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Garmin GPS signal acquisition screw-ups

Yesterday my nuvi 255W had a really hard time keeping a GPS signal. Granted, I understand there are times when it will drop signal due to some interference, but generally speaking the nuvi keeps a solid 4 to 5-bar signal with 15 to 30 foot resolution anywhere I go.

Yesterday however it was really messing up. I couldn't get a resolution anywhere closer than 175 feet - and that's seriously crappy.

Usually when this happens that means something is going on weather-wise. But it was a clear day yesterday. So I called in a Garmin RMA. I still have it if I want to use it. However I'm holding off sending this out because, ta-da, now it gets the solid 5-bar acquisition signal I usually get.

I did a Twitter search yesterday and also discovered that several other GPS users (mostly TomTom) were also having a hell of a time holding a signal as well. This leads me to believe that something was possibly going wrong with the GPS grid in space. And yes this does happen because the system is not infallible by any means.

The screw-up happened around 2pm yesterday, so I'm going to test it again to see if the same crappy signal occurs at that time. If it does, I've established a pattern that means that specific GPS satellites that my nuvi 255W is hitting at that time of the day are failing somewhat (if not failing entirely).

It also could be one of those rare instances where the grid had some screw-up that Uncle Sam has now fixed. Who knows.

Or it could be the nuvi 255W is screwing up. But I seriously doubt that.

I was thankful I didn't have to go anywhere important yesterday, because if I did.. eesh. That would have sucked.


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