First Impressions and Please help restore Nuvi 350 operation
This post has two subjects.
One: my first impressions of uploading POIs.
Two: this newbie needs help to get Nuvi device working after uploading.
I'm learning much. I feel like I'm struggling when setting up to download a POI list. I don't really know the content without spending quite a while looking at the maps of each POI. I guess it just takes time to choose the appropriate POI and then upload and check it out on the GPS device. But anyway, I successfully downloaded and installed a couple custom POIs. I found one very useful, and the other of no use (it showed wireless hot spots, but the closest one to my area was about 200 miles away). Next time I load a POI, I'll leave the useless one out of my "custom POI" folder.
After loading the POIs and safety camera data, the GPS device has acted erratically, making it unusable. Cannot find any satellites sometimes. From "power on" to the first menu I sometimes see full sat bars, but they disappear right away to show none. Also, the clock is acting strange. It loses minutes, then catches up sometimes, only to lose even more the next time I look at it. This has happened for about two days after the upload. Then I updated the NUVI 350 from Version 6.0 to current V. 6.20 and it appeared to solve the problem. But only for about 15 minutes. The same problems occurs now. Battery is fully charged. It will still find all 12 satellites with 13 foot accuracy, then the satellite screen goes empty, No sats. I can reset the device, but that does not help. Antenna has free sky view. I even tried touching a wire to the external antenna port. Nothing.
Do I need to reload the software? If so, where can I get it? I don't have a copy of it.
Thanks for any help you can give me.
2 things worth trying.
A, Update your software using the Garmin web updater.
It's easy and it's free.
If no joy try
B, Reset your Nuvi:-
1) Switch off your device
2) Keep pressing the bottom right of the screen and switch on the device
3) The GPS will pop up a message saying 'Erase all user data'
4) choose Yes
5) make sure you leave your Garmin for 45min in open area where clear satellite reception is there. The Garmin will learn the satellite signals.
Thank you for the suggestions. The first thing I did was update with Garmin's software. But the Nuvi 350 was still finding, then dropping satellites. I did a master reset too. It was frustrating to see great reception, then the screen would go blank.
I asked Garmin support for help and here is their reply:
"The Garmin Web site has the latest version of WebUpdater and instructions on how to use it. Go to:
Once you install it, you can run the WebUpdater program. WebUpdater automatically updates your unit to the latest version of software.
If you're continue having an issue, please go ahead and do master reset on your GPS.
Note: A master reset will erase all waypoints or favorites and will restore your unit to the default factory settings.
To perform a Master Reset on the nuvi 300, follow these steps:
1. Start with the device OFF and unplugged from the power source.
2. Use your index finger to press and hold the top right corner of the touchscreen.
3. Power the device ON while continuing to press and hold your finger to the top right corner of the touchscreen.
4. After the device powers ON, release the power button. Then you will see the message: Do you really want to erase all user data?
5. When this message displays, remove your finger from the top right of the touchscreen and touch Yes.
6. The device will now go through the Reset.
7. Follow the onscreen instructions to set up your nüvi.
After the nüvi is set up, if indoors, please go outside to allow the device to acquire the satellite information. Ensure that the device has a clear line-of-sight with the sky.
If you need an additional assistance, please reply back to this e-mail or you may call our product support."
Garmin's suggestions didn't solve my problem, but they were quick to respond and I will probably talk to them again someday.
I did more web research on the antenna problem and found it common. Most people that solve the problem themselves dismantled their unit and either soldered in a jumper wire or replaced a switch.
I did the ol' -bang the unit on the steering wheel a few times- and it worked (not recommended). The satellites appeared and I could use the Nuvi 350 for a while, but when I touched it and moved it, it lost reception again. That told me there was a bad connection somewhere. I got out my magnifying glass and a tiny flat head screwdriver (no mini-torx in my toolbox) and removed and dismantled the antenna.
After removing the antenna, I found the antenna ribbon connector very loose. I checked the reception with it dismantled, but still connected, and found it was good if I tightened the antenna ribbon. Not being a micro circuit surgeon, I decided not to try soldering as many have done to repair their GPS. I just wound the ribbon cable an extra turn before reinstalling the antenna. That worked OK. Now I still get dropped satellites, but not very often.
I used the device last weekend during a stay out of town in an unfamiliar area. It took about 10 minutes to find the 'birds' (satellites) from the hotel window (an open window, I got nothing through the glass). I searched for local POIs and was happy walking to them using the Nuvi 350. It only dropped the satellite signals twice in three days.
In closing, if your device is under warranty, by all means let Garmin help you. If you have an old unit like mine, and it's useless due to antenna problems, you could try my easy fix, or go the route of soldering a jumper from the external to internal antenna as explained in the links above. I wish you happy repairing.
That said, I ordered a refurbished Garmin Nuvi 265T (traffic for life of the product) and will be enjoying learning more about this fascinating technology and social experience when it arrives in a day or so. MrDub