Pre-punched cards (or slot-punched cards) are plastic cards that have slot holes on either the top or the side where a badge reel, lanyard, strap, or clip can be attached. Slot holes are created using slot punches.
Printing on pre-punched cards is NOT recommended. If slot punching is necessary, the cards should only be slot punched after they have already been printed on.
Printing with pre-punched cards is ill-advised because it can cause severe damage to the printer and print media. Possible harmful consequences include:
- Broken ribbons/ribbons sticking to cards
- Improper operation of the sensors causing card jams and other problems
- Uneven, jagged edges around the punched hole can cause damage to the print head
Pre-punched cards frequently have uneven surfaces that may leave slivers of plastic in the printer. These pieces of plastic can cause significant damage to the print head. If print head damage becomes significant enough, an extremely costly replacement would be required.
Slot punching can be avoided altogether by using alternative badge display products such as badge grippers, badge holders, or clamp clips. HID carries a full line of ID Accessories that allow you to display your badge without requiring a slot punch.