Garmin USB device not recognized in Windows 11? Fix it now

by Loredana Harsana
Loredana Harsana
Loredana Harsana
Managing Editor
Loredana is a passionate writer with a keen interest in PC software and technology. She started off writing about mobile phones back when Samsung Galaxy S II was... read more
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  • Garmin USB devices risk being unrecognized by your Windows 11 computer when their drivers are outdated.
  • As a first solution, you could try unplugging and replugging the device into your computer.
  • Otherwise, download the latest driver available for your product from the manufacturer's website.
garmin-not-recog garmin usb device not recognized windows 11

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The Garmin GPS itself has the ability to alter files, maps, routes, and waypoints. However, connecting the device to your computer and using the BaseCamp software is usually considerably more efficient. On rare occasions, you may discover that your computer does not recognize the Garmin GPS.

Don’t sweat it as you are not alone in this and USB cable errors are generally easy to solve. In the worst-case scenario, you will have to acquire a new wire for your device.

Follow along as we have put together a comprehensive list of solutions that you can try in order to fix the error, right after we see what else the company produces. Keep up with us!

What does Garmin produce?

Besides GPS devices, the company manufactures activity trackers and sports watches that are designed for activities such as running, watersports, golfing, cycling, swimming, and other sports that require sensors such as heart rate and GPS.

Some newer variants include Bluetooth audio playback as well as pulse-oximetry capabilities. In addition to measuring the duration and quality of sleep, some Garmin products measure body movement, record heart rate, count steps taken, and the number of stairs climbed by the wearer.

maps garmin usb device not recognized windows 11

There is also a series largely targeted towards runners, but the watches are more broadly targeted as well, particularly at the top end of the price spectrum.

Among the features are multi-sport tracking capabilities (for example, automatically switching between sports during a triathlon) and a variety of customized profiles for jogging, swimming, cycling, skiing, and paddle sports, as well as other weight-loss and hiking activities.

It has a built-in heart rate sensor as well as GPS functionality. Most contemporary Garmin devices are capable of displaying their current location on a map that is vector-based and either kept in the device’s built-in memory or loaded from external flash memory.

The built-in (or base map) depicts all country borders and significant cities. The company sells a variety of maps, including precise road maps, topographic maps, and maritime maps, all of which can be downloaded.

What can I do if Garmin USB device is not recognized in Windows 11?

1. Unplug and replug the wire

If your computer is unable to recognize the Garmin device, begin by unplugging and powering down your GPS. Restart the device and connect the USB cable to the port on the back.

Last but not least, reconnect the USB wire to your computer. Your Garmin should display a picture of a GPS unit that is connected to a tower. You should be able to see it on your computer as well as on your phone.

2. Try a different port

If the PC is still unable to locate the Garmin after a reboot, there are a few alternative options to consider attempting. First and foremost, connect it directly to the computer rather than using a USB hub or the Garmin’s own cradle, if it is equipped with one.

You could also try connecting it to a different USB port. Theoretically, any port should function, but this is not always the case in practice.

The same may be said about the USB cable as well. Some cables are designed primarily for charging, while others are designed primarily for data transfer, while still others are designed for both.

Garmin suggests that you only use their proprietary cords, but if you have a variety of USB cables on hand, you can typically swap them around until you find one that works.

3. Download the latest driver

  1. Head to Garmin’s official website and look for the latest driver available.garmin garmin usb device not recognized windows 11
  2. Click on the Download button and follow the on-screen steps to install it on your computer.garmin-download garmin usb device not recognized windows 11

We recommend that you check all of your drivers so that they stay up-to-date. There are multiple ways in which you can update them, but one stands out from all and that is performing automatic updates using software such as DriverFix.

How does GPS work?

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The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based positioning system that is owned by the United States government. The fundamental technique of GPS is to calculate the distance between two receivers while at the same time determining the location of observed satellites.

Note that the predicted positions of the satellites are transmitted to the user together with the GPS signal, which serves as a backup.

The position of the receiver is frequently calculated by comparing several identified positions and, as a result, measuring distances between the receiver and the satellites.

Even more, the speed of the receiver is defined by the difference in location, which can be calculated in relation to time. These satellites are typically located at a height of 20,000 kilometers above the earth’s surface, traveling at a speed of 14,000 kilometers per hour.

gps garmin usb device not recognized windows 11

The Global Positioning System (GPS) uses the mathematical idea of trilateration to determine the location of an object, and it is comprised of approximately 30 satellites orbiting the earth.

It is exceptionally simple to use because it directs you in the right direction for every turn you make. Otherwise, you’d have to take a long detour in order to get to your destination.

GPS operates in all weather conditions, so you don’t have to be concerned about the weather like you would with other navigation gadgets.

The systems fail for a variety of reasons, and in this case, you should have a backup map and directions on hand.

A battery failure could occur if you are using it on a battery-operated device, necessitating the use of an external power supply, which is not always possible.

For more information on products and a list of the five best handheld GPS for hiking and cycling, check out the article linked.

If you encounter issues with Waze, take a look at our guide on what to do if Waze is not connecting to GPS. Those issues are more common than you think so make sure to bookmark the article.

And lastly, don’t miss out on our post including the best Windows 10/11 GPS apps and software to download for those who are on the road on a daily basis.

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