Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Attempted rape by Garmin

I'm a little pissed off right now, although the story has a happy ending.

On Sunday, I flew out to MadCo to buy a case of oil in preparation for the still on-going oil change. Taxiing out for takeoff, I noticed that the Garmin GPS 295 wasn't on. Sure that I had turned it on, I was a little confused, but just went ahead and turned it on again. I clicked to the moving map page, and -click- off it went again. Once I got it home (which I can fortunately find almost blindfolded) I took it out of the plane and tried new batteries, even though the GPS is hooked up to aircraft power. Same problem.

Yesterday I sent an email to Garmin tech support giving explicit details of the symptoms I was seeing. Here's what I got back:

Thank you for contacting GARMIN International.

From what you describe, it would appear that your unit is not operating correctly
(to which I said "DUH!"), and should be returned to the factory for service.

The flat rate of repair for your unit is $250.00, however this would be covered under warranty if it is less than one year from the date of purchase.

Well, that wasn't very helpful. Rather than blindly sending them $250 and the unit for repair, I asked on the Socata owners web site if anyone knew of another repair shop I could try. One of the replies I received was this:


With the unit off, press and hold the OUT+QUIT+NRST buttons. Tap the POWER button once for about .5 - 1 second. (The unit will beep on the release of the power button, but the screen will stay blank.) Continue holding the OUT+QUIT+NRST buttons for about 10 seconds and then release. The unit will beep again and then power on. It should now function properly.

If you have any other questions, please let me know.

Best Regards

Quentin Deck
Product Support Specialist
Garmin International

Hmm, I wonder why I didn't get a response like that! So, I tried the codes, but it didn't work. So I googled something like "Garmin GPS 295 master reset" and found a page that listed quite a number of reset codes, including the Garmin 295. The reset code for the 295 is QUIT+ROUTE+ON. The entire list is here.

Interestingly, the list was not on the Garmin.com web site, nor have I been able to find it there since. Garmin would apparently rather get $250 for 10 seconds of work than provide the codes necessary to reset their product.

Garmin makes a fantastic product. They caught Bendix/King asleep at the wheel a few years ago by developing a product that was far superior to what was available at the time. Pilots were fed up with the arrogant attitude of Bendix/King when it came to sales and support, so willingly flocked to Garmin.

It appears now that Garmin is the new 800 lb gorilla, and is behaving in much the same manner as Bendix/King before them.


  1. Ironically, their new ad in south africa revolves around a lost man being raped by hillbillies.

  2. Hi!!!

    I have a GPSMAP295 and I am trying to make a Master Reset with OUT+QUIT+NRST buttons and with QUIT+ROUTE+ON (in this case the first screen for a few seconds appears black), but I can't complet the reset...

    In Garmin service send me an e-mail with the second opcion... I don't know what can I do... any idea?


  3. No, I'm afraid I have no idea. You problem might be different than mine was. I hate that they charge $250 too even look at it. A 295 isn't even worth that much any more.

  4. Hi DaveG, I just receibed an e-mail from Garmin, and the Master Reset on my GPSMAP295 is ROUTE+ON

    Regards from Andorra