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Replacement Garmin Edge 810 arrived: first ride report.

Saturday, March 1, 2014 by  
Filed under Daily Blog


As I reported earlier this week, I decided to replace my Garmin Edge 500 Premium Red Edition with the feature-rich Garmin Edge 810 cycling computer (see “I am sick of being lost on the bike, bought a Garmin Edge 810“).

Unfortunately on my first real ride using the Edge 810 things did not go well at all. You can read my full account of the problems in Thursday’s blog if you like, however, I’ll go ahead summarize the issues I experienced here:

  • The Bluetooth connection to my phone (Samsung Galaxy S4) was lost, rendering LiveTrack functionality useless.
  • Shortly after losing Bluetooth, the Edge 810 crashed and shut down without warning.
  • Numerous attempts to re-establish a Bluetooth connection with my smartphone failed.
  • When I completed the 90 kilometer (55 mile)/3.5 hour ride, the battery level on the Edge 810 had dropped from 100% to 38%.

Also–and I never mentioned this in my blog–but when I was configuring the Edge 810 for the first time it shut down on me out of the blue. At the time I figured I’d accidentally hit the power button or something, but in retrospect it was obviously a malfunction.

This is my replacement Garmin Edge 810 mounted on my Madone. It performed flawlessly on yesterday's 33 kilometer test ride.

This is my replacement Garmin Edge 810 mounted on my Madone. It performed flawlessly on yesterday’s 33 kilometer test ride.

So Amazon sent me a replacement Edge 810 via overnight air, and yesterday I took it out on a 33 kilometer (20.4 mile) ride. It may have been a short ride, but I used all of the Edge 810’s functions and features: OSM maps were activated, LiveTrack was running, I rode a custom course created with RideWithGPS and I utilized the Edge 810’s turn-by-turn navigation features. Also, I swiped through the various data screens dozens of times as I rode…

No problems at all. The unit functioned flawlessly in every respect.

When I got home and checked the battery level on the Edge 810 it was at a very healthy 95%. That was a one hour ride, so if I extrapolate (and let’s call it 94% just to be safe), I should get Garmin’s claimed 15-17 hour battery life.

As for my phone’s battery, it fared equally as well: when I started the ride its battery charge was 84%, and when I completed the ride the battery level was 74%. The phone was communicating with the Garmin Edge 810 via Bluetooth the entire time (necessary for LiveTrack), and was also using its data connection the entire time (also necessary for LiveTrack).

So, did I just get lucky yesterday, or was the original unit indeed defective? I should know the answer to that question very soon: I’m doing a 170 kilometer (105 mile) ride this morning. This ride is the second in a series of five XFL (Cross-Florida) group training rides I’m doing leading up to the epic 274 kilometer (170 mile) Cross-Florida ride, which I’ll be doing in early April.

Anyway, I’m going to have LiveTrack and turn-by-turn course navigation running the whole way (feel free to follow along in real time–I’ll be posting the LiveTrack link on Facebook around 7:00 AM EST). If the Edge 810 makes it through this ride with no problems, I’m going to feel pretty confident in it. I sincerely hope that’s the case: apart from the issues I experienced with the original unit, the Edge 810 is proving to be a very impressive bike computer!

I’ll follow up on Monday.

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