It might be time to consider printing more information on your car wash coupons. As one man in Union City, California, fervently argued: Expiration dates sometimes need to be more clearly stated. When issuing a prepaid wash or any similar deal it may seem obvious to include the date of expiration in some form on one of the covers. But the information you provide might not be as useful as you think.

When San Francisco Bay Area resident David Lin attempted to use his prepaid car wash exactly on the date of expiration, he learned that he was actually too late. According to an article posted by NBC, the expiration date on the receipt printed at the time of purchase stated May 20 — 14 days after the printing of the ticket. When he arrived at the Shell gas station to receive his car wash, the station’s system told him it was too late.

When Lin didn’t have any success contacting the local franchise, he made a complaint to Shell corporate, only to be turned back to his local establishment. The reason he was declined, they argued, was because the computer system registered his ticket purchase at exactly 25 seconds past 2:47 p.m., making the time of expiration exactly that, 14 days later, rather than the midnight hour that David had assumed.

When reaching out to the company for reimbursement of his $9, David had no success until he contacted NBC Bay Area to report the situation. After Lin had contacted NBC, the local franchise reached out to him to offer a complete refund. The manager later told NBC that he “immediately called him…right away,” and that, “[he] was more than happy to help him.” David, a lawyer himself, thinks that the car wash should include the exact time of expiration if the expiration is subject to a specific time.

Though the local lawyer was unsuccessful in reaching through to Shell corporate, his point stands as a way to limit hassle on the part of both car wash owners and patrons. Noting exact policy on promotions like car wash coupons or coupon books could save a lot of trouble in the future.

If you’re interested in learning about affordable car wash coupon books for your business, contact Wolford Communications.