Tip of the day: Changing your Garmin FR60 battery

A few weeks ago I was looking to add two Garmin FR60’s to my infamous roller for some rolling pin comparison shots, like I usually do.

Except, both watches batteries had gone kaput.  I had noticed this back some time ago, but for whatever reason I was afraid that I’d kill the watches in the battery upgrade process.  So I kept putting it off.  But with the product review I needed these to be looking all ready for the main event, so I went ahead and bit the bullet.

Turns out, it’s super easy.  So for the benefit of those with Garmin FR60’s out there, here’s how easy it is.

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First, you’ll need a spare CR2032 battery.  These are the main stay of any ANT+ device with a swappable battery.  So next time you’re on Amazon, order a pack of 96 of them and just be set for life.  Me on the other hand, I happened to stumble by the ANT+ booth at Interbike where they had a giant punch bowl of them free for the taking.  Probably the one and only freebie I picked up at the show…and the best freebie in my opinion.

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At any rate, now go find a tiny screwdriver.  Ideally Phillips Head (the one with the +), but a flat head will work too in a pinch.

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With that, you’ll go to town unscrewing the four little screws on the back.  Do this somewhere that you’ve got full visibility into any situation which might result in a flying screw.  Don’t want to lose any of these!

(Preemptive: Insert your own loose screw joke here)

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Once you’ve got the back undone you’ll see the little orange rubber band around the perimeter.  That’s the water sealing o-ring.  Don’t go shooting it at your significant other.  If that gets messed up, your watch will eventually get messed up as well.

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Next find go ahead and swap out the battery itself.  This is simply a case of removing one and putting the new one in.

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Now you’re ready to seal ‘er up.  The one item to note is that if you leave the waterproofing ring stuck on the back of the watch backing, it’s really hard to get it perfectly aligned.  Instead, carefully remove it and gently place it in the little outline on your watch.  Note that there’s a correct ‘up’ way, which is usually easy to see in the outline left by the sticky stuff.  When in doubt note the little notch goes up, and up is defined by both the back plate and front of watch having the word ‘Garmin’ being written right-side up.

Ok, got it all situated?  Good.  Now simply screw the back cover back on.

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Make sure the screws are tight – we don’t want any water leakage.  Or lose screws (secondary opportunity for loose screw jokes). With that – you’re golden!

You’ll need to set back up any sensor pairings as well as any settings you had, since those are lost.  But otherwise, it’s just like new again – ready to go another year.

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Oh, and don’t forget you’ll need to change the time/date as well.  Or, you can be like me and just be too lazy to do it… :)

Enjoy!

31 Comments

  1. Aces

    If you change the battery before it goes completely dead and you're quick enough swapping them over it will keep all your history and settings.

    Reply
  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  3. You're post timing is just a hair off. I just changed mine for the first time 2 hrs before this :)

    As usual, good info. I put off changing the battery for 2 weeks as I was scared of messing up the gasket.

    Reply
  4. Hah! I just ordered another pack of 5 off ebay for $2.79 shipped last night. Thought that was cheap, but a quick check on amazon shows you can get 50 of them for ~$10. They work in my garage remote, my Suunto watch, my headlamp, HR monitor. I wish every device used these. 2032's have been my mainstay battery for years. Heck- you can probably use them in vending machines as quarters.

    Reply
  5. Does Garmin recommend you change it on your own or to send it in? And have you tested your waterproofing? Maybe given that it is a running watch, you might never submerge it, but I have had bad things happen doing battery changes on my own on watches that get submerged.

    Reply
  6. Anonymous

    my FR 60 has been off lately alhtough I just calibrated it. does the foot pod need to be changed regularly as well?
    thanks

    Reply
  7. Anonymous

    thanks for taking the time to post this, it has been most helpful.

    Reply
  8. VS

    I recently changed the battery and synched it with my heart rate monitor and foot pod but for some reason its not working. Its not counting my calories, heart rate or my distance....did anyone else have the same problem?

    Reply
  9. Hello. Thanks for your informative piece. I just wanted to add some comments following some issues I have had with my own Fr60. It has been a much appreciated friend for the last 12 months but the battery recently died. I tried to change it and had real issues with the seal. After removing the back and putting a new battery in I discovered the seal no longer fitted back in to the slot. I tried every which way to get it in but it appears that having removed the back it pulled and stretched the seal slightly and I was no longer able to seal the watch properly. I contacted Garmin who were pretty helpful but said they couldnt supply me with any new seals. Pretty dissapointing. They sent a "used" one but this had the same problem. I just wanted to see if anyone else had experienced any issues like this and if they managed to resolve them.

    Reply
    • Caz replied

      @Barny Boy I have the exact same problem. My fr60's seal is simply too big and will not fit into the little track in the back of the watch. Did you find a solution to the too big o-ring issue? I'm considering cutting it smaller and just filling the back section of the watch with a lot of silicon grease to prevent leaking issues through the small gap that the cut would introduce...

      Reply
  10. Anonymous

    Thanks, my battery was completely dead and i changed it as you demonstrated. It worked fine for a few days, but now the watch wont pick up the foot pod at all. everything else works fine.

    Reply
  11. Sonja

    I recently changed my battery and didn't have any issue with the seal. Unfortuantely, after 4 seconds everything shuts off and it says my memory is full. I have deleted everything, but it shuts itslef down immediately. any thoughts?

    Reply
    • Rainmaker replied

      Ick. You could probably do a hard reset - that might try and get it back to normal.

      Reply
  12. Thea

    I had my FR60 for a year when finally the battery decided it had reached it's max mileage. I took it to a watch repairman who charged me $15 to swapped out the old battery and when he handed it back to me the display read:

    AH02.500
    0000
    AID2.200
    0000

    I figured I just needed to sync my watch up, but that wasn't the case. The Garmin rep I spoke with said that there was some residual charge in the old battery and I would need to get the new battery out and leave the cover off for a short bit then put the new batter in.

    The problem is I've been having a very difficult time trying to get the screws off the back of the watch. Any suggestions?

    Thanks!

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  13. john

    Have the same watch and unfortunately the band broke. With the help of a bicykle tube and super glue I managed to repair it so it looks good enough to wear..

    Reply
    • Lisa replied

      Thea

      I'm having the same problems which are so frustrating. How did you resolve both your issues please Thea?

      Reply
    • Thea Bertoni replied

      Lisa,
      I just saw this, but I ended up having to be patient for a new Garmin to come out. I'm looking at the FR15, which has similar features to the FT60 with the GPS tracking.

      In regards to the FR60, I was able to replace the battery on my own, wait for the residual battery to die out then put the replacement battery in. The only problem was the rubber seal had a tear in it. I did my best to push it into the groove and put the face plate on. The watch worked great for a few weeks until an extremely humid day. I looked at the display and condensation was collecting inside and the next day the watch wouldn't stop beeping. Sadly Garmin's only suggestion was to pay for a refurbished one and I just didn't want to encounter the same challenge with the battery. I need to see if the new FR 15 will be compatible with my existing foot pod and Garmin heart rate strap.

      Good luck, hope you had better luck than I did.

      Thea

      Reply
  14. Cam

    I have changed the battery in my FR60 but it says ERROR on the screen, do you have a solution for this issue? Help please

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  15. Lisa

    Hi Cam this was the advice given by Garmin. Unfortunately it didn't work for me so the only solution was to send the watch back to Garmin who will send me a reconditioned replacement at a cost of £30.00 so I hope you have more luck.
    Garmin advice
    I would recommend a Master Reset on your Forerunner.

    This will reset it back to its factory default settings and wipe any
    data currently stored in the device, so if at all possible, please
    upload any important data before proceeding.

    After the reset has completed you will need to re-enter your profile
    details and zone information or send it from Training Centre or Garmin
    Connect

    I have included instructions for you to perform a reset below:

    1. Press the Mode, Light, and Up buttons until the watch powers off
    2. Release all buttons.

    If this does not work please remove the battery for 10 minutes and
    replace in the device once again.

    Reply
  16. Allan

    I followed instructions on changing out the battery on my FR60m. Before putting the cover back I noticed the display has "ERROR" on it. I removed the battery - waited a few mins for the "ERROR" display to clear and then reseated the new battery back. I can see the display momentarily comes to life and then a sec later shows the same "ERROR" on it. I've tried unsuccessfully to get past the "ERROR". The battery is a brand new CR2032 3V from Energizer. So am not sure what else can be done. Any tips would be appreciated.

    Reply
    • Allan replied

      am replying to my previous post to give an update after contacting Garmin Tech support. Well, it seems like nothing can be done once the "ERROR" message is seen. Tech support had me flip the battery for a few seconds in the slot - I figured this was some sort of way to discharge contents of the watch memory. Reinserted the battery with name plate upside to no avail. Tech support looked up my purchase order and said it was out of warranty and hence not eligible for replacement. They offered an FR70 for $89 which I declined.

      BTW there are several posts of this "ERROR" message seen after the original battery dies. This was a known defect even before I purchased it as a replacement on a RMA# in Jul'2012 and since it lasted more than 3 months I'm out of warranty! What a scam GARMIN! Guess what you have plenty of competition now and with this kind of support you sure will sink with the lot that ships junk!

      Reply
  17. bob Jonsen

    My Garmin forerunner 305 has stopped working. it has less than 30 hours and it will not charge or turn-on need advise on how to locate battery for replacement or should it be returned to Garmin for replacement.

    Reply
    • Ray Maker replied

      Unfortunately the FR305 is non-changeable. You can try and do a hard reset, which if it won't charge at all, sounds like might be the case.

      Reply
  18. Rob Montgomery

    Successfully swapped it out!

    I'm tempted to go throw it in a bowl of water but I think I'll hold off on that, haha.

    Reply
  19. David

    Thanks DC. My FR60 is way past its warranty, its battery is dead, and here in Israel (hope you enjoyed your stay here) there is no proper service center for Garmin - all they do within your warranty period is give you a new watch, no repair work of any kind, be it within or outside the warranty period. So, the only alternative being sending the watch to the nearest service center in the UK (for the sole purpose of changing the battery), I tried to follow your very clear and user friendly explanation. 5 minutes is all it took, including the reset, the watch is alive and good as new. Cheers and keep up the good work. David

    Reply
  20. Keith

    Swapped out the battery but the watch just flashes AHO2.700 and AID2.200 any ideas?

    Reply
  21. Adam Paul

    Hi,
    Thanks for the share. Garmin FR60 battery is very important one. It is very helpful to know about the battery changing ways.

    Reply
  22. rabbit

    What's about the fenix, ray? Which also has only 4 screws on the back ... :)

    Reply
  23. rabbit

    I know- but I try to find someone, who opened the fenix or is going to do it... :)

    and take some pictures of the inside of the fenix ( I know, there are pictures from the fcc - but I am interested in user pictures/experiences).

    My fenix was replaced 3 times per rma in 1 year (fw/hw error; fogging; fogging (again) + battery error) - I have to wait 1 year, before I am going to open it (warranty expiration).

    Reply

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