolling, and this one has two hoppers and two validators.

So I was disappointed when one of the Pyramid validators in my AC 2002 change machine failed in less than a year.  That’s a low-quality validator that I won’t ever be using again.

I took this as a chance to upgrade to a higher quality Mars AE2600 validator, which the AC2002 manual available directly from American Changer’s installation instruction page clearly states I can use on pages 17 and 33.

Here’s where the story went south.  I bought an AE2600 and when I tried to install it, it wouldn’t fit.  At all.  I went over to my local vending machine experts but they didn’t have the right parts.

So I figured I’d call the manufacturer.  I gave them the serial number and model of my machine, explained my problem, and waited for at least 20 minutes while the guy there tried to figure out the problem.  He eventually said I needed a metal bezel support plate, charged me $175 and sent two.  Never mind that the support plates were more than I paid for the validator.

A few days later it arrived. Only it didn’t work.  So I make another call to American Changer.  I talk to the same guy and he doesn’t believe me.  I ended up spending a very frustrating 40 minutes on the phone, sending him pictures to prove that it wasn’t fitting right.

So the guy sends another support plate out.  Guess what?  That one didn’t fit either! Imagine my frustration.

I call in again and this time I talk to someone else.  They say, oh, you need a new DOOR!  A new door?  Are you kidding me? So I get redirected to the guy I talked to twice before who proceeds to tell me that he already told me I needed another door.  I’m like, really? At no time did you ever say such a thing. Your manual says no such thing. It’s ridiculous.

So I shell out another $165 for a door – and get this – it has no decals on it.  They want another $100 for a sticker.  Really?  I order the blank door figuring that it won’t work anyway.

So they ship this thing out to me.  It has a few more holes than my AC2002 door does, but okay let’s see if it fits.

Can you guess the result? THE VALIDATOR STILL DOESN’T FIT.  Well done, American Changer.  Zero for three.

Also I found a decal for $55 online, which is still outrageous but it’s half what the manufacturer was charging. So there’s that.

Moral of the story: don’t buy from American Changer.

I’ll update this if anything changes.

Brian Jamison Portland Oregon