I sent this to Garmin in reply to the woefully inadequate tech support I received:
Nice try. $250 for you to press the top secret reset code? Thank goodness for the internet, where I was able to find someone willing to take 10 seconds to point out the existence of these apparently secret codes, which surprisingly do not appear anywhere on Garmin.com. A simple reset code fixed the problem and saved me from a $250 waste of money. I am forced to believe that this was a deliberate attempt on the part of Garmin to collect repair money for problems they have seen before and know that there is a trivial fix for. What a disgusting way to run a business.
Unfortunately, this experience has completely turned me off from ever buying a Garmin unit again. I will not spend thousands of dollars on equipment that doesn't come with even the remotest attempt at customer support.
I also intend to share this deplorable support experience with anyone that will listen or read the postings I will be putting on internet groups. Other GPS options are emerging on the market - you will quickly lose your market share when people find out that they will get zero support from Garmin unless they are willing to pay $250 for even minimal service.
A very dissatisfied customer,
This morning I had this waiting for me in my inbox:
I'm sorry I did not know if full detail what was wrong with your unit yes there is a master rest for that unit which is to hold the quit and the route button and then turn the unit on and then release the buttons. That will reset the unit.
Refraining from criticisms regarding punctuation, I replied thusly:
For future reference, most, if not all, people would prefer to at least try the reset before spending $250 and a couple of weeks sending the unit in. Perhaps Garmin should consider putting the reset codes and the typical symptoms that point to using the reset code on the web site. Otherwise, I guarantee you that people like me that find out through other means about these codes are going to assume that Garmin simply cares more about collecting $250 than it does about helping its customers.
I doubt if anything will come of this, of course, but at least one "Aviation Support Specialist" may put forth a wee bit more effort in the future.