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Back to English with Garmin


A few days ago we wrote about people with TomTom devices that had accidentally selected the wrong language and wanted to get back to English. We’ve had a few similar emails recently from Garmin owners with the same issue, so here is a tutorial for the Nuvi. Note though that the menu structure changes a little bit across the different Nuvi models, so we’ll show the instructions here on a couple of different models.

Nuvi 200 Series Example

Nuvi 200 English MenuStart by turning the Nuvi off if it is on, and then turn it back on so that you are certain you are back at the main menu. The main menu is pictured at the right, click on the wrench icon near the lower right to enter the configurations menu.

Nuvi 200 English SettingsOnce in the configuration menu, click on the “gears” icon near the upper left corner of the menu, it should be there at the top of the list. This is the Settings menu.

Nuvi 200 English LanguageThis next menu will be a little bit more difficult to navigate in a different language. Click the down arrow once, and then select the second item from the top of the list. In this case you can clearly see that it says ‘Language’, however you might have to hunt a little. Again it should be the second item in the list after you have clicked the down arrow once.

Nuvi 200 Language TextNow that you are in the language menu, the second item in this list is the ‘text’ menu. Changing this menu first will make it easier to change back any other settings that might be incorrect. šŸ˜‰ Tap on the button to the right of the second item in the list to bring up the list of languages.

Nuvi 200 English SelectFinally, in the Language menu scroll through the list of languages until you see ‘American English’. Select that item and then click the ‘OK’ button at the bottom. Your Nuvi should now look a whole lot more familiar to you.

Nuvi 700 Series Example

Nuvi 700 English MenuThe Nuvi 700 series is fairly similar, with a few subtle changes. Again, it might help to turn the Nuvi off and then back on to make sure you are at the main menu. From the main menu, click on the wrench icon near the lower right corner of the screen.

Nuvi 700 English SettingsFrom the menu, look for another wrench icon, this time in the upper left corner, which represents the Settings menu. Click on the wrench icon.

Nuvi 700 English LanguageNow in the Settings menu, look for the Lips icon which should be in the first column of the second row… the lower left of the big white buttons. Click on the lips.

Nuvi 700 English TextIn the Language menu now, you want to change the language text which is displayed near the upper right corner of the three displayed buttons.

Nuvi 700 English SelectFinally, in the language menu, look for ‘American English’. It may not be at the top of the list as this example photo shows, however you can use the down arrow to scroll through until you find it. Select ‘American English’ and click ‘OK’. You should now be back with a familiar language.

19 Responses

  1. I goofed. After completing the first 3 steps correctly, I selected the Language (1st box) instead of the 2nd box (Text). Now I see American English in the Language but cannot select an English on the text box. Please help!

    Jeanne - November 7th, 2008
    • I followed steps. clicked on American English.? is in left corner. At bottom of screen is niow.Right bottom of screen is Enavayopa. How do I get out of this lang? Please Help!

      Janette - May 9th, 2009
      • somehow i got a foreign language on my garmin. the left bottom screen shows “niow” and the right bottom screen shows
        “enavayopa”. How do I get back to english?

        greg - March 3rd, 2011
  2. i was tryin to change the voice and i did the language and im in the cesky language and dont know how to cahnge it back to english please help? soon

    kelsey - February 18th, 2009
  3. I bought a new garmin nuvi 1390 and accidentally it was switched to chinese (?other asian language). I have tried to get back to english but I could not find this language bar. How can I go back to English language in this mechine?

    Mohammed - January 13th, 2010
  4. I have bought a nuvo 260W and accidentally selected the wrong language. Icannot get past the spanner symbol. After that it just loops and of course as it is some foreign language I have no idea what it says. Can anyone help?

    Tim - February 21st, 2010
  5. I have bought a nuvo 255W and accidentally selected the wrong language. I cannot get past the spanner symbol. After that it just loops and of course as it is some foreign language I have no idea what it says. How can I bring up this machine to English? Can anyone help?

    lahcen ezzaher - February 28th, 2010
  6. What a relief! It help me alot!!!
    youre a problem solver, my Garmin nuvi 750 from Arabic language is now english.


    GW - March 28th, 2010
  7. This was a great website. It really helped me change the language on my Garmin. Thank you so much, you’re a life saver.

    Brenda - June 10th, 2010
  8. I wad distacted when setting up my new Garmin Nuvi 3779
    Its now in a language I dont understand and I cant figure how to get it back to english

    I just get a scree with a leaf and unlocked padlock

    Please help

    Steve - July 16th, 2010
    • I received a garmin nuvi 1350 for Christmas. I apprarently hit the wrong button and have a foreign language Unable to get it to english. What am I doing wrong?

      Sheryl - March 19th, 2011
  9. Hi, I have a Garmin nuvi 205 series. The information above is kinda helpful, but my problem is that you display the information in english. I want to get back to english. My Garmin is in spanish. I see the wrench, I see the wheels for settings but after that I don’t understand and nothing looks close to english as options. Please help!

    Jackie - September 17th, 2010
  10. Hi, I’m still having a problem after I choose English. I can’t find the ok button. Every button just takes me back to the screen before. This is terribly frustrating and I thank you for your help.

    Melanie - January 22nd, 2011
  11. Recientemente he adquirido un Garmin Etrex legend, en idioma
    espaƱol, en etapa de aprendizaje accione algo incorrectamente, se cambio el idioma y no puedo volver al espaƱol,agradecerƭa vuesrta ayuda para solucionar el problema , desde ya quedo muy agradecido.

    I recently purchased a Garmin eTrex Legend, language
    Spanish, learning stage trigger something wrong, you change the language and I can not go to Spanish vuesrta appreciate help solving the problem, of course I am very grateful.

    rodolfo - January 26th, 2011
  12. how do you get tomtom to change text back to english

    elmer sheets - March 20th, 2011
  13. I have a new Garmin nuvi 3790 and it is in a language I can not understand. How do I get it to English ?

    Bonnie Rosenquist - June 6th, 2011
  14. Thanks very much for this clear information which helped me get rid of the German text on my Garmin Nuvi. This was much more helpful than the very basic startup information which was in the box when I bought the satnav.

    Patricia - July 6th, 2011
  15. I bought an Oregon 450t. And NO, I didn’t accidentally select a language I couldn’t read; it was selected for me at the factory. And there is no manual guidance for rectifying the situation. Sent an email to Garmin support. Got an auto back saying they would contact me in next thursday (this is saturday and I would like to use this contraption tomorrow).

    After a couple hours of my time and a set of batteries, I hacked through every foreign language icon and all the options under each. Here’s the deal. Click on the wrench. Then go through every option (I can’t recall which worked, but there was no second wrench icon, which Garmin suggests) and you will find one that has an option “English”, and it’s in English. Click on it and you can at least read the screen. The screens that Garmin said I would encounter up front, including one that specifies the kind of batteries I installed, simply do not exist. What a cool experience. Buy something else.

    Jim - September 10th, 2011

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