Caring For Black Strips & Chips On Credit & Debit Cards

by wrylilt

Bank cards can easily be damaged or have issues even from the day you receive them. Here are some tips on how to keep them in working condition or fix them.

Credit and debit cards are becoming a big part of everyday life for most people. In fact, many people don't even carry or use cash anymore.
Of course this means that if a card doesn't work, the person can be stuck without funds until they can either get their card fixed, replaced or get some cash. This guide will help you care for your cards and repair some damaged ones.

Most People Use Bank Cards Now
Most People Use Bank Cards Now

Caring For Your Chip Credit Cards

Many of the new design embedded chip credit cards have been rolled out around the world. The cards still have a black magnetic strip which can be used either when the machine is not able to accept chip cards or when the chip doesn't work. Of course it's a good idea to keep your chip safe. Here are some tips:

  •  Try to avoid bending or rubbing the chip.
  •  If you're a male, make sure that the press stud on your wallet isn't digging into the chip when you sit down with your wallet in your back pocket.

Caring For Black Strip & Other Types of Cards

It's important to keep all your cards safe and undamaged so they work properly - they are like cash, after all. Here are some tips to make sure they stay safe:

  •  Store each card separately in your wallet or purse so they don't rub against each other.
  •  Keep cards away from magnetic objects such as car stereos to stop them being de-magnetised.
  •  Don't bend or sit on your purse/wallet.
  •  Don't force or jam cards into anything.

How To Fix a Broken Black Strip Card

Cards with black magnetic stripes are still an important part of day to day business. Even cards that have chips on them still have the black stripe as a back up. Of course older cards can be worn and may not always register information when you're attempting to pay for something. Here are two tips to make them work:

  •  Wrap the card in a thin plastic bag and then swipe it through the machine.
  •  Cover the black stripe in a piece of sticky tape then swipe. Please note that if you're using this method, you should remove the sticky tape within a few days, otherwise the tape can pull off the information on the magnetic strip when you need to remove it.

Other Tips For Using Broken/Dodgy Cards

Older cards can easily get worn or damaged even when you give them the best care possible. There are some easy tricks to make sure your card works when you're at the register next time:

  • Swipe the card up, instead of down.
  • Swipe the card straight and fast. Slow swipes often don't work as well.
  • Wipe the card gently on a non-static material before use.

Do You Prefer Cards That Use a Chip or Black Strip for Payment?

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I much prefer the black strip!
J Faulkner on 08/13/2015

I prefer the strip as the chip requires you to put your card in the reader and leave it to read and I am more likely to forget ad leave the card where as strip you swipe it and the card stays in your hand. Chips have the capability of more private info to be kept on them.

Jimmie on 01/28/2012

I am so unaware of this issue altogether. I need to look at my cards.

Updated: 01/28/2012, wrylilt
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blackspanielgallery on 07/24/2015

I find that sometimes the cards can pick up dust, and can be wiped off, and other times they can be so damaged as to require replacement.

Jimmie on 01/28/2012

I've never damaged a strip that I know of, but I have seen people in a store using the plastic bag technique you recommend here. It worked!

Angel on 01/27/2012

I have damaged the black strip on a few cards in the past. Very good information on how to repair them.

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