Garmin: Intermittent Bluetooth

The Garmin Vivosmart HR+ (VS HR+) is the perfect fitness watch because it measures GPS, Heart Rate, steps, Intensity Minutes, floors, and pace. The purpose of this post is to explain workarounds for things that the Vivosmart HR+ does less than perfectly.

Avoiding Intermittent Bluetooth Connections

  • Problem: The Garmin VS HR+ may disconnect itself from a weak Bluetooth signal. Moments later, your Garmin VS HR+ may reconnect itself.
  • Solution: If your cell phone is on, place it within 5′ of your watch whenever you exercise. If your cell phone is off, your cell phone will not pair or unpair from your watch. Here is how to keep a Bluetooth connection:
  • You may exercise close to your Bluetooth phone or far from your Bluetooth phone, but anything in between will lead to constant alerts as to connections lost and made. Garmin sends you an alert by vibrating your watch and arm.
  • When desiring a Bluetooth connection, put your phone in your pocket or on your treadmill (or other exercise equipment). You will desire Bluetooth if you need weather reports or you want to see your progress in real time.
  • When not needing Bluetooth connection, turn off your phone, unpair your phone, or place your phone out of Bluetooth range (say 75′ from a router). For instance, you will not need Bluetooth interruptions during any HIIT.
  • Conclusion: A Garmin at a 50′ range will alternate with being in and out of Bluetooth connectivity. The Garmin will shake each time that the Bluetooth connection is lost or regained. This change in Bluetooth status can happen 10 or more times per hour. Depending on your need to be connected, either put your cell phone very close (in a pocket) or very far (in a locker room) during exercise. If you put the cell phone far away, consider turning off the cell phone to guarantee the phone will not do repeated handshakes with your Garmin.

Tags: Garmin; Vivosmart; HR+; lost data; Bluetooth; lost connections; supported watches; unsupported watches.