Fenix 6 users may experience boot loops on the Fenix 6 devices. The issue may manifest on any Fenix 6 model smartwatch. A boot loop implies that the Fenix 6 device will not go beyond the initial boot screen. It will continuously reboot to reach the boot screen and then repeat the process again. You would only see the Garmin arrow on the watch screen before the watch reboots. It will reach the same screen again and reboot. This is a never-ending cycle on the Fenix 6 devices. The watch becomes unusable. It is a frustrating experience for a Fenix 6 user to see the device power up and down indefinitely.
The Fenix 6 smartwatches that are impacted by indefinite boot loops are:
- Fenix 6 Standard Edition
- Fenix 6S
- Fenix 6S Pro and Sapphire Edition
- Fenix 6S Pro Solar
- Fenix 6X
- Fenix 6X Pro and Sapphire Edition
- Fenix 6X Pro Solar
All models of the Fenix 6 smartwatch are affected by this issue with an indefinite power cycle or boot loop.
What causes boot loops on Fenix 6 smartwatch?
Firmware update 20.50 for the Fenix 6 smartwatches has caused an intermittent issue with boot loops on the Fenix 6 device. This firmware was released by Garmin on 14th February. Did you install the firmware 20.50 on your Fenix 6 device? If yes, then the boot loops are likely to be caused by the firmware version 20.50.
Garmin has acknowledged the issue. It has been fixed in the latest firmware update for Garmin Fenix 6 devices. Firmware 20.60 for Fenix 6 device contains the fix for indefinite boot loops on the smartwatch. As of now, Garmin has released firmware version 23 in August 2022. It would be a good idea to use Garmin Express or Garmin Connect app on the mobile smartphone to update firmware of your Fenix 6 to the latest software update version 23.
On a similar note, there has been issue with firmware version 22.10 for Garmin Fenix 6 devices. The watch reboots in the middle of an activity. This issue has also been resolved in the next stable release firmware version 23 for Garmin Fenix 6.
How to fix the boot loop on Fenix 6 smartwatches?
In most cases, boot loops arise out of firmware updates.
- There could have been issues in the firmware deployed on the Fenix 6 watch.
- Or, the firmware was not deployed completely.
- The firmware update process was not undertaken properly.
- If using Garmin Connect app, the paired smartphone may have died out due to low battery.
To try and resolve boot loops on the Fenix 6 smartwatch, please following the instructions below:
- Power off and then Power on the Garmin Fenix 6 smartwatch.
- If powering off and on of Fenix 6 device does not resolve the problem, try to hard reset the Fenix 6 watch.
- You can hard reset your watch by holding down the watch top left button until your watch shuts off.
- If hard resetting the Fenix 6 watch does not help, you can factory reset your Garmin Fenix 6 watch.
- Before doing a factory reset on your Garmin Fenix 6, synchronize the device with Garmin Connect app to upload all activity data of your Fenix 6 to the smartphone based app.
As a word of caution, we do suggest keeping your Fenix 6 device on the stable release version of the firmware. If your Fenix 6 device is not experiencing any boot loop issues, please desist from the beta software update on Fenix 6. Beta updates are pretty frequently created. And, stable release version of the firmware is designed to give you a fulfilling experience.
As of today, the latest stable release firmware version for Fenix 6 device is the software update version 23. It was released in August 2022.
How can I install the firmware version 23 on Garmin Fenix 6?
Firmware version 23 for Fenix 6 was released in August 2022. It is a major release of software update from Garmin because Fenix 6 devices encountered multiple issues after the firmware update to version 22.10. The firmware update for version 23 on Fenix 6 is being rolled out to the eligible devices automatically in a phased approach.
Firmware 23 can be deployed on the Fenix 6 device through the Garmin Connect app. Launch the Garmin Connect app on the paired smartphone. Keep the Fenix 6 paired connection active. Also, keep the watch in close proximity to the paired smartphone. If your device is eligible, the firmware version 23 gets downloaded to the paired smartphone through the Garmin Connect app.
From the Garmin Connect app, the update gets pushed out to the Fenix 6 smartwatch automatically.
You can also install the firmware version 23 on your Fenix 6 device through the Garmin Express program on your computer. Launch the Garmin Express program on your computer and also connect the Fenix 6 device to the computer through a cable connection.
If your Fenix 6 device is eligible and the update is available for your Fenix 6 device, you will be able to download the firmware onto the computer. From the computer, the firmware version 23 will get pushed out to the Fenix 6 smartwatch. You will need to make sure that the computer to Fenix 6 device connection is good.
In both cases, your phone and the computer need to be connected to the Internet for downloading the firmware version 23 for Fenix 6 device.
Does boot loop persist after the firmware update to 23 on Fenix 6?
In most cases, the boot loop issue on the Fenix 6 smartwatch will get resolved after the update of firmware to the latest stable release software version 23. However, if the problem persists after a firmware update from 21.80 or 22.10 to 23, please contact Garmin support. Depending upon your Fenix 6 watch’s warranty coverage you may be eligible for a watch replacement. If your Fenix 6 is out of warranty, you may be able to get a refurbished Fenix 6 watch for a replacement fee.
Fenix 6 devices have had an issue with indefinite boot loops and power cycles after updating the firmware to version 20.50. Similar issues have been reported after firmware update to version 21.80. The issue of indefinite boot loops has been considered a bug that has risen out of the firmware version 20.50. We suggest patching the Fenix 6 device with the latest stable release firmware version 23 which was released in August 2022. Alternatively, if you can manage to deploy the beta updates on your Fenix 6 device, please update to the latest beta firmware update for Fenix 6. The beta update files can be manually downloaded from the Garmin website.
You may also like to read more about Garmin devices below:
- Garmin Fenix 6 – Your Questions
- Garmin smartwatch for small wrist
- Garmin watches with multi band GPS
- Fenix 7 Sapphire Solar Smartwatches
- Fenix 7S Solar vs Fenix 7 Solar v Fenix 7X Solar Watches
- Garmin Fenix 7 vs Epix 2 Smartwatches
Rajesh Dhawan is a technology professional who loves to blog about smart wearables, Cloud computing and Microsoft technologies. He loves to break complex problems into manageable chunks of meaningful information.