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Any Problems With Garmin Etrex Series?


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Hi, folks.

 

Has anyone had any problems with Garmin etrex series GPSrs?

I've have a Vista for about 18 months now, and have recently become aware of a number of niggles, both in constructional quality and in operation.

 

Firstly, the 'operational' problems:

On a number of occasions, on power-up the location has been innacurate - putting me somewhere about 200 miles off the western coast of Portugal rather than in NW England, and giving my speed as something in excess of 1000mph (!). This suggests a 'software' type problem, to me.

 

Occasionally, the unit will turn itself off, for no apparent reason (batteries good).

 

Occasionally the display will become garbled, or have vertical lines running down it - a power on-off cycle returns things to normal.

 

Now the constructional problems:

 

When I bought my Garmin 12V power/data lead, it would not fit into the 'socket' on the rear of the unit - I had to carve a small amount of the plastic case (of the GPSr) away in order to get it to fit.

 

Recently, the glue used to stick the rubber 'bump strip' around the edge of the unit has started to ooze out, resulting in a slimy mess on the sides of the GPSr.

 

The rubber flap covering the data/power 'socket' has started to tear.

 

Has anyone else experienced similar problems with the etrex series, or is it just me that's got a 'Friday afternoon lemon'?

 

Cheers,

 

G.

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I am glad its not me thats going mad then. (Or madder ;) )

 

My yellow Etrex (two and a bit years old) has been having funny five minutes for the last couple of months. Last sunday it gave the speed of my Discovery as something just over 1100 MPH whilst driving on the A30 over Bodmin moor (Luckily no Speed cameras around ;) )

 

It also just turns off when walking around with it. Driving me mad

 

I have just purchased a 60CS, so I am going to nip into Garmin within the next month with the etrex to see what they say and if they can fix it.

 

Would like to get it fixed so the wife can use it.

 

Mike

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Hi there,

Check the garmin web site for software updates for YOUR gps. I've got an etrex legend it to kept turning off, the latest software update claimed to fix that and a few other problems. Downloaded the update from their web site and uploaded it to my gps...... it did what it said on the can... no problems now.

 

Hope this works for you.

 

Mart

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Occasionally, the unit will turn itself off, for no apparent reason (batteries good).

I'd check that the battery terminals are tight up to the battery when they are fitted. If there is a slight chance that they lose touch for a moment, it'll switch off.

 

As Mike says, I got my rubber strip (gasket) fixed at Garmin repair centre, when I visited Romsey, but I could have sent it to them for a 3 week turnaround in the post. They never asked me when I bought the eTrex, and they admitted that the glue they used in the early days wasn't right. They now use better glue and will replace the rubber gasket around the edge.

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I've got a yellow eTrex and a Vista. Famous last words I know, but I've never had a problem with either. I make sure I've got the latest firmware uploaded and I take it easy with the toggle on the Vista as I've read that they are prone to problems.

 

(I've got a Forerunner 201 that packed up after the first charge. I sent it off to Garmin and they replaced it - but the turnaround was about 6 weeks.)

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My 18 month old Legend really is the Donkey's knob... It's been dropped, abused left in fields, rained on and on one occasion it bounced 50 feet down a steep, rocky slope. It's still working, intact, stuck together and reliable. I wouldn't swap it for a 60CS if someone offered me one.... oh.. alright, maybe I would ;)

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Sometimes the little wiggle stick on my Venture doesnt seem to accept a left flick, but I found just pressing the stick down and left clears that and it works again.

 

Everything else works great, never had and weirdness other that it turning itself off a few times one day, though I was driving around Kruger National Park in S Africa at the time in 40C heat so that probably caused it.

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My 2 year old Vista mostly behaves - but occasionally the display show bars or buttons fail to work. A sharp tap on the side puts it right. There was some correspondance some time ago on the forum about a small mod which Garmin supplied on request as teh trouble appears to be poor contact with certain types of battery but as the aforesaid smart tap seems to work I have not bothered. As for the softening of the glue fixing the surround that is a different matter.

As far as I'm concerned it is still a great piece of kit.

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My Vista does pretty much everything yours does, problem-wise that is.

 

For mine, if the batteries get low or replaced, it can lose it's sense of direction pointing in all sorts of directions and distances. Fresh Batteries and recalibrating the compass takes care of it.

 

The lines on the screen are due to a bad connection within the unit. You can give it a solid thump, send it in for repairs ($$$) or fix it yourself, not really recommended but I could find the instructions if you need them.

 

The powering down can also be a symptom of the bad internal connection, the screen is actually blank not powered down. Or it could be a bad connection to the battery terminals.

 

Other than that, I love my Vista!

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I have a Summit and an eMap.

 

I too have encountered the crazy speed and location too. I think what happens is that it receives some corrupt telemetry and then thinks you are travelling ultra fast between the bad fix and the correct fix. When I have had this happen it has always rectified itself though and it is only ever at power on.

 

I have also had a corrupt screen on my eMap once or twice. As you suggested a 'reboot' fixes it. If this is happening often then it could point to a fault with your program memory.

 

Think of a GPSr as a computer. Sometimes they will crash for no apparent reason.

 

Garmins customer service is superb. I managed to smash the lcd in my Summit a year or so ago. The Summit was in Warranty but I admitted to dropping it and they swapped it no quibbles.

 

I keep up-to-date with GPRs firmware releases from Garmin and in the later releases have not had any of these issues.

 

I will always buy Garmin and I am totally satified with the product and the level of service. (I do not work for them by the way ;-) )

 

Chris

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Well after another lovely weekend in the New Forest camping and Caching B) , We visited the Garmin site in Romsey with the errant Yellow Etrex.

 

Passed it over to the guy who came out to see us explaining that it kept turning itself off for no apparent reason and also having funny five minutes telling me I am exceeding 1,000MPH. ;)

 

He returned about five minutes later with a new unit for us at no charge! :P

 

Having visited the Romsey site three times now and having had the problem units I have taken there fixed or replaced whilst I waited with no charge at all. I am well impressed with the Garmin aftersales service. B)

 

On another note.

Having tried out my new 60CS properly for the first time over the weekend, I am well chuffed with it and would definately reccomend to anyone thinking about buying one to go for it. B):D

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My Vista does pretty much everything yours does, problem-wise that is.

 

For mine, if the batteries get low or replaced, it can lose it's sense of direction pointing in all sorts of directions and distances. Fresh Batteries and recalibrating the compass takes care of it.

 

The lines on the screen are due to a bad connection within the unit. You can give it a solid thump, send it in for repairs ($$$) or fix it yourself, not really recommended but I could find the instructions if you need them.

 

The powering down can also be a symptom of the bad internal connection, the screen is actually blank not powered down. Or it could be a bad connection to the battery terminals.

 

Other than that, I love my Vista!

Is the click stick problem fixed with the thumb too? :tired:

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