Monday, 19 June 2017

Garmin Zumo 590LM battery fix

A permanent fix for an always flat, won't charge Zumo battery

I've been meaning to post this for a while and have been reminded/prompted by several related threads over on ZumoForums. Credit to user stu_m for having the nerve to diddle with the connector in the first place. I'd previously only re-seated the connector a few times to reduce contact resistance and the improvements didn't last.
Please refer to the forum for the origin(s). I will post these details there too, it is just more convenient for me to create here.

Garmin Zumo 590LM.
If your Zumo seems to die within minutes of taking it out of the cradle and doesn't seem to charge no matter how long it's left on charge for or with whatever charger/power supply, then there's a good chance this will work for you.

My fix is slightly more pin-friendly and reduces the risk of bending a pin too much (and crushing or snapping it) and provides improved contact on both sides of the pin and it's mating half, as it should have been at point of manufacture. It's fairly easy to do, you just need a steady hand and good eyesight (or some kind of magnification - close-up pictures here are from a cheap USB microscope).


1. Remove battery.
Press down tab and lift out connector.

2. Remove a pin (one at a time to avoid short-circuit or mixing up the sequence) by using either a pin, small jewellers flat-blade screwdriver or the blade of your scalpel/X-Acto knife to carefully lift the tiny pin-retention tab on the connector housing. Gently pull the wire at the same time and it will slide out.
Lift tab and pull out pin.

3. Insert the knife blade between the "sprung" contact surfaces, either side of the pin and "lean" the blade over slightly (both ways) to expand the gap, it doesn't need much.

Spread the contacting surfaces.

4. Re-insert the pin in to the connector housing.

Back home, ensure the tab is pushed back down.

5. Repeat 2-4 for all pins.

6. Re-insert battery, switch on and you should see an immediate improvement.

In the couple of months since I did this, I've never had my 590 die on me or any low battery warning for that matter. Enjoy!


  1. You are the man! Thousonds of people, even Garmin itself owe you. Thanks a lot.

    1. Thank you! Credit to forum user stu_m though for having the nerve to diddle with the connector in the first place, but I did want to share it beyond the forum.

  2. Many, many thanks for this. it seems that a lot of people have been spending a lot of time getting nowhere. This certainly worked for me, and I'm very surprised that Garmin themselves didn't/haven't found the answer to what is a fairly simple issue. My battery now stays charged when I remove it from the bike mount, and even after a week or so of not being used is still showing a good charge. Something it hasn't done since shortly after I bought it a couple of years ago.
    I agree with your instructions. The connectors are very small, so take care, but it's not a difficult or complicated task.

    1. Glad you got good results too. Simple fix to an annoying problem. Please feel free to share.

  3. Thank you very much Outsider (and of course user stu_m) for giving peace of mind to the entire world of Garmin 590 users, that we lived in a constant nightmare everytime we switched on the GPS. It's really incredible that Garmin never reported this issue and the solution on time. Tight hugs for both of you !! Fernando

  4. Thank you so much for this fix! I had already contacted Garmin and had agreed to pay the $180 exchange charge (out of warranty) in hopes of getting a unit that would charge the battery. Your fix worked perfectly and my GPS is charging for the first time since new. GREAT JOB!

  5. Butt the batteri time is only 1-2 haurs
    Battery fix is not a fix to inprov battery time only battery bug/errors

    1. Without the fix you’d be lucky to get 10 minutes. If you’re getting 1-2 hours then you don’t have a problem.

  6. mine doesn't look like that. The "contact surfaces" is 1 solid block.

    1. Really? On a 590? I’d like to see some photos, get on over to the ZumoForums and post.

  7. Thanks very much for your step by step instructions. After having this problem for months with my garmin I was going to resort to buying a new battery until I came across your post and thought I would give it a try and it worked.
    Thanks again Outsider, Top Man.