Your Garmin Forerunner is more than a smartwatch: it measures your steps and keeps track of your heart rate. But if it doesn’t have the correct time and date set, you could have difficulty syncing data and keeping track of your progress.
Here, I’ll provide some easy steps for changing the time and date on your Garmin Forerunner. If you have any questions or concerns about its overall functionality, be sure to consult your user manual.
How to Update the Time and Date on Garmin Forerunner
First, power on the device and step outside. You want to have your watch gather information from nearby satellites. Then:
- Access the main menu.
- Go to “Settings.”
- Navigate to “Time.”
- Select “Time Format.”
- Enter your desired Time Zone from the drop-down menu.
- Choose “Auto” if you want your watch to adjust during Daylight Savings times.
- Exit to the main menu.
If you change your mind about the time format, not a problem; you can make changes at any time. These steps could also vary slightly, depending on what Forerunner model you purchased.
Will Garmin Forerunner Automatically Update Time and Date?
Once you’ve set up your Garmin Forerunner, it will automatically track Daylight Savings updates and other related changes.
But what happens if you get on a plane and enter a different time zone? Not a problem; your device will automatically make the change once it starts receiving data.
How to Change the Date on Your Watch
Here’s the thing: your Garmin Forerunner operates using GPS. So, it can access your location and, from there, determine the date. You cannot change the date on your watch manually. Instead, you must do the following:
- Power on your watch.
- Go outside.
- Stand in a clear, open space free of trees or other obstructions.
Once the watch gathers your information, it should automatically sync to the correct date.
Troubleshooting the Time/Date Setup on Garmin Forerunner
Even though these steps are pretty straightforward, you could still run into problems while setting up your device. Consider how the following measures could get you back on track:
Stand in an Open Area Free of Obstructions
Your watch might have a hard time connecting to neighboring satellite signals. This could be the issue if you’re standing on your front porch rather than directly outside—or if you live in an urban area full of tall buildings.
Relocate yourself to an empty area free of obstructions, like a park or open field. Now, power your device on and off. If successful, it should correct itself to the appropriate date.
Reset the Device
I honestly have no idea why resetting certain devices works, but most of the time, when one of my smart devices isn’t working, resetting it does the trick. Here’s how you can reset your Garmin Forerunner:
- Navigate to the main menu.
- Choose “Settings.”
- Select “System.”
- Choose “Restore Defaults.”
- Hit “Yes.”
This will make it as though you’re unboxing your watch for the first time. You might need to re-enter your desired time zone, but other than that, it should connect to the appropriate date within seconds.
Double Check Your Time Zone
I’ve lived in Texas my entire life, and I literally just Googled: “What time zone do I live in?” You might not know your time zone off the top of your head–especially if you’re in a new area. Click here to access a time zone chart based on your location. Then, re-enter your location using the steps I listed above.
Try Giving Your Watch a Break
Unless you turn off your watch every night before you go to sleep, it’s probably on 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Some models can even stay powered on for several weeks on a single charge.
If your watch is slow to respond or isn’t processing your changes, try turning it off and leaving it for a few hours. You can turn it off by holding down on the power button for 15 seconds and then selecting “Off.”
Contact Customer Support
If you’re still having problems, you can always reach out to Garmin’s customer support network. Here are your options:
- You can report a map error by clicking here.
- You can call Garmin’s support hotline Monday through Friday between 7 am to 7 pm. The toll-free number is 800-800-1020.
Here, you can connect with a representative who can listen to your story and provide personalized information.
When in Doubt, File a Warranty Claim
Sometimes, the problem isn’t you; it’s the device. Garmin covers all of its products with a limited warranty. For repairs, you generally have 90 days from the date of purchase to submit a warranty claim. For all other inquiries, like factory-specific defects, you could have up to a year to file.
Depending on your eligibility, Garmin could repair or replace your watch at little to no cost.
By following the steps I listed above, you can get your Garmin Forerunner on the right track. Remember: if you’ve exhausted all of your options, you can contact Garmin for specialized advice about your product.