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Garmin Watch Not Syncing? Try These 7 SIMPLE Fixes


I’m sure you want nothing more than a Garmin watch that tracks your activities, connects to the app, and syncs your data seamlessly. So if you notice that your watch is stuck on connecting and then it fails to link to Garmin Connect, you have a syncing issue to fix.

But why is your Garmin watch not connecting and syncing in the first place?

Your Garmin watch won’t connect and sync data because of a system glitch, an outdated companion app, an obsolete operating system, or connection failure. You may have activated power saving mode, the Bluetooth connection may be faulty, or your Wi-Fi connection may be weak. 

I address each problem in this guide and point you to what to do to get your Garmin watch to not only connect to your iOS or Android smartphone but also send metrics to the companion app. 

Continue reading to learn more.

Why is My Garmin Watch Not Syncing to Phone?

The following table is a summary on why your Garmin watch is not sending the captured data to the companion app:

 Probable CausePossible Solution
1.Your Garmin watch has a system glitch.Restart your Garmin watch to clear possibly stored cache and system glitches.
2.Garmin Connect app is not up to date.You should update the companion app to the latest version.
3.The watch’s operating system is obsolete.Check if there are any firmware updates for your Garmin watch and install.
4.Connection error between the watch and the companion app.Disconnect the watch from the Garmin Connect app and then reconnect.
5.There is an issue with Bluetooth connection.Check to ensure that Bluetooth is active on your smartphone and the watch.
6.Power saving mode is active on Garmin.Deactivate the power saving mode to allow Garmin watch to sync data.
7.Your Wi-Fi connection is unstable or not available at all.Ensure your Wi-Fi connection is stable if Bluetooth connection is off.

Let’s look at each of these issues even further, so you can learn exactly how to fix all of them and get your Garmin watch connecting and working with the companion app again.

7 Ways to Fix a Garmin Watch That Won’t Sync to Phone

Here are seven simple fixes to try if your Garmin watch won’t link and upload your stats to the Garmin Connect app:

1. Restart the Watch to Fix System Glitches

System glitches are quite common on wearable devices. And the Garmin watch isn’t an exception.

So if your watch isn’t connecting to your iOS or Android phone, start your troubleshooting process by doing a reboot.

  • Press and hold down the power button until the watch turns off.
  • Wait 30 to 60 seconds.
  • Again, press and hold down the power button to turn the watch on.

Restarting the Garmin watch should clear the possibly stored cache, close apps running in the background, fix system glitches, and refresh the system’s memory for normal operation.

2. Update the Garmin Connect App

The second step is to check whether the companion app is up to date.

As I’ve mentioned before, Garmin developers release updates to enhance the quality and usability of the app. The tweaks made fix bugs, enhance security, introduce new features, and improve user experience.

If you’re not using the watch with the latest version of the app, you may notice performance lags, wrong reporting, or no data uploading to the app at all.

So go to Google Play Store or Apple Store, depending on the type of smartphone you use, and update Garmin Connect to the latest version.

3. Disconnect and Reconnect Garmin Watch to the App

Have you ever wondered why a Garmin watch may stay connected but fail to synchronize to the Connect app?

It’s usually because of a connection disruption that arise during the syncing process.

To fix this:

  • Disconnect the watch from the companion app.
  • Wait for 30 to 60 seconds.
  • Pair the watch to the app again.

And that’s it.

4. Update the Garmin Watch Operating System

If you’ve restarted your watch, updated the Garmin Connect app, and linked the watch to Android or iOS but you still can’t sync, check if there are firmware updates and install them.

As with the app, Garmin release firmware updates to improve performance and user experience.

In practice, running the watch on the old version of the operating system may cause the failure to connect to phone and sync stats.

So check if there are new firmware updates for the watch, download, install, and restart the watch to resume normal operation.

You can update the Operating System directly from the watch, in the companion app, or via Garmin Express. 

To update the OS from you watch:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Select System.
  • Choose Software Update.
  • Select Software Update
  • Check Update Available.
  • Install Now. 

To update the Operating System via the Garmin Express:

  • Link your watch and computer via a USB cable.
  • Launch the Garmin Express app.
  • Open the Garmin Express app on your computer.
  • Select your Garmin Watch from the list of connected Garmin Watches. 

The app will show all the available updates for the watch.

  • Continue by clicking on “Install” or “Install All” and let your watch update.
  • Disconnect your Garmin watch from the computer.

Right after doing so, the watch will ask you to “Install Now” or “Install Tonight”. Select the option that suits you the best.

5. Check Your Bluetooth Connection

Garmin watches require Bluetooth to connect and sync to the mobile app. So if the watch is stuck on connecting for an extended period, check your Bluetooth connection. 

  • Bring the watch and the phone in range to device discovery easy.
  • Check if Bluetooth is active on your mobile phone and the watch.

Sometimes Bluetooth is active on both devices, but they still can’t connect. You can fix this by restarting the watch and the phone and then activating Bluetooth on both devices. 

6. Troubleshoot Your Wi-Fi Connection

If you have a Garmin watch that connects to a Wi-Fi network, you can use the technology to upload your activities to the Garmin connect app.

To be clear, you won’t need Bluetooth connection to be active in this case.

However, if you’ve connected the watch to a Wi-Fi network but it fails to sync, you should check your network to ensure the connection is reliable.

You should try something restarting your Wi-Fi and reconnecting the watch to the same network.

7. Turn Off Power Saving Mode on Your Garmin Watch

I know how valuable the power saving mode on Garmin watch is.

The problem is that it’s restrictive. And in our case, it keeps the sync function on Garmin from working appropriately.

While your data will synchronize to the Garmin Connect companion app, it won’t do so in real time. So there will be a delay in getting your stats.

Because you want to sync your health, fitness, and activity data such as steps in real-time, you should disable the power saving mode on the watch.

To do this:

  • Press the menu option and go to Settings.
  • Choose Power Manager.
  • Go to Battery Saver.
  • Toggle Battery Saver mode to “Off”.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How Do I Properly Sync Garmin Watch to the Garmin Connect App?

Some Garmin watches will periodically auto-sync your health and fitness data as long as you allow the Connect app to run in the background.

Some will require you to sync your data manually, but doing so should only take a few minutes of your time.

To sync your activities manually:

  • Make sure that the watch and the phone are in range.
  • Open the Garmin Connect App on your phone.
  • Tap the Menu or More icon.
  • Select Garmin Device.
  • Choose your Garmin from the list of available watches.
  • Tap the Sync icon on the upper right.

2. How Long Does a Garmin Watch Take to Sync? 

How long Garmin watches take to send data depends on how much data set you want to transfer.

On average, though, it takes the Garmin watch at least 10 minutes to sync your health, fitness, and activity data. 

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Michael Jonathan

Michael Jonathan is the brainchild of Apelo Studio. He loves talking about wearable devices, and he is passionate about helping you push your wearable device to its limits. His creativity and ability to tear electric components apart and put them back together makes him an incredible troubleshooter and blogger.

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