Multisport- Waterproofing Failure


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After reading several comments on this message board, and my own experiences with my watch as well as my wife's watch, it is my opinion that TomTom has a design flaw in their Multisport, Runner, and probably the Spark watches that causes the waterproofing seal to fail. Both of our watches developed condensation below the glass screen and shortly afterward both watches failed to respond to button pushes or computer connections (including recharging). My wife's watch failed while under warranty, but it appears that most (including my watch) fail after the warranty period expires and TomTom will not offer a solution other than buying another watch. It clearly states on the underside of the watch that it is "Water Resistant 5ATM". Until TomTom offers a re-design or repair of this flaw, I would be hesitant to purchase any of their Multisport or fitness watches.

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DJack58 wrote:

After reading several comments on this message board, and my own experiences with my watch as well as my wife's watch, it is my opinion that TomTom has a design flaw in their Multisport, Runner, and probably the Spark watches that causes the waterproofing seal to fail. Both of our watches developed condensation below the glass screen and shortly afterward both watches failed to respond to button pushes or computer connections (including recharging). My wife's watch failed while under warranty, but it appears that most (including my watch) fail after the warranty period expires and TomTom will not offer a solution other than buying another watch. It clearly states on the underside of the watch that it is "Water Resistant 5ATM". Until TomTom offers a re-design or repair of this flaw, I would be hesitant to purchase any of their Multisport or fitness watches.



A handful of messages on the forums out of millions of watches sold does not constitute a manufacturing defect or design flaw. I have 3 watches and have used them daily for 3 years with no issues. What sort of activities are you using them for, is it primarily swimming? Are you showering with it on or wear it in a steam room (some people do)?
I would suspect that many people don't use the forums to investigate or comment about problems with their watches. It would be very interesting to get a true number of failed watches, but that's not really possible, is it?

I find it suspicious that of the two watches that I have purchased, both failed in the exact same manner.

My wife and I are both triathletes, therefore we use the watches when swimming, biking & running. Neither of us wear the watch in the shower, hot tub, steam room, etc. If the watch can't be used for its advertised purposes, TT should not sell them for that purpose. Tfarabaugh, what do you use the watch for, a timepiece?

Also, my battery finally died today so I was able to dock it to my computer and perform a factory reset. This reset did not correct the problem.

I suppose I really just have an expensive timepiece now, and it can only be recharged after the battery dies.

BOO TomTom!!!

Tfarabaugh, please understand that I am not upset with you, I'm just frustrated with the product.

Thanks for your help.
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DJack58 wrote:

I would suspect that many people don't use the forums to investigate or comment about problems with their watches. It would be very interesting to get a true number of failed watches, but that's not really possible, is it?

I find it suspicious that of the two watches that I have purchased, both failed in the exact same manner.

My wife and I are both triathletes, therefore we use the watches when swimming, biking & running. Neither of us wear the watch in the shower, hot tub, steam room, etc. If the watch can't be used for its advertised purposes, TT should not sell them for that purpose. Tfarabaugh, what do you use the watch for, a timepiece?

Also, my battery finally died today so I was able to dock it to my computer and perform a factory reset. This reset did not correct the problem.

I suppose I really just have an expensive timepiece now, and it can only be recharged after the battery dies.

BOO TomTom!!!

Tfarabaugh, please understand that I am not upset with you, I'm just frustrated with the product.

Thanks for your help.



No offense taken, I was just trying to get to the root cause of the issue. And as you are both using the watch while swimming, which I understand is actually the least used activity of the watch you may be right that the waterproofing is weak. Since fewer people use it for swimming than the other functions, it would make sense that there would be fewer complaints, even if the rate of failure is higher for that activity. I primarily run, cycle and do gym activities so mine is not regularly getting submerged. I know they will offer a steeply discounted price to replace a watch out of warranty (it basically covers the processing costs), but it does you no good to get another product that is likely to not fit your purposes again, even at a lower price. Unfortunately it may be time for you to move on to another brand that serves your purpose better (and you could also get true triathlon functionality elsewhere as well).

I hope this helps, please let me know if this answered your question. If it did, please mark it as a solution so others can look for it if they have the same question.
Bump... to move this message to the top of the page.
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DJack58 wrote:

Bump... to move this message to the top of the page.



Kind of pointless, moving it to the top o the page does not get it any more attention from TT and it will be back on the bottom tomorrow. There are simply not enough people with the issue or interested in it to keep the thread going (which is a pretty clear indicator that it is not a widespread issue).
Hi,
I have the same issue with a multisport.
After 6 months first failure. After swimming the button did not work.
As it was under warranty I sent it to tomtom and received a new one. Now 6 months later (6+6=1 year after I bought it) again the same and again tomtom will send me another unit.
As soon my warranty will expire I would like to know if something has been done to improve the product or will it loose again the waterproof after 6 months? In that case I will just use the new unit for out of water activities.
Thanks!
This has now happened to me. I have a Runner Cardio watch for running (not swimming) and suddenly the screen has steamed up and the button has stopped working. My watch is out of warranty, so it looks like a repair, but this shouldn't happen after around 20 months use.
Same issue here. I had intermittent damp underneath my screen for a while now, but it seems the unit has given up fully now with a button that's not working. It just seems to go in any random direction (mostly right) regardless what side I push. I've e-mailed the customer support, fingers crossed.
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Rudy_tri wrote:

Same issue here. I had intermittent damp underneath my screen for a while now, but it seems the unit has given up fully now with a button that's not working. It just seems to go in any random direction (mostly right) regardless what side I push. I've e-mailed the customer support, fingers crossed.



I would suggest taking a direct approach and calling them as it can be awhile before they get back to you on email. To get the number for Customer Support, go to http://tomtom.com/support, choose Contact, enter the product name and click Phone Us. It will give you the phone number for the country your account is registered under (this can be changed by clicking the flag icon in the bottom right corner of the screen).
Another one with the same issue. Had my Runner for 2 ½ years, it has been mostly reliable but some fogging under the screen, today after a rainy day run it has died completely. Button won't work and it won't connect to anything, just shows the time and date. I only wear it when running so I guess 2 ½ years is the effective life of a Tom Tom Runner. I will see what support have to say.
Hi all,

I'm back on this forum. Last and this year I've focussed on cycling with a garmin 810. Since last week I went back to the swimming pool and after 2 swims my Multisport has died... 😞
It started with a flipping watch and a software reset via TomTom Connect resulted in a working but slow responding watch. After my swim on Friday it permanently died.

To my opinion this isn't a user fault/issue. How can TomTom help me?
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indobesar wrote:

Hi all,

I'm back on this forum. Last and this year I've focussed on cycling with a garmin 810. Since last week I went back to the swimming pool and after 2 swims my Multisport has died... 😞
It started with a flipping watch and a software reset via TomTom Connect resulted in a working but slow responding watch. After my swim on Friday it permanently died.

To my opinion this isn't a user fault/issue. How can TomTom help me?



TomTom can help you if you contact Customer Support, this is just a user forum. CS can determine if the watch is defective and replace it if appropriate. To get the number for Customer Support, go to http://tomtom.com/support, choose Contact, enter the product name and click Phone Us. It will give you the phone number for the country your account is registered under (this can be changed by clicking the flag icon in the bottom right corner of the screen).
Ok, great! Thanks.

Btw, in 2014 some TomTom employees were on this forum for 1st line support.
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indobesar wrote:

Ok, great! Thanks.

Btw, in 2014 some TomTom employees were on this forum for 1st line support.



The moderators will facilitate getting in touch with Customer Support if people are having problems, but you still need to contact CS.
It appears (to my knowledge) that TomTom has not addressed the waterproofing issue. It's a shame because I really liked the sleek design and display format of the multisport watch.

With that said, my wife and I have both given up on our two (2) TomTom multisport watches and now have purchased Garmin Forerunner watches. I have the Forerunner 910XT and she has the Forerunner 920XT and they both work flawlessly and perform all the tasks we need as triathletes.

In my opinion, TomTom must resolve the waterproofing issue with their sport watches or let the consumers know that they are not reliable as submersible watches.
Seems like quite a number of people are having the same problem with the TomTom watches. Has TT made any effort to correct the freezing or locking up of the watch?
Yes I've had the same issue 4/5 times in 15/16months of owning! No Multisport watch supplied by TomTom has ever lasted over 5 months!! I'm also a triathlete and use these for swimming 3-5 times a week, unfortunately they're just not made to cope with the stresses of the pool on a continuous basis. Finally being sent a TT2spark which apparently doesn't have the same issues
Same issue happened to me. After swim, buttons went dead. At the advice of tomtom support, waited several (weeks) for the battery to completely drain. I was then able to connect the watch to my computer. I performed a complete reset and recharged the battery. I then took the watch off the charger. The buttons kind of worked briefly (they would move to the next screen, but not stay on the next screen, they would go back) then it froze again. Watch is now completely frozen again. I'm stuck.

I believe, based on what I've experienced, that this is a mechanical issue with the watch. Over time, the buttons fail, possibly due to a seal breaking. Unfortunately, by then, your watch is probably out of warranty. I guess this is what you get for a $150 watch vs a $450 Garmin!
Same thing happened to me about 13 months in. Fortunately, they honored the warranty and sent me a replacement watch. However, after 3 days of having it, the replacement watch turns itself off when I snap it back into the wrist strap. The first watch worked great until the water intrusion. Might be getting a third watch soon. Ugh!
Does this problem also apply to the Runner 3? I have only just received mine and I don't want to swim with it if there is a problem.
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No, it was an issue with the original MultiSport watches, which came out 4 years ago.
Thank you. Very relieved to hear that.
Having same problem. 3yr old multisport now flipping screens and won't go into any mode. Completely unusable. Started happening after wearing in the water for an hour. Seems like no solution has been discovered. I've enjoyed this watch, but garmin is the likely replacement.
Having same problem; now on a "new" replacement model and issue continues. I am a competitive paddler, so the watch is not submerged but will get splashed upon. Both watches lasted approximately 11 - 13 months. There is precipitation beneath the watch face, and the reset is not working. Like DSW, " waited several (weeks) for the battery to completely drain. I was then able to connect the watch to my computer. I performed a complete reset and recharged the battery. I then took the watch off the charger. The buttons kind of worked briefly (they would move to the next screen, but not stay on the next screen, they would go back) then it froze again. Watch is now completely frozen again". I found the GPS was much better on the TomTom than on the Garmin, but a waterproof watch, should still be waterproof. I will bring it back to Best Buy where I bought and see what they say before contacting Customer Support.
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The MultiSports seemed to have seal issues which do not exist in the later ewatches (I imagine this is part of the reason the MS has been discontinued). If you end up getting a new watch, get a Spark3 or later, they are much better units with far less issues.

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