Buying a Vending Machine: Essential Tips and Insights

Buying a vending machine can be a profitable business venture or a convenient addition to an existing establishment. With the right planning, selection, and maintenance, a vending machine can generate passive income and contribute to a company’s overall success. Understanding the types of vending machines available, the factors to consider before purchasing, and the differences between new and used machines can help potential buyers make informed decisions.

There are various types of vending machines to choose from, such as snack, drink, or combination machines. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the intended location and target audience. Before making a decision, consider factors such as the available space, target market, inventory selection, and maintenance costs to ensure a suitable choice. Additionally, understanding the benefits and drawbacks of new and used vending machines can help buyers choose the best option for their needs and budget.

Financing, maintenance, and navigating legal requirements all play a role in the vending machine purchasing process. Knowing the available purchasing methods, such as buying directly from manufacturers or online resellers, and identifying potential financing options can streamline the procurement process. Keeping up with regular maintenance and understanding the applicable legal and regulatory requirements contribute to the overall success and longevity of your vending machine business.

Key Takeaways

  • Choose the appropriate type of vending machine based on location and target market.
  • Consider factors such as space, inventory selection, and maintenance costs before purchasing.
  • Understand purchasing options, financing, and legal requirements for an informed decision.

The Best Vending Machines on Amazon

EPEX Beverage Combo Vending Machine with Stratified Temp Control

EPEX Beverage Combo Vending Machine

If you’re looking for a reliable and efficient vending machine for your business, the EPEX Beverage Combo Vending Machine with Stratified Temp Control is worth considering.


  • Compact design that can vend cold soda, candy, chips, and snacks.
  • “Liquid injection foam” technology guarantees the highest insulating efficiency.
  • Stratified temperature control ensures that your products are kept at the right temperature.


  • The machine is quite heavy, weighing in at 220 kg.
  • Some customers have reported issues with the bill acceptor.
  • The cashless payment system is optional, which may be a drawback for some businesses.

This vending machine is designed to be compact yet efficient, making it an ideal choice for small businesses. With its “Liquid injection foam” technology, you can be sure that your products will be kept at the right temperature, ensuring that they stay fresh for longer. The stratified temperature control also makes it easy to adjust the temperature for different products.

One of the drawbacks of this machine is its weight. At 220 kg, it may be difficult to move around, so you’ll need to make sure that you have a suitable location for it. Additionally, some customers have reported issues with the bill acceptor, which can be frustrating. Finally, the cashless payment system is optional, which may be a drawback for some businesses.

Overall, if you’re looking for a reliable and efficient vending machine for your business, the EPEX Beverage Combo Vending Machine with Stratified Temp Control is definitely worth considering. With its compact design and advanced temperature control system, it’s sure to meet your needs and keep your customers happy.

IRONWALLS Candy Vending Machine

IRONWALLS Candy Vending Machine

If you’re looking for a durable and reliable candy vending machine for your business, the IRONWALLS Candy Vending Machine is a great option.


  • The machine has 3 separate canisters with superior capacity, allowing you to stock a variety of candies and small toys.
  • It’s coin-operated, which saves energy and money, and is easy to use for both adults and kids.
  • The durable iron body and thickened iron stand make the machine strong, rust-corrosion resistant, and stable.


  • The metal backing where the money tray is located is a bit flimsy, which could make it easier for someone to steal the money.
  • Some users have reported issues with the coin mechanism, but these can be fixed with a bit of glue.
  • The machine doesn’t come with a manual or tools, which could make it difficult to assemble for some users.

This vending machine is perfect for a variety of settings, including candy stores, gaming stores, restaurants, canteens, bars, amusement parks, and shopping centers. It’s a great way to add some fun to your business and increase your profits.

The IRONWALLS Candy Vending Machine is equipped with dual locks on the one-piece top lid and a single lock for the coin box, making it easy to replenish and maintain while also keeping your goods and money safe. The wide application of this gumball machine with stand makes it a versatile option for any business.

Overall, if you’re looking for a reliable and durable candy vending machine, the IRONWALLS Candy Vending Machine is a great choice. With its superior capacity and easy-to-use coin-operated system, it’s sure to be a hit with both kids and adults alike.

EPEX Combo Vending Machine

EPEX Combo Vending Machine

If you’re looking for a compact vending machine that can vend cold soda, candy, chips, and snacks, then the EPEX Combo Vending Machine is worth considering.


  • Dual temperature zones to keep your drinks and snacks at the perfect temperature
  • Pull-out refrigeration deck for easy maintenance and repair
  • Adjustable tray spacing to accommodate different product sizes


  • Limited capacity with only 32 selections
  • No credit card reader included, must be purchased separately
  • Relatively heavy at 470 pounds, making it difficult to move once installed

The EPEX Combo Vending Machine is a great option for small businesses or locations with limited space. The dual temperature zones ensure that your drinks and snacks are always at the perfect temperature, while the pull-out refrigeration deck makes maintenance and repair a breeze. The adjustable tray spacing also allows you to accommodate different product sizes, making it a versatile option.

However, the machine does have some limitations. With only 32 selections, its capacity is relatively limited compared to other vending machines on the market. Additionally, while the machine is MDB and DEX-ready, a credit card reader must be purchased separately. Finally, the machine is relatively heavy at 470 pounds, making it difficult to move once it has been installed.

The EPEX Combo Vending Machine is a solid option for those looking for a compact vending machine with dual temperature zones and easy maintenance. However, if you need a machine with more capacity or a built-in credit card reader, you may want to consider other options.

Candy Vending Machine for Small Candy, Nuts, Feed by American Gumball Company BARREL GLOBE SHAPE

Candy Vending Machine

If you’re looking for a reliable and sturdy vending machine for small candies, nuts, or feed, the Candy Vending Machine by American Gumball Company is a great option.


  • Accepts both USA and Canadian quarters
  • High security barrel lock
  • Adjustable candy wheel for small loose candy, nuts, or feed


  • Cheaper made compared to other products
  • Sometimes doesn’t dispense
  • Flimsy plastic base

This vending machine is designed with a high-security barrel lock, ensuring that your candies and nuts are safe and secure. Additionally, the adjustable candy wheel allows you to easily control the amount of candy or nuts that are dispensed.

While this vending machine is cheaper compared to other products, it still functions well and is perfect for those who are on a budget. However, some users have reported issues with dispensing and a flimsy plastic base.

Overall, if you’re looking for a reliable and affordable vending machine for small candies, nuts, or feed, the Candy Vending Machine by American Gumball Company is a great option.

Global Gumball Vending Machine

Global Gumball Vending Machine

If you’re looking for a versatile vending machine that can dispense both candy and gumballs, the Global Gumball Vending Machine might be a good choice for you.


  • The machine has three separate canisters, allowing you to offer a wider variety of products and potentially increase your profits.
  • The all-metal construction and shatterproof polycarbonate canisters make the machine durable and long-lasting.
  • The adjustable dispensing wheels give you control over the amount of product dispensed, allowing you to optimize your profits.


  • Some customers have reported difficulty assembling the machine, and there are no instructions included on how to adjust the flow mechanism.
  • The machine only accepts US or Canadian 25 cent coins, which may limit your customer base.
  • There have been reports of the screws and locks becoming stripped, making it difficult to access the coin boxes and refill the canisters.

Overall, if you’re willing to put in the effort to assemble and maintain the machine, the Global Gumball Vending Machine could be a good investment for your vending business.

Types of Vending Machines

Snack Vending Machines

Snack vending machines are one of the most popular and widely used types of vending machines. They typically offer a variety of snack options such as chips, chocolate bars, candy, and granola bars. These machines are ideal for locations with high foot traffic and cater to people looking for a quick snack on the go. Snack vending machines come in different sizes and capacities, with some offering multiple rows and selections for more variety.

Beverage Vending Machines

Beverage vending machines provide a range of drink options including soda, bottled water, juice, and energy drinks. They come in various sizes and configurations, with some offering both canned and bottled beverages. These machines are typically found in office buildings, schools, and public spaces where people need to quench their thirst quickly and conveniently. Some beverage vending machines also offer hot drinks such as coffee, tea, and hot chocolate.

Combination Vending Machines

Combination vending machines, also known as combo vending machines, offer the versatility of providing both snacks and beverages in a single machine. These machines are perfect for locations where space is limited and there is a demand for both snack and drink options. With combo vending machines, users can choose from an array of snack and beverage choices without having to visit multiple machines. They often come with advanced features like touchscreen displays and customizable product selections.

Specialty Vending Machines

Specialty vending machines cater to specific needs or niche markets. These machines can offer items that are unique, not found in traditional snack and beverage vending machines. Examples include gumball machines, ice cream vending machines, and even machines that dispense electronics such as headphones and charging cables. Specialty vending machines can be found in locations where the products offered are particularly relevant or in demand, such as airports, gyms, and entertainment centers.

Factors to Consider Before Buying

Buying a vending machine is an important decision for any business owner or entrepreneur. There are several factors to consider in order to make an informed decision. In this section, we will discuss budget, location, and product selection.


The budget plays a crucial role when choosing a vending machine. There are various types of machines available, each with a different price range. Consider how much you can invest and then research vending machines within that budget. Keep in mind that your investment doesn’t end with the initial purchase. Also, consider the costs of maintenance, stocking, and other necessary supplies. Look for good wholesale companies to purchase products at discounted rates, which can help you save money in the long run1.


Finding the right location for your vending machine is critical to its success. Accessibility and visibility are important factors that can attract more customers and increase sales. The location should also have an adequate amount of foot traffic2. Measure the space available for the vending machine and choose a machine that fits well within those dimensions3. Remember to place your machine in a safe area and take necessary steps to protect it from vandalism and theft.

Product Selection

Determine the type of products you want to offer in your vending machine. The selection greatly depends on your target audience and the location. For example, healthy food options might be more suitable for machines placed in gyms, whereas snack and beverage machines are ideal for public spaces4.

Consider a combination of snack and drink machines to cater to a diverse set of consumers5. If you plan to offer perishable items like salads or sandwiches, ensure that the vending machine has proper temperature control and refrigeration. For coffee vending machines, pay attention to the product footprint and the required area6.

By carefully considering budget, location, and product selection, you can make smarter choices when buying a vending machine for your business.

New vs. Used Vending Machines

Pros and Cons of New Machines


  • Warranty: New vending machines typically come with a warranty of six to twelve months, offering peace of mind and protection against potential issues.
  • Latest technology: New machines come equipped with the latest technology and features, making them more user-friendly and efficient.
  • Low maintenance: Purchasing a new machine means it’s less likely to require significant repairs or maintenance in the early stages of ownership.


  • Higher initial cost: New vending machines can be quite expensive, with prices ranging from $2,000 to $10,000 depending on the type, brand, and features.

Pros and Cons of Used Machines


  • Lower upfront cost: Used vending machines are generally less expensive than their new counterparts, making them more accessible for those on a tight budget.
  • Proven functionality: A used machine has already been tested and shown to work, potentially making them a reliable option for businesses who are willing to perform some maintenance if needed.


  • Limited or no warranty: Most used machines come with little to no warranty, meaning any repairs or issues will need to be handled at the owner’s expense.
  • Possible outdated technology: Used machines may not have the most recent updates and features, which could negatively impact user experience and efficiency.
  • Potential for costly repairs: As with any used equipment, there’s an increased risk of needing repairs or replacements for worn-out parts, leading to additional costs.

Purchasing Options

When it comes to buying a vending machine, there are several options to choose from. In this section, we’ll discuss four main avenues: direct from the manufacturer, through a distributor, online marketplaces, and local sellers.

Direct from Manufacturer

Purchasing a vending machine directly from the manufacturer is a reliable and efficient option. Manufacturers often provide warranty and maintenance services, ensuring their machines will stand the test of time. By working closely with the manufacturer, you can also customize your vending machine to better fit the needs of your specific niche or location.

Through a Distributor

Another option is to source your vending machine through a certified distributor. This can give you access to a wider range of machines from multiple manufacturers. Distributors can assist in delivery, installation, and maintenance services, making the overall process seamless and more straightforward.

Online Marketplaces

Online marketplaces, such as, offer a vast selection of vending machines for sale, including both new and pre-owned models. These platforms allow you to search based on price, location, and machine type, making it easier to find a machine that fits your specific requirements. While purchasing from an online marketplace may require additional research and vigilance in checking the machine’s condition, it can save money compared to buying new from a manufacturer or distributor.

Local Sellers

Lastly, consider exploring local sellers in your area. Oftentimes, local business owners who are upgrading or closing their operations may have vending machines for sale at a reasonable price. In such cases, you can inspect the machine in person and quickly begin operations within your locality, saving on delivery and installation costs.

In conclusion, there are several purchasing options available for those looking to buy a vending machine. Taking the time to research and weigh the pros and cons of each method can greatly assist in making an informed decision.

Financing Your Vending Machine

Deciding to buy a vending machine is a significant investment for many businesses and entrepreneurs. Thankfully, there are financing options available that can make this decision more affordable and accessible.

One popular financing option is offered by, which claims to be the largest in-house financier of vending equipment worldwide. They offer custom-tailored financing arrangements to suit any type and size of operation. This flexibility ensures that businesses can scale their vending operations according to their needs and financial capacity.

Another useful resource is, which has partnered with Klarna to provide simple and fast Buy Now, Pay Later options. With instant decisions and multiple payment options available, entrepreneurs can start making a profit from their vending machines without the initial burden of a full purchase price.

eVending offers a secure application process for buying new and used vending machines, making it easy and convenient for businesses to enter the vending industry. Their financing options cater to a range of vending machine types, including combo drink and snack machines.

Lastly, Allied Vending also provides financing with zero down, working with Klarna to offer a safe and secure purchasing experience. Available through their app or website, Klarna enables customers to view their purchases and pay any outstanding balances with ease.

In summary, various financing options are available for businesses and entrepreneurs looking to enter the vending machine industry. Each provider offers different payment plans and terms, ensuring that there is a solution that caters to everyone’s needs.

Maintenance and Repairs

Regular maintenance and servicing are essential for ensuring the longevity and efficiency of your vending machine. Proper care can help you minimize downtime, prevent expensive repairs, and maintain a steady revenue stream. In general, the first visit or two for maintenance should occur after 2 weeks, depending on the machine type and usage frequency. After gaining insights into the sales rate and inventory management, you can predict the ideal waiting time between service appointments 1.

One crucial aspect of maintenance is upgrading the lighting in your machine. Replacing old fluorescent bulbs with LED strips can give your products a more 3D look and improve sales by attracting potential buyers, as the different color light transforms the appearance of the items inside the machine 2. Besides ensuring optimum lighting, it is important to keep the machine clean and hygienic, both inside and out. This can involve routine wiping of surfaces, vacuuming, and disinfecting high-touch areas.

When it comes to repairs, vending machine services offer diagnostic and repair support for various manufacturers, including USI, Fawn, Federal Machines, National, Dixie Narco, Rowe, Vendo, Vendnet, AMS, FastCorp, Automatic Products, Selectavend, Seaga, Royal, and Crane3. Repair technicians typically charge on an hourly basis, with additional costs for any replacement parts required4. It is prudent to invest in regular machine check-ups to identify potential issues before they escalate and become more costly to fix.

In summary, maintenance and repairs are vital components of owning and operating a vending machine business. Prioritizing regular upkeep, updating lighting systems, and working with professional technicians can help ensure your machine’s long-term performance and profitability.

Vending Machine Technology

Vending machines have come a long way in recent years, with advancements in technology making them more efficient, user-friendly, and profitable. One such innovation is smart vending machines, which use technology to store and track inventory data. This allows operators to know exactly when to refill their machines and with which products, greatly improving efficiency and reducing waste.

In addition to inventory management, another notable feature of modern vending machines is their payment systems. Most machines now offer multiple payment options for convenience, such as cash, debit or credit cards, and even contactless payments like Apple Pay. This helps attract a wider range of customers, increasing revenue potential.

Moreover, vending machines today come with touchscreen displays, introducing a new level of interaction for consumers. Touchscreen technology allows users to make informed purchasing decisions by providing them with detailed product information before the point of purchase. This added transparency can lead to improved customer satisfaction and loyalty over time.

Finally, one should also consider the longevity of the vending machine. Based on factors such as the type of goods, location, maintenance, and technology used, vending machines can have lifespans ranging from 5 to 15 years. It is crucial to factor in these considerations when investing in a vending machine, as they will ultimately impact overall profitability.

In summary, the technology used in vending machines has come a long way, offering numerous benefits to both operators and consumers. From inventory management and payment options to touchscreen displays and longevity, these advancements have made modern vending machines more efficient and lucrative than ever before.

Navigating Legal and Regulatory Requirements

Entering the vending machine business requires an understanding of the legal and regulatory requirements across different jurisdictions. Before buying a vending machine, one should be aware of the necessary licenses and permits required to operate legally. These requirements often depend on the location and the products being sold in the vending machine.

Licenses and permits are often required at the federal, state, and local levels. For instance, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published the final rule on Food Labeling; Calorie Labeling of Articles of Food in Vending Machines in 2014. This rule mandates that vending machines operators must provide contact information for machines selling covered vending machine food.

State regulations also play a significant role in the legality of vending machine operations. For example, in Arkansas, vending machines are regulated by the Arkansas State Board of Health, and a license is required to operate machines that sell food or beverages. In California, the California Department of Public Health regulates vending machines, and operators also need a license for machines selling food or beverages.

Local ordinances can further impact the operation of vending machines, with different regulations based on the products being vended. It is crucial to check your local ordinances when planning to start a vending machine business, as permits and licenses may be required by local authorities.

In summary, navigating the legal and regulatory requirements of buying and operating a vending machine involves understanding federal, state, and local regulations. Prospective vending machine operators should be aware of the licenses, permits, and rules that apply to their specific location and the products they plan to sell.


Investing in a vending machine business can be a profitable venture if executed wisely. The industry has evolved significantly over the years, with machines now offering a wider variety of products and services. Some well-placed vending machines can even earn $100 a week or more. However, there are several factors to consider when entering this business.

Firstly, identifying the right location for the vending machines is crucial, as it heavily influences the potential revenue. High foot-traffic areas and commercial businesses are ideal for placing the machines. For instance, office locations might see $1.50 per person, per week, while blue-collar workplaces could generate $3-$6 per person, per week.

It is essential to maintain a consistent and reliable vending machine business. Regular servicing, stocking, and cleaning of the machines can enhance the customer experience, prompting repeat usage. Moreover, stocking popular and in-demand items attracts more consumers and increases profits.

In some cases, buying an existing vending machine business can be beneficial. This method allows entrepreneurs to capitalize on the initial success of the previous owner, but it also requires significant research and legwork.

Finally, the vending machine business is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. It requires a thorough analysis of the target market, strategic positioning, and ongoing efforts in marketing and maintenance. By taking these factors into account, entrepreneurs can maximize their chance for success in the vending machine industry.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average price of a vending machine?

The cost of a vending machine varies depending on its size, features, and type. Generally, snack and drink machines range from $3,000 to $5,000. However, vending machines can be free when using a full-service program, where operators install and maintain the equipment at no cost.

How much will I need to start my vending machine business?

Starting a vending machine business requires initial investments, such as purchasing machines and inventory. The cost of a machine can be between $3,000 and $5,000, but additional funds should be set aside for inventory, maintenance, permits, and transportation. Overall, it’s wise to have a starting budget of approximately $10,000 to $20,000.

Are vending machines expensive to run?

Operating costs for vending machines are relatively low. Expenses primarily include stocking the machine, maintenance, and electricity. Some machines can be energy-efficient, helping to reduce electricity costs. Additionally, credit card readers may have fees associated with their use.

Can you buy a vending machine and put it anywhere?

Placement of a vending machine is subject to local permitting and zoning laws, as well as property owners’ permission. Ideally, the machine should be placed in high-traffic areas to ensure a customer base. It’s essential to research local regulations and secure agreements with property owners before placing the vending machine.

Where can I find used vending machines for sale?

Used vending machines can be found online through various websites and auction platforms. Additionally, some vending machine manufacturers and distributors offer refurbished machines at a lower cost. It’s crucial to research the machine’s condition, functionality, and maintenance history before purchasing a used vending machine.

How much does a vending machine make a month?

The monthly income from a vending machine depends on factors such as location, product selection, and pricing. Highly trafficked locations can lead to higher earnings. On average, a vending machine might make between $50 and $100 per month, but exceptional locations could see earnings of several hundred dollars source.

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