Garmin Nuvi 550 cable no worky, tech support problems

Discussion in 'Mapping & Navigation' started by inmate-n00b, May 2, 2011.

  1. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

    Joined:
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    1,006
    I bought a garmin mounting cradle and the power cable stopped working.
    My garmin unit is fine. I looked at the fuse and it didn't blow. I'm pretty sure that the transformer broke.
    Here's the photo of the power cable here:
    [​IMG]
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001CX4INE
    I bought this thing in December 2010.
    I thought that I would be able to replace it under warranty, since it didn't last long.

    It doesn't look like Garmin wants to replace my power cable. Here's my email communication from Garmin tech support.
    MY TEXT IS IN BLUE
    GARMIN's TEXT IS IN YELLOW
    ^^I went ahead and made a pdf copy of my amazon.com order.
    I checked on amazon.com. They only offer 30 day returns. Dang.
    :bluduh
    It looks like now I'm s.o.l because I bought the thing from amazon??!!
    The only thing I can do is buy another cable, which means more of my money goes to Garmin. That sucks. :2cry
    WTF should I do?
    #1
  2. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    I have the Garmin cable you had problems with on my ST1100, but one of these on my Bonneville
    http://www.gpscity.com/gilsson-bare-wire-power-cable.html

    Honestly the Garmin one is much more robust, this Gilsson one doesn't include a fuse either. I haven't had any problems with either of the cables so far though:dunno
    #2
  3. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    i've heard of some folks having problems with their transformers.
    it hasnt even been a year and it stopped working.
    i haven't done any hardcore riding with it.
    this is so hella-lame....
    #3
  4. 9Dave

    9Dave Bazinga!

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    So did you contact the seller to see if they would warranty it?

    But more importantly, did you take a voltmeter and check the connectivity and output at the connectors and fuse block to identify where the power ceases to flow? That would be the first thing to do.
    #4
  5. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

    Joined:
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    The power cable is definitely getting power. I checked.
    Also, the fuse didn't blow.
    I haven't checked the micro usb with my multimeter. It was hard to get to the pins inside. I will try again.
    Another thing is that the transformer gets kinda warm. This isn't the heat from the engine.

    Amazon will only accept a 30 day return. So it's too late.
    The thing was manufactured by Garmin. Should there be a manufacturer's warranty?
    I think I'm screwed.:eek1
    #5
  6. mcnut

    mcnut Long timer

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    I have the same kit and so far it is working OK.
    Garmin is usually very good about warranty items, I'm thinking the problem may be that at one time Amazon was a Garmin authorized dealer but may no longer be. If I remember correctly there was a notice about Amazons dealer status in the not to distant past. I just looked on Amazon at their listing for a Nuvi 500 and don't see a reference to any warranty that I can find.

    I would contact Garmin again and in a very direct manner ask what the manufactures warranty is for this kit and why Garmin is not honoring that warranty. If they say you purchased it from a non dealer you may indeed be SOL, on the other hand how does Amazon have access to thousands of Garmin units if they are not a Dealer?

    Bruce
    #6
  7. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    Ok. Thanks for the input, everyone.
    I will replace the fuse, as well, and try again.
    #7
  8. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    Well I replaced the fuse and tried again and it still didn't work.
    I asked Garmin about the manufacturers warranty.


    So that's nice! :clap I wonder why they didn't tell me that to begin with. It was a different customer service rep this time, so maybe that's it.

    I'm going to open up the transformer and see if there was a mechanical failure inside. If so, I need to rig a way to prevent this from happening again!!!! Maybe the vibrations or heat from the engine caused the thing to break.
    The cable and transformer sit where the red arrow points to in the photo I attached (ignore the finger). It's between the airbox and battery. I was thinking of packing it in a plastic container with some styrofoam.

    Any ideas? I guess I need to figure out what the problem was originally.

    Attached Files:

    #8
  9. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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  10. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    I will clean the connections and try again.
    I couldn't see any corrosion, but it's worth trying again.
    I should cover the mini usb end, anyways.

    Thx for the link.
    Hopefully it's not the transformer.
    #10
  11. Mike955i

    Mike955i Future Escapee

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    Purchased 3 of these for my Nuvi 550 and 2 died on their very first ride (950 ADV in Death Valley and 525EXC at the local OHV park). The one on my street bike works fine but I don't trust it now. Plus, the power wires are the smallest I've ever seen in an automotive product. :huh

    Same boat as you, past 30 days with Amazon, I just chalk it up to a hard lesson learned. I now have a direct wired 12v adapter with a dual USB plug epoxied in place (and dielectric grease in the usb ports). So far, so good.

    FWIW, good luck........Mike
    #11
  12. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    Are we talking about the same thing? The Garmin one I have has pretty heavy-guage wire :dunno

    Now thw Gilsson one on my Bonneville...
    #12
  13. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    Do you know why they died?
    Was it the usb connection or the transformer?
    #13
  14. Mike955i

    Mike955i Future Escapee

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    Can't say, I was at DV when the first died and had to scramble a fix in the field. When the 2nd died I just removed it, no troubleshooting on my part.

    Sorry.....Mike
    #14
  15. Mike955i

    Mike955i Future Escapee

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    #15
  16. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    #16
  17. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    I cleaned the connections with WD-40 and a brush and it still doesn't work.
    I checked the fuse and it's fine.
    I may replace the fuse, but I'm pretty sure it's the transformer.

    Maybe it was the heat and/or vibration from the engine that killed the cable.
    #17
  18. inmate-n00b

    inmate-n00b Ciao, Marco

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    yes, the wires have a small gauge.
    kinda fragile.
    #18
  19. mcnut

    mcnut Long timer

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    #19
  20. tbirdsp

    tbirdsp REMF

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    Yeah, I'm sure the voltage regulator always draws juice. I always hook my 60Cx up to the battery, but with the Nuvi I go to a switched source.
    #20