Are Garmin Watches Waterproof?

Alex Nguyen

person wearing black digital watch

Many athletes, swimmers, and outdoor enthusiasts rely on waterproof watches for their activities. Garmin watches are known for their durability and suitability for various sports, including those involving water. Garmin devices are often described as ‘water-resistant’, meaning they can handle some water contact without damage. Most Garmin fitness trackers and smartwatches can resist water up to 50 meters, making them suitable for swimming and other water sports. It’s important to understand the difference between ‘waterproof’ and ‘water-resistant’, as they indicate different levels of protection. Although no watch can be completely ‘waterproof’, Garmin watches offer significant water resistance, tested under specific conditions. These water-resistant features allow users to track their performance in water, thanks to various swim features, timers, and sensors designed to work seamlessly during aquatic activities.

Garmin Watch Water Resistance

Garmin makes a lot of watches. They’re great for running, hiking, or just looking good. But can they get wet?

Water Resistance, Not Waterproof

First, let’s clear something up: no watch is fully waterproof. Even watches made for diving have limits. Garmin watches are water-resistant. This means they can handle some water, but it depends on the model and how much water we’re talking about.

ATM Ratings: What Do They Mean?

Garmin uses ATM ratings to tell you how much water pressure a watch can handle. Here’s a quick guide:

ATM RatingWater PressureWhat You Can Do
3 ATM30 metersSplashing, rain
5 ATM50 metersSwimming, showering
10 ATM100 metersSnorkeling, surface water sports

Which Garmin Watches Are Best for Swimming?

Most Garmin watches can handle a little water, but some are better for swimmers. Look for watches with a 5 ATM rating or higher. Popular choices include:

  • Garmin Swim 2
  • Garmin Descent Mk2 Series
  • Garmin Forerunner 945/955 Series
  • Garmin fenix 6/7 Series
  • Garmin Enduro
  • Garmin epix (Gen 2)

Tips for Keeping Your Garmin Watch Safe in Water

  1. Check the manual: Always check your watch’s manual for specific water resistance info.
  2. Don’t press buttons underwater: This can let water in.
  3. Rinse with fresh water: After swimming in salt water, rinse your watch with fresh water to prevent corrosion.
  4. Dry it off: Pat your watch dry with a soft cloth.
  5. Avoid extreme temperatures: Don’t wear your watch in a hot tub or sauna.

What to Do If Your Garmin Watch Gets Wet

If your watch gets wet and isn’t rated for it, don’t panic. Remove it from the water, dry it off, and let it air dry completely. If it’s not working right, contact Garmin support. They might be able to help.

Key Takeaways

  • Garmin watches offer considerable water resistance, typically up to 50 meters.
  • The term ‘waterproof’ implies an absolute, though no device can be completely impervious to water; Garmin uses ‘water-resistant’.
  • Garmin devices have swim-specific features, making them fit for water sports and activities.

Understanding Water Resistance in Garmin Watches

Garmin watches are designed to handle water exposure with various degrees of protection. They are suited for swimmers, divers, and those who face moisture in daily activities.

Water Resistance Ratings and Standards

Each Garmin watch comes with a water resistance rating, usually noted in atmospheres (ATM). A rating of 5 ATM means the watch can withstand pressures equivalent to 50 meters of depth, which is common among several Garmin lines such as the Forerunner 945 and Vivoactive series. Higher ratings like 10 ATM are also found in select models, offering more protection for activities like snorkeling but not diving.

Garmin Watch Series and Water Resistance

The Garmin Venu 3 and Forerunner series including the Forerunner 965, show high durability against water. The Instinct series presents even greater resistance suitable for rigorous water-related activities. The Garmin Swim 2, as its name suggests, is specially designed for swimming, providing detailed metrics for swim tracking. Garmin designs these devices with water activities in mind, from casual pool swims to open water adventures.

Limitations and Care for Water-Exposed Garmin Watches

While Garmin devices handle water well, they should not be exposed to high-speed water activities or deep-sea diving. Moisture protection is robust against rain, splashes, and showering. Nevertheless, one should always rinse the watch with fresh water after exposure to saltwater, chlorine, or any harmful chemicals to maintain its water-resistant integrity. Regular checks and maintenance are key to ensuring the longevity of the device’s water resistance features.