Garmin Edge 800 GPS

Garmin Edge 800

Garmin Edge 800

I have a Garmin Edge 800 bike computer. I had previously owned a Garmin Forerunner 405 which I used principally for running, so the device was not completely alien to me when I got it in October 2012.

The device sits on its mount on my handlebars and has a touch screen display. The touch screen is not quite as good as my iPhone and needs a bit of pressure. It does work with gloves on though.

Ride data is presented in customisable screens.

I bought my Garmin with the performance bundle, so it has a cadence counter and a heart rate monitor. Another option is a navigation bundle.

The device comes with pre-installed ‘Base Maps’ which are pretty useless. I use Open Street Maps which are available free from Talky Toaster. Excellent instructions to get them onto your device are available from Scarlet Fire.

The Garmin Edge on the Dawes Galaxy Tourer

The Garmin Edge on the Dawes Galaxy Tourer

Initially I used the Garmin to record a ride so I knew how fast, how far and how hilly the ride had been. There is also temperature, data and calories used and power output.

I quickly started drawing courses and following them. I use Ride with GPS  to plan routes and also to analyse the results. I like it better than the Garmin Connect site.

In January when I got going with Audax rides, I found the GPS a great alternative to following a route card, having to stop and look at the map regularly.

The Garmin did really well until I started doing longer rides. After about 9 hours and 170km the battery ran out. Not good. I explored external battery packs and think that a little external power supply with 4xAA batteries in it which I can plug in on a cafe break should keep the device charged. However I haven’t used it because on the next couple of 200km rides the data was corrupted. One ride had a track and no elevation data and the next had nothing. This is a PITA when doing an Audax DIY verified by GPS as there is no data so therefore no points! The next day the damn thing wouldn’t even turn on. I had a look on YACF and followed advice on a reset – which erases all history, so back up needed. This got it working again and it recorded a couple of 100km rides OK. However, I sent an email to Garmin explaining the problems and they suggested another reset and that I should update the software from the links on their site. I followed their instructions and got the message – ‘software not present’. At this point I picked up the phone, spoke to Garmin and asked for a replacement under warranty.

That was on Monday. I actually got a brand new Garmin Edge 800 with performance bundle by return of post so it arrived on Wednesday. I tried it out on a 12 hour 215km ride yesterday – all working perfectly.

I think Garmin Customer Support are excellent – however they are probably very experienced as the Garmin Edge 800 is in my experience – not perfect!

3 thoughts on “Garmin Edge 800 GPS

  1. Pingback: 100 km Audax DIY through West and North Dorset | Old Bat On A Bike.

  2. binsted

    Like you I have had problems, with both my 705 and 800, in fact a 100% failure rate both being replaced within the warranty period. I am now on 3rd cadence sensor on my replacement 800 and am annoyed that the warranty on the replacement unit is only valid until the expiry date of the original unit. Yes Garmins customer service is good, probably due to a lot of practice. I would expect these units to last at least 5 years, sadly they don’t seem to be able to make 12 months.
    I will not buy another Edge


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