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Garmin Instinct 2/2S FAQs & SpecsUpdated 2 years ago

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Garmin Instinct 2/2S FAQs

Garmin Instinct 2/2S Specs

Garmin Instinct 2/2S Tech Support

Garmin Instinct 2/2S FAQs

Setting up the Instinct 2/2s

When powering on the Instinct 2/2s for the first time, you will be prompted to configure your user setting and preferences on the watch. These settings can be changed at any time.

1. Power on the Instinct 2/2s by holding LIGHT/CTRL.

1. Light / CTRL

  • Press to turn on the watch.
  • Press to turn the backlight on and off.
  • Quickly press twice to turn on the screen to use your watch as a flashlight.
  • Hold to view the controls menu.

2. GPS

  • Press to view the activity list and start or stop an activity.
  • Press to choose an option in a menu.

3. Back / Set

  • Press to return to the previous screen.
  • Press to record a lap, rest, or transition during a multisport activity.
  • Hold to view the watch face from any screen.

4. Down / ABC

  • Press to scroll through the widget loop and menus.
  • Hold to view the music controls from any screen.

5. Up / Menu

  • Press to scroll through the widget loop and menus.
  • Hold to view the menu.

2. Choose your language by scrolling through the list using UP and DOWN, press GPS to select the language.

3. Pair the watch to your smartphone with the Garmin Connect app (optional).
NOTE: Paring the watch with Garmin Connect will also register the watch.

4. Proceed through the onscreen prompts to select your preferences and user settings.

5. Set up the Activity Menu by selecting your favorites (optional).

My Instinct 2 will not turn on or charge. What do I do?

If your Garmin device won't turn on or charge, there are some basic troubleshooting steps that you can perform.

Is the Device Possibly Locked up?

In some instances, a device can appear locked up or frozen and not respond to any input including pressing a key, swiping the screen (touchscreen devices), or plugging the device into external power. You can attempt to recover the device by performing the following steps if your device has a physical power button:

NOTE: Following these steps may result in a loss of some data such as recent steps taken (activity trackers) or a loss of current time. To correct the time, sync the device with a smartphone using the Garmin Connect app or a personal computer using Garmin Express. For GPS devices go outside and acquire a GPS signal.

  1. Plug the device into an external power source using the power/data cable.

  2. Press and hold the power button until the screen changes (hold up to 30 seconds).

Is the Charging Cable in Working Condition?

Confirm that the cable is not damaged which would prevent the device from charging. Check the charging pins to ensure they are free of debris and not damaged. Replace the cable if necessary.

Are the Charging Contact Points on the Device in Working Condition?

Check the charging contact points on the device for damage, dirt, or debris. Use a pencil eraser or a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to clean them.

Is the Battery on the Device Fully Charged?

Plug the device into a power source using the power/data cable.

How do I set up which notifications display on my Instinct 2/2S watch?

Controlling which notifications you see on your Garmin device is managed from your phone. Steps differ between Apple and Android.


Notifications are managed from the iOS notification setting on the phone.

  1. From the iPone select Settings.
  2. Select Notifications.
  3. From the top of the screen, make sure Show Previews is set to Always or When Unlocked. This is a setting required by Apple to display notifications on a Bluetooth paired device.
  4. A little farther down the screen, under NOTIFICATION STYLE, select the app you want to configure (e.g., Messages, Mail, etc.).
  • To SEE NOTIFICATIONS for a specific app on your Garmin device:
    • Allow Notifications should be toggled on.
    • Under ALERTS, make sure there is a check mark under Notification Center.
    • At the bottom, under OPTIONS or LOCK SCREEN APPEARANCE, you must have Show Previews set to either Always or When Unlocked. This is a setting required by Apple to display notifications on a Bluetooth paired device.
  • To DISABLE NOTIFICATIONS from displaying on your Garmin device:
    • Choose the app you want to control from the NOTIFICATIONS SETTINGS screen.
    • Under ALERTS, uncheck Notification Center. This will also result in notifications no longer appearing in the phone's notifications no longer appearing in the phone's notification center.

Repeat step 4 for each individual app to either allow or disable notifications from the app.


Controlling what notifications display on your Garmin device can be managed from the Garmin Connect app.

  1. Open the Garmin Connect app on your phone.
  2. Select menu bars (top left).
  3. Select Settings.
  4. Select Notifications.
  5. Select App Notifications.

From here, toggle to enable or disable all smart notifications or customize by selecting individual apps.

Why is the Weather Widget not displaying any weather information?

Weather data not displaying can present itself in a few different ways:

  • Weather data is not available message
  • Waiting for data message
  • Widget may display an exclamation icon

Common Troubleshooting Steps

  • Confirm the Garmin device is paired and connected to the phone through the Garmin Connect app.
  • Confirm the Bluetooth setting on your smartphone and your Garmin device is turned on.
  • For GPS capable Garmin devices, start an outdoor activity and briefly step outdoors to acquire GPS signal.
  • For Apple phones, make sure the Garmin Connect app is open and/or running in the background. The app can be minimized but, it must remain open in the background to receive weather information.
  • Confirm that the Location permissions for Garmin Connect are set properly.

Why is the Weather Widget showing incorrect weather data?

The accuracy of the weather data displayed on a Garmin watch or Edge bike computer can vary depending on several factors:

  • Garmin devices request weather data once every 20 minutes at most. Make sure to sync your device to refresh the most up to date weather data.
  • The weather forecast on a Garmin device can appear less accurate than the current temperature if the data is stale and has not been updated recently.

Common Troubleshooting Steps:

  • Make sure to leave the Garmin Connect app running in the background on your phone. Closing the app can prevent weather data from being retrieved.
  • Make sure to have the correct units of measure setting on your Garmin device (Fahrenheit vs. Celsius). Refer to your owner's manual to learn where you can change your Units setting.
  • Confirm that the Location permissions for Garmin Connect are set properly.

Customizing the Glance Loop

You can change the order of the glances in the loop, remove glances, and add new glances.

  1. Hold MENU.
  2. Select AppearanceGlances.
  3. Select an option:
    • Select a glance, and press UP or DOWN to change the location of the glance in the loop.

    • Select a glance, and select Delete to remove the glance from the loop.

    • Select Add, and select a glance to add it to the loop.

Customizing the Data Screens

You can show, hide, and change the layout and content of data screens for each activity.

  1. Hold MENU.
  2. Select SettingsActivities & Apps.
  3. Select the activity to customize.
  4. Select the activity settings.
  5. Select Data Screens.
  6. Select a data screen to customize.
  7. Select an option:
    • Select Layout to adjust the number of data fields on the data screen.

    • Select a field to change the data that appears in the field.

    • Select Reorder to change the location of the data screen in the loop.

    • Select Remove to remove the data screen from the loop.

  8. If necessary, select Add Newto add a data screen to the loop.

    You can add a custom data screen, or select one of the predefined data screens.

Where can I find the Garmin Instinct 2/2S Manual?

Click here to see the Instinct 2/2S manual.

See more Instinct 2/2S FAQs:

Click on this link for more Instinct 2/2S FAQs.

Garmin Instinct 2/2S Product Specifications


  • LENS MATERIAL: scratch-resistant Corning® Gorilla® Glass
  • BEZEL MATERIAL: fiber-reinforced polymer
  • STRAP MATERIAL: silicone 
  • INSTINCT 2S DISPLAY RESOLUTION: 156 x 156 pixels (active area)
  • DISPLAY TYPE: monochrome, sunlight-visible, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP)
  • Smartwatch: Up to 28 days
  • Battery Saver Watch Mode: Up to 65 days
  • GPS: Up to 30 hours
  • Max Battery GPS Mode: Up to 70 hours
  • Expedition GPS Activity: Up to 32 day

View a full list of Instinct 2/2S specs.

Need further troubleshooting? No problem!

For further technical support, we recommend contacting Garmin's fantastic technical support team—this can be done in two ways:

As an Authorized Garmin dealer, any Instinct 2/2S sold on is completely eligible for Garmin's 1-Year Limited Manufacturer Warranty. So you can be confident you'll be protected from any product defects within 365 of your delivery date!

When you purchase an Instinct 2/2S on, you have 60 days to return or exchange it—no questions asked!  

The team is here to support you the entire way! So if you're not getting the help you need, please contact us via Help Center (email, chat or phone) and we'll make sure you're taken care of.

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