Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Garmin nuvi 1490 LMT. This car navigation unit has been very satisfactory: my only problem was that on my first update of the included lifetime maps, I needed to buy and install a micro SD card because the internal memory is too small. Since then updates have never been a problem. I have used it for many trips down the east coast of the USA and its traffic alerts have saved me numerous delays. Only once have I been directed to a road that did not exist (in Winchester VA). Only once did I lose the GPS signal (under bridges in New York City). I would not start a trip without it. If I get another unit, it will be a Garmin. I bought this unit from Costco in April 2012. Its retail price was $140.
I purchased the Vivosmart fitness device at the end of March. I liked the sleek design and the comfort of wearing it while working out. The product is designed to track swimming as well as various other activities. I wore it for a leisure swim in shallow pool water on 2 occasions. Slowly the device was becoming more and more difficult to read. I did not wear it swimming or in the shower since noticing that the display was shrinking. Now, it is October and I can no longer even read the time on the device. We attempted to contact Garmin while the device was still under the 90 day warranty. We were unsuccessful. They were supposed to send us a number to use when returning the device. Despite several attempts, we have not heard back from them. Checking customer support, the device can now be repaired (it is out of warranty) for $79.00. Are you kidding??!! I will just buy a new Fitbit.
Garmin makes some nice GPS devices but they don't appear to be very responsive to customer complaints and they don't make some options customer configurable. Case in point, my GPS Nuvi 68LM, has an annoying audible alert every time we approach a school. While some may find that to be a nice feature, I don't but there is no way to turn it off. By now you would think that customer choice on options would be standard for just about any electronic device.
Updating maps on a Garmin is a mess, they only support an obsolete browser (I.E.). I got by that after wasting half an hour with tech support, but the updated map I downloaded (for North America) broke the unit. That partly ruined a holiday with the routing messing up constantly and it constantly having to be rebooted (wonderful when driving through strange cities and it has taken you on absurd routes through the 'worst sections' of town). Finally after multiple reinstalls and time with tech support it started working again. Then the big mess, I went to the U.K and paid $100 for the U.K. maps. Nothing worked after that install, it could not even find satellites in an open field let alone route me anywhere. Their tech support does not work weekends and I was not going half way across a strange (to me) country without GPS. I was fed up and got a phone application that works.
They told me there is no possibility of a refund, they said simply they would help me fix it. I asked how I can fix something I cannot use here in North America. Silence from tech support in reply. I wasted most of $200 and caused significant harm to 2 holidays. I will never use a Garmin again, they used to make a decent GPS but they are a broken product these days both in function and customer support. BTW I'm not complaining about tech support, they were helpful but they are dealing with a deeply flawed product and support rules that are little short of contempt for the customer.
I have attempted on several occasions to download Canada street maps to this cycling computer with absolutely no luck. The download site is not user friendly and I had to backtrack a number of times to get to checkout. The address info would not let me plug in my Province without re-setting the entire form and I was then advised that Chrome would not support the download. Shortly thereafter, I found that I apparently could not obtain the Canada maps in Canada. I generally find Garmin product instructions to be obtuse and difficult and I will now shop for another brand.
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I bought this unit to replace an older TomTom unit that I had. It has worked OK around town. However, we are just planning a trip back to the midwest, so I tried updating the maps. The unit just shuts itself off in the middle of the update. Looking on the internet, I found this is a common problem with no real workaround. Then, to my surprise, this Garmin unit couldn't find the town I was headed for and since, according to its own information, there is no town there, it couldn't even find the cross streets for the town. I grabbed my old TomTom unit (it's about 10 years old and I never purchased any map upgrades) and it found the town right away. I'm heading out to buy a new TomTom and this Garmin is heading for the garbage can. It is USELESS!!
I have tried for hours to download maps I purchased from Garmin. Their software doesn't work with Microsoft Edge, so I needed to try to find/use Internet Explorer. Total disaster, even after I followed all the hacks they listed on their site and spent 20 minutes online with tech support. Their recommendation was to find a Mac and use that! I actually did that and everything worked, except the file would ALWAYS bomb out at 50%, reset to zero and not provide any error messages or feedback to the user.
Normally, Garmin is great. In this case, this is the worst customer experience I've had with any software/hardware provider. Don't waste your money on the eTrec equipment. If you can't get maps for a handheld GPS intended to cross country navigation, why waste the time and money? Get lost in the woods. You'll have more fun.
Years ago, I had one of the first Garmin running watches and was very satisfied with it. Within the last year, I bought a Garmin Forerunner 25, and it is horrible. I have had difficulty with it off and on since I bought it, usually with syncing. My most recent problem with syncing is that I kept getting an error message that it couldn't sync my activity to Garmin Connect. I was on my PC, so I tried syncing to my Android. That said the sync was successful, but it wasn't. I was unable to sync later activities until I deleted the file from today, which is the most critical workout I have done all summer. I strongly recommend that you not buy a Garmin Forerunner 25.
I had two Garmin Nuvi 2797LM. One feature that I use frequently is the Find Place under the Voice Command application. One of my Nuvi 2797 was crushed so I replaced it. I was shocked to find that my new one no longer allowed the Find Place option to function "This Feature is not available for the United States in American English". I updated my older Garmin Nuvi 2797LM and the feature still works on it. My guess is that Garmin wasted resources on adding Australian English "Garmin Real Directions" & British English "Garmin Real Directions" in male and female format for a total of 4 new sets. If it were possible I would clone the features for the Voice Location Finder and dump the two new "Garmin Real Directions". It already had one "Garmin Real Directions" so I don't need the other 4.
In the beginning Garmin was great, it was the best you could buy. Well, now it's useless. I have three Garmin devices, my first one carried maps for the whole western world. I even gave directions to my taxi driver whenever I visited the United States. Now, my latest device has so many pretty pictures of motorway junctions that the best my maps can cover is part of Central Europe. The memory is too small and any memory upgrades fall flat on their face. Garmin, be practical, give people maps, not pretty pictures.
I recently traveled through Canada and Italy. I contacted Garmin before the trip and purchased for $160.00 upgrades for these areas. I got to both areas, and neither of them worked. I contacted Garmin from the road and they were of little or no help---they claimed I either installed it wrong, or didn't know what I was doing (nothing was their fault). They said to send it back---which was ridiculous since I was on the road in Northern Italy. That was the extent of their help. I resorted to my little screen Apple I-phone and it worked! When I got home, I complained to Garmin customer service and they didn't even respond. And, of course, never a mention of a refund or credit. My advice: my techie wife tells me there are much better alternatives to Garmin and hopefully have some adequate customer service (unlike Garmin).
I believe it is the connection that keeps going in and out. It shuts off while I'm driving. It's the SAME problem with every damn Garmin I've ever owned. I'm sure it won't happen again because it will be one cold day in hell before I buy anything with the name Garmin on it.
I bought a Vivoactive to use for my heart rate training for my first Half Iron Man race. I entered my heart rates for both my running and cycling and everything was going along fine until Garmin decided to do an update to Connect Mobile that did away with the heart rate for the cycling. I emailed them with little response back so I decided to call. I was very disappointed with the answer I received. The tech actually tested the device while on a bike and called me back stating that yes the option was no longer there.
He then proceeded to tell me that if I look at my manual there is a small disclaimer stating that I may not always have all the options that I currently have. He stated he would ask tech support about the possibility of adding this feature back but there was no guarantee. So basically I have a watch that is not going to be of any use on my cycling. I don't understand why it would be so difficult to just add the feature back. This is one disappointed Garmin user.
Bought a dashboard GPS with lifetime maps... Lifetime maps cost as much as the GPS... Discontinued that style of update. So I was stuck with a GPS that would not update which I paid for... I called and was told "I would have to buy another GPS that would upgrade." Plus I would have to buy the upgrade maps again... I asked for a refund and was told they would give me 10 % off a new product... Don't buy Garmin. They got you. They got me!!!
The IDEA of it is great. Does it work as well as they sell you on? If you are a HUGE business, sure it might, but not without a lot of work to decipher all their graphs, skim through activity one grueling minute at a time, and click on hundreds to thousands of bubbles INDIVIDUALLY to engage with people. If you are a small company, forget it. This service will be a complete waste of money. Not to mention they will say whatever they need to to trick you into a contract and then bind you to it for an entire year. I dislike a lot. I dislike that they don't send invoices at all before you are charged and if you try to access invoices in your account, don't worry you can't because they don't exist there.
I dislike that we were told we had a 30-day no-contract trial that wasn't even long enough to build up enough useful data to see if it was even worth the $300/mo they charge. Not only that, we are such a small company with so low of mentions it has been COMPLETELY useless. They don't care. They just want your money. And because we emailed them a few days after the 30-day trial (including weekends) they "talked to their lawyers" and "the lawyers" just couldn't let us out of the contract. How desperate are they that they need our $300/mo if they have such large companies on board that they brag about on their website?
I also dislike how there is no useful way to engage with Instagram. If you have 1,000 bubbles of engagement you have to click them all individually and change the color to know what you have even checked or not checked. It is tedious, time-consuming, and a complete waste of time. I don't even know how large companies manage this because of how much work it is.
Monitors are hard to set up. You have to specify and narrow down SO much just to tailor it to what you need. You can't be too broad, but you can't be too specific. They will ask to set up calls all day to waste your time just telling you all the work you need to do to get it right. Not resolving any business issues, managing NUVI is actually MORE work than anything. ZERO benefits. We are too small of a company and it is completely useless. They didn't have any sympathy for our less than 100 mentions a day and have bound us to the contract anyway. Cell phone providers don't even lock you into contracts anymore. I think they are extremely desperate for money.
Why would you pay such a high price for Garmin maps? These are so very expensive. I already had the Garmin and wanted maps for Europe. I just paid $69.99 to add "Europe NT: UK and Ireland" maps to my Garmin Nuvi. Foolishly I didn't check the 'coverage' and apparently Europe NT doesn't mean you get the maps for Europe. You only get the maps for UK and Ireland and not the rest Europe too. Are you kidding me?
To be honest, I would want maps for the whole of the frickin' world for $70. You can get the WHOLE WORLD FOR FREE ON GOOGLE MAPS on my iPhone people at Garmin!! Your maps are not that spectacularly good to warrant the price. I am so angry with myself for being so stupid to think Garmin want to give you value for money and keep you happy as a customer. They do not. It's a A RIP OFF!! Maybe I should just buy a suction holder for the car windscreen and use Google maps to navigate around Europe or the rest of the world for that matter.
I bought a Garmin Vivofit 2 (wings for life). I set it up, downloaded the connect program on my phone. I wanted it because of the sleep mode. It tells you how long you slept and how hard, soft, movement etc... I was interested in seeing how I slept so I was so excited when I got my Garmin in the mail. Well let me tell you don't buy this thing. In my opinion it's a complete ripoff. I wore it the first night, woke up the next morning to see what it read how I slept and it was completely blank, so I took it off and lay it on my dresser.
I worked the weekend and called Garmin on the following Monday. Before I called I looked on the Garmin sleep mode and it gave me readings of how many hours I slept from Thurs to Mon. (I only got this thing on Friday so how did it know how I slept on Thurs?) So when I called Garmin Monday after 9 am, I began to explain to the rep that I would like to return my Garmin and she was very rude and quick to the point of, "I'll email you the address to return it." She also told me, "You have to wear the Garmin 24 hours a day for it to work properly." I work a 12-hour shift job and we can not wear watches/rings. I think this company should get checked out by the Better Business Bureau.
I have a Garmin Vivofit with hrm. I use it for my martial art exercises. One day the program (Garmin Connect) decides to split my exercises into pieces and not as one. I email the company and the only response I took was: "We'd love to hear about your recent experience with our Customer Care Team. Please spare us a minute to tell us your thoughts on the contact you had. Click here to get started The information you give us will help us #BeatYesterday! Thanks for your time. The Customer Care Team." Does this sounds to you as a response to my query? Don't think so... In other words they never respond and they had the attitude to answer automatically - worst company ever.
Having bought several years ago in the UK for about £1,000 the Garmin StreetPilot 7200 - big screen for poor eyesight - I then bought the "lifetime" map updates. To me, lifetime means just that - for my lifetime. In other words, when I die, the update service goes, too. WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! One day recently, the screen froze, the cursor wouldn't move, and the directional arrow stayed static. Trying vainly to solve this problem and also to update the unit from the Garmin Express service (updates not possible) when I contacted Garmin they referred first to the wrong model designation, then told me to plug it into a socket to recharge the battery.
The 7200 does not have a battery to recharge. They provided complicated technical information which was not helpful nor understandable. When pressed for service on the lifetime update service I had purchased, back came a long fine print explanation that what had been advertised and promoted as, indeed, lifetime, was in fact not lifetime at all. It was for the lifetime of the product. Well, the product is not dead, and neither am I. I managed to unfreeze the screen myself purely by chance. They never replied to my question about the incorrect charging instruction, nor provide assistance on returning it for examination and/or repair.
On the basis of my experience, I allege Garmin is guilty of false or misleading advertising, false claims about other matters in this regard, and I would DEFINITELY NOT BUY another Garmin. I suggest other potential customers ditch this company and take heed of someone who thought that £1000 was for something that would justify the price and provide that which was promised. I am now writing to Which? magazine and all UK national media and others to present the "lifetime" falsity.
We are Canadians who had to replace our original Garmin GPS after an accident that broke the screen. We purchased a Garmin Nuvi 52 with advertised North American maps while we were in Arizona on a trip. Upon return to Canada, we discovered that there were no Canadian maps on the device. Apparently there is a belief out there that Canada is not part of North America. The company tells me that somewhere else on the box there was a clarification that the maps were only of the lower states. The large print description was wrong. Thus they will not provide Canadian maps unless I pay 60.00 American which is almost 100.00 American. Poor company to deal with.
I've had GPS for two years and it worked fine, for the most part. It came with lifetime map updates, which I utilized. After the last update, machine would not restart. It gets stuck on "loading maps" screen. It also won't communicate with a computer. The map update may have some software flaw, which now made this machine useless. Garmin is unwilling to help other than to exchange it for a refurbished one for a large fee (at least half of what I originally paid for it). They claim that warranty was only for one year and that map updates are "free" and therefore not guaranteed. I will never buy another Garmin product.
I had a Garmin for 6 years with no problems until it wouldn't switch on, so I thought I'll have another Garmin as they are good. I use it for my business to get to customers' houses, so bought a Nuvi 2519 LM, went to my first customer and it turned off 3 minutes before arrival. Started it again, had to input address again and it went off again, this happened several times. I thought it was just acting up being new and it took me all the way home with no issues. I visited 6 more customers during the week with the same issues as before so I exchanged it for an identical unit. Just been to my first customer with the new Sat Nav and it's doing exactly the same thing. I'm ready to throw it out of the window.
I bought the Garmin Nuvi 1300 with Lifetime map updates a few years ago. I created my online account and updated my maps. Even though the device lost reception a lot I used it as a backup for my phone gps. Recently I tried to update my map with my online account, but was asked for a product code. I thought my online account automatically saved my product code, but it did not. I contacted Garmin and the only help I received was I needed my product code. I misplaced this code which was on a small card. I thought Garmin would honor their lifetime map updates by providing me with my product code. THEY DID NOT. They suggested I pay for my updates. I do not recommended purchasing any Garmin products based on their mediocre product and their poor customer service.
I just purchased a Garmin Nuvi 2599 LMTH and there are no instructions in the box. I have spent most of today trying to get the 24 page manual, with NO success. I get sites with spyware, charges, misleading downloads. A company that does not support its product can only be a failure, no matter how much they make with the ads on the device. I would not recommend anyone to buy this pig in a poke.
Today is Christmas 2015. I opened up a present and it is the nuvi 2757. I plugged it into my computer. Nothing. Plugged it into wall outlet. Nothing. Have had it plugged in for 2 hours. Nothing. What a Christmas! DO NOT buy a Garmin.
Older Street Pilot unit that when I turned it on said to go to Garmin website and download new maps. Unit was working fine before, But locked up and would not shut off. Called Garmin and said they no longer supported my unit. Then why did you tell me to download new maps. Offered me a Nuvi 56LM for $79.95. Thanks. I now have a paper weight.
Garmin's design (for the nvi 260 and presumably for later models) is good in a way but only for Garmin not for the customer! I've had my unit since 2007 and it used to perform well except for taking an annoyingly large number of minutes to find satellites if it had not been used in a few weeks. Lately however, its battery even after being charged for many hours and/or even when connected to a charger does not hold a charge long enough even for the device to finish booting up, much less be of service. I suspected that the battery had simply reached the end of its service life and prepared to get a new one. However, I noticed that the case cannot be opened with any ordinary tools, so I supposed that I would have to send it back to Garmin for a battery. No such luck. Garmin does not make the devices with battery replacement in mind.
Apparently, you have to buy a whole new device even if the battery is the only problem. (That's why it's good for Garmin but not for you.) I also asked about the "lifetime update" that I had bought noting that since I had used it only once and now could not, was there to be a refund? No. I had used the service within the (alleged) working lifetime of the device you see, so I was stuck. Now all I have is a $100+ paperweight... or maybe a skeet target. DO NOT buy anything from Garmin or their competitors if you can't (or if no one else can) change the battery! Speaking of competition, Garmin would do well to reconsider their obstructive policy. The GPS facilities in smartphones may well drive them out of business before too long and they could get at least a few more dollars before the end by allowing themselves to sell a few more batteries...
Purchased 1st NUVI 2597, recommended by a friend. Got it, registered it, then tried to connect to my computer for free downloads. Would not recognize the USB cable, therefore would not connect to the computer. The Garmin app could not find the device connected. Emailed customer support through their website, which asked for description of the issue, from dropdown menu. Then described in detail what the problem I was experiencing.
Received email back, with link to website, which if they had read the details in the email, would have known been there, done that. So responded with, "Read the entire issue," and I re-explained the issue. Response was they will need to replace the device. But I had to send the defective device back first. Did that, and received new device. Guess what? Same issue. Now it has been 3 weeks trying to get a device I can actually sync with my computer for map updates. Just so you know, the maps the device is loaded with are at least 5 years out of date. I know as it does not recognize the street my son lives on and that street was built and homes/apartments built on over 5 years ago.
I have owned my Garmin 50 Nuvi for a couple of years and I have hardly used it and is it useless with directions. Yesterday it took me approx. 28 miles out of my way when I was only 10 minutes from my destination and the previous time it literally sent me around in a big circle and it still didn't get me to my destination. In the end I had to rely on the paper route I had printed off as a backup and many frantic phone calls. They say if I update it, it may work better but what is the point of paying for something that may not work? They should offer lifetime free as standard and not an extra. I would never recommend this to anyone.
Purchased a Garmin. Used it less than 6 times. Takes a minimum of 30 minutes to find a satellite. Even though product is defective Garmin will only exchange with a "refurbished".
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