Garmin Fenix 3 – Factory Reset / Restart / Reboot / Master

Suunto Spartan Ultra vs Garmin Fenix3

Suunto Spartan Ultra vs Garmin Fenix3

A HARD reset will return the watch to the unpersonalised state in which it arrived when you bought it. It will keep the current firmware. Some settings will, or can be, be downloaded from Garmin Connect. So you don’t REALLY want to do a hard reset unless you have to.

  1. Try a Simple Reboot (‘soft reset’ or ‘reset’)
  • Hold the power key until the menu appears.
  • Choose power off.
  • Press the power key again to restart. Simple!

2. Simple Reboot – Variant

  • Hold the power button for 20-30 seconds.

3. Upgrade Reset

If available you might be able to re-install the current firmware OR install the latest beta firmware. OK, beta software is not ideal but it will reset your device AND it will/should keep ALL/most of your settings.

You will get upgraded to the next ‘proper’ firmware release when available.


Do NOT try to install beta firmware and then back-install the last non-beta firmware. This WILL work perfectly well BUT you will lose all your settings. Again, you don’t really want to do that if you can help it.

Fenix 3To hard reset your Garmin Fenix 3 watch you have two options, through the menu, if you can access to it, or through a hotkey “hardware-bootloader combination”

4. Hard-reset or Factory-reset – Option A


5. Hard-reset or Factory-reset – Option B

  • Turn OFF the Fenix
  • Press and *HOLD* LAP button.
  • Yep, HOLD it.
  • Power on
  • You will get the menu “Clean user data: Yes/No?” release LAP button.
  • You know what to do….

6. Hard-reset or Factory-reset – Option C

  • Turn OFF the Fenix.
  • If this is not possible try to get it to reboot in another way – see previous options
  • Press and release POWER button and the watch should enter the boot sequence
  • Press and hold THE TWO BUTTONS ON THE RIGHT HAND SIDE once the Garmin logo appears
  • Beep 1: release START button
  • Beep 2: release BACK button
  • Sorted


If you have no access to the watch – either its menus OR as a USB device – then you have no real way of saving any personalised settings and data. But if you CAN access the data on your watch then bear in mind the following:

  1. You will lose: VO2max and LTHR
  2. Distance totals.
  3. Calibration data – such as footpod calibration
  4. Apps, widgets, data fields…all your CIQ stuff
  5. Sport profiles – eg the data field layouts per screen

HEADS-UP: This Garmin link MAY help back up some settings so that you can later restore them to the resetted watch. Note, I know this link doesn’t apply to the Fenix 3 and I haven’t really looked or tested anything on that link BUT it MIGHT just work and it MIGHT just help…or not. Have a look if you are desperate and let me know. It’s just easier sometimes to bite the bullet and start again with a freshly cleaned device 🙁


Or just upgrade to a Fenix 5 🙂

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