Garmin Quest GPS System – Support Forum

Poor Satellite Acquisition (Weather?) [Garmin Quest GPS System - 114281]

  • Rob501
  • Posts: 3
  • Join Date: 6 七月 2005
I've been running my Quest for almost 12 months in an MG (to stop tints threads) and on a Motorcycle. Satellite Acquisition has been almost immediate (once away from buildings), even during winter. Recently (early July 2005, Manchester, NW England) it has taken up to 5 minutes of driving to acquire 3 satellites and it frequently loses a satellite here and there. It will always pick up one or two points but struggles to pick up 3. We have had a very overcast early July, very dense storm clouds. Does this type of atmospheric condition affect Satellite acquistion?
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
Hey, I live in Chester and have been having exactly - exactly - the same problems with my Quest during the past few weeks. I have been emailling Garmin about it and am on the verge of sending the unit back to be checked. The behaviour of my system is exactly the same as yours - lost reception that seems to be more erratic than logical. I have turned off, soft reset, hard reset, wiped data - nothing has sorted it. I did wonder if there is a dodgy satellite serving our area or something (sorry, I have little idea of how the satellites work or whether one flies over Chester all the time or whatever), or if it was the heat (although the unit should be OK up to 50C. Car or motorcycle, reception can be lost for anything from a few seconds to 15 minutes. It's frustrating, but reassuring to know it isn't just me. I love my quest - when it works, it's my best gadget ever. Having read your post, I may well delay sending the unit back and test it for another couple of weeks. Perhaps it's just us northerners in the UK!
  • Rob501
  • Posts: 3
  • Join Date: 6 七月 2005
Hi Pluto! After several emails to Garmin, including re-sets and reloads of software, and the suggestion that I should leave it in an 'open space' for an hour to get a good lock! I decided to back grade to 3.40 software. This improved instant acquisition of Satellites but unfortunately, the following morning after acquiring in around three seconds, as soon as I started moving, acquisition was lost. Static reception was instant but mobile tracking non-existent. So, a quick phone call to Garmin has meant the Quest has gone back. I'll keep you posted. You mention 'motorcycle'. Do you have the Garmin factory mount or a pattern unit? The only reason I ask is that I had one fitted to my Tiger recently and wonder if there is a common denominator here.
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
Hi Rob501, Yes, please keep me posted. My unit has undergone the same actions as you have done and still seems erratic. Sometimes it works pefectly, other times it just won't aquire satellites. I use it in the car with the official cradle and on the bikes in a RAM MOUNT cradle. I don't see any reason for this affecting the GPS as it worked brilliantly for 2 months before I had any problems. It has indeed been since 3.50 software version was loaded that I've had the trouble, but this also coincides with the hot summer weather we've been having. I have wondered whether heat or atmospheric pressure are involved somewhere. Sometimes, even in the same location, satellites one minute are aquired easily, then later on not at all. I've got my returns number and am ready to send mine back, but I shall now wait until you update me. The unit does function sometimes, as I said, and I have some time before the guarantee runs out. George
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
An update. After much testing and investigation, it seems my unit might suffer from vibration that causes the built-in antenna to dislodge. A little bit of twiddling and tapping seems to bring the satellites back online. For the first time in ages, I have not had a break in signal for a 40 mile journey - mind you, I was a passenger in a car and held the unit myself for the duration. That's the latest theory I have. Time will tell, but it might point to a damaged antenna or link to the antenna.
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
An update. After much testing and investigation, it seems my unit might suffer from vibration that causes the built-in antenna to dislodge. A little bit of twiddling and tapping seems to bring the satellites back online. For the first time in ages, I have not had a break in signal for a 40 mile journey - mind you, I was a passenger in a car and held the unit myself for the duration. That's the latest theory I have. Time will tell, but it might point to a damaged antenna or link to the antenna.
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
Another update. Using the unit with an external aerial means the dropped satellites happen no more. This means my unit must be faulty with the internal aerial somehow. I wonder if it has become damaged or is just loose. Either way, I shall have to send it back for a repair, but at least my mystery symptoms seem to have been identified. I'll still be interested in finding out what Garmin say about the othe poster's unit.
  • Rob501
  • Posts: 3
  • Join Date: 6 七月 2005
Pluto! Sorry for the delay in response. I just wanted to be sure my situation had been resolved. It sounds like we had the same problem. I too gave in and sent my unit back to Garmin. Within 7 days, a brand new Quest was delivered by courier to the door. However, the cause of the problem can only be speculation as I recieved no details on the fault from Garmin. So in conclusion: Excellent service from Garmin UK but a little feedback would be useful. HTH.
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
I received a brand new unit back from Garmin on the Friday, having posted the faulty unit back on Monday. That's what I call service and it is wonderful to have a fully-working unit back. By replacing, I can only summise that it is easier for them to do such, and perhaps recondition faulty units. Whatever, the foyr day turn around is very good customer service and a fine example for other manufacturers to follow. It has been good to know of someone else having gone through the same experience. Let's hope the new units hold up to use better. Safe motoring Rob501! Plutopants
  • plutopants
  • Posts: 23
  • Join Date: 14 十一月 2004
An update (yet another!). Having handled my new unit so carefully, it hasn't even been on a long trip, and has really been looked after over the last month - this one has started showing the same symptoms. Squeezing a little behind the antenna sometimes solves it, but nevertheless, satellite aquisition is sporadic again. I am fed up. Surely this must be a weakness in the unit design. It's had no more than simple use on the bike and in the car - no tours, just short trips. The external antenna I have works fine with it, but I have come to regard the internal antenna as a waste of space. Not sure whether I'll bother sending this one back to Garmin - they must be sick of me by now. I might just live with having to use the external aerial.
;