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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Garmin Grumbles

I bought my first Garmin watch a little less than a year ago.  After lots of research and talking to my runner friends and fellow coaches I decided to go with the Forerunner 110.  It was the most affordable option for me I loved everything about it.  The watch is simple and does exactly what I want it to do - basically telling me how far and how fast I am going.  I could not have been happier when I got it.


From the first time I used it though, I sensed something was wrong ... was my watch a lemon?  The connector cable was a pain and always took lots of wiggling and reattaching before the watch would begin charging or communicating with my computer.  Sometimes it was more temperamental than others.  And don't even get me started on how off it is with paces (I am walking a 5:00 minute mile?  Running a 25:00 mile?) Oh and let's talk about how long it takes to find satellites sometimes -- F O R E V E R.  But shortly after I got it I found out I was pregnant and I didn't use it to much for my pregnant runs - I didn't want to worry myself with distance or pace during pregnancy so I opted to use my Timex watch instead for those runs. 

Since returning to running after pregnancy over these last few months though, the watch has given me a lot of trouble.  On Sunday's long run I was about ready to throw the thing out.  It repeatedly (and I mean like every 30 seconds) beeped at me with the words "Lap Error" flashing over and over again for 11 miles of a 14 mile run.  It calculated my pace at anywhere from a 35:00 - 44:00 minute per mile pace.  Um, this was a slow easy pace but not THAT slow!  I ran by feel though and just tried my best not to let the beeping get to me.  Or the fact that this piece of technology I was so excited to own was simply not working the way it was supposed to.

After reading Melody's post the other day though, I was finally motivated to just call Garmin and do something about it.  The customer service rep I talked to was great.  He walked me through a software update for my watch and also is sending me a new connector cable at no charge.  He also extended my warranty for another three months and told me that if, with these fixes, my watch is still not working right I can ship it to them and they will send me a new one free of charge.  I am happy with their customer service.

Today I wore my watch on the track and it was acting wack-o again even with the software update.  Maybe once the new cable comes that will help things...I can only hope!  I'm grateful that if it doesn't improve though they will send me a new one, hopefully not a lemon!

So tell me, what Garmin do you have, if you have one?  Do you have the 110?  If so, what do you think?

4 comments:

I have never had any problems with my 110. (Knock on wood!!) I have had it for about 15 months and the only complaint is that the power cord/connector is really sensitive and I too have to wiggle/reconnect it often.

I have to say that I'm not a Garmin fan...I bought one and have only worn it a few times. And I keep hearing stories about trouble with them. But I know I'm in the minority.

I'm SO glad you were able to work this out with Garmin! Keep me posted once you get the new cord. I hope it works! :)

I use the Garmin 405 and have no complaints - I had to reset it twice when I exceeded the lap count, but that was to be expected.

I bought a pair of Brooks T6 racing sneakers and they ended up being about a half-shoe size too small (they run small apparently). I must have raced for 6 months in them, probably a summer's worth of races (~50 miles maybe) before I decided they were too small to wear. Long story short, called Brooks and they were great - sent me a new pair in the larger size and expedited the shipping to make sure I had them for a race that weekend! Best customer service story I have to share!

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