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Garmin Nuvi 260W


Placeholder only for the Garmin Nuvi 260w, similar to the 260 but with a widescreen.

495 Responses

  1. i have downloaded some P.O.I(point of interest) stuff for my nuvi 260w but i am failing to load into my device (even though i have download the POI loader already.the new P.O.Ii have are red light cameras and police traps…can anyone help me please.its saying that i need the gpx files but yet i only have the gpi files

    mayhem - March 1st, 2009
  2. What is the bluetooth feature on the 265WT and how does it work?

    Henry DiYanni - March 2nd, 2009
    • Bluetooth allows you to use the GPS as you would a Bluetooth headset. You can place and receive calls from the GPS when it is paired with a compatible phone.

      Tim - March 3rd, 2009
  3. Tim,
    I’m debating between the Garmin 260 and the 265wt. There’s a $100 difference in price. I’m not sure I’ll use the bluetooth since I have a Palm Pilot, and I don’t think it’s compatible. I’ve compared them on the site, and it looks like the only difference is the bluetooth, case, and lifetime traffic reports. Do you have a recommendation? I am a first time GPS user. Thanks. -Robin

    Robin - March 5th, 2009
    • I’d go for the 265WT due to the widescreen. It makes text entry much easier.

      Tim - March 5th, 2009
  4. Hello,
    I won my choice of the Garmin Nuvi 260W or $175. With $ being an issue, I am really torn. That said, I doubt I would have the money to buy a GPS with the text to speech thing (street names instead of turn in 200 feet like my hubby’s Mio). Any thoughts on which is the better choice ($ or GPS).

    Michaelle - March 5th, 2009
    • Get the 265t if you live in a metro area.
      The free traffic for life is a deal!

      Burt - March 6th, 2009
  5. I have the Garmin nuvi 260w. However, during one of my trips I somehow lost my SD card. I then purchased the Garmin Map Update 2009 from a local store. Where do I go from here? What type of SD card is compatible with my garmin as I will have to repurchase one so that I may download the 2009 Map updates. Also once I download the 2009 updates will this include all maps that were on the prior SD card?

    Sylvia - March 6th, 2009
    • The 260w comes with an SD card slot, but it doesn’t come with any card– the slot is empty and the maps are stored in the internal memory.

      Tim - March 6th, 2009
  6. Just purchased a 260W. It has a fault when announcing names. For “Street” it says “Saint” and for “Drive” it announces “Doctor”. I’ve contacted Garmin about it, they don’t seem to have a fix. Anybody else having this kind of fault. I even tried an exchange uint; same problem. Do all of the 260W’s have this? Wondering what to do.

    Dennis - March 6th, 2009
    • All Nuvi devices will do that. If you want to force a change, see this thread in our forums:
      Customize your own TTS Voice – No more ‘recalculating’

      Tim - March 6th, 2009
    • I just got a 260W and the pronunciation is sometimes off.

      e.g. No 5 Road (number five road) is said “no five road”!!
      The screen does display the correct name though.

      There are other examples.

      Paul - November 6th, 2009
  7. Would someone please tell me the difference between the Nuvi 255W and 260W? Thanks.

    Frank - March 7th, 2009
    • Frank, I’ve answered this several times in comments #41, 107, 141, 203, 246, and 376.

      Tim - March 8th, 2009
      • Tim – I’m new to this forum.
        I’m anxious to read the above comments #41,107 etc
        but do not know how to find them. This thread only seems to go up to #32. Thanks.

        Bob - April 30th, 2010
  8. Not knowing much about electronics, is it possible to overcharge my Nuvi 260W? Thanks.

    Celest - March 23rd, 2009
  9. This may be a dumb question but I can’t seem to find the answer anywhere – is the difference between the Garmin Nuvi 260 and 260w strictly the screen? The 260w has a widescreen and the 260 doesn’t – is that the only difference? Thanks:)

    Kristy - March 30th, 2009
    • Yes. The only difference is the widescreen.

      Jordan - June 1st, 2009
  10. I am having a problem with getting my 260W to find county roads. No matter how I type them in. Once I get on that county road it will show that I am on the correct road, but does not show house numbers. My friend has an older garmin and has no problems with hers. Any advice? Thanks.

    Vivian - March 30th, 2009
  11. I will be a first-time GPS buyer. I’m trying to decide between the 260W (which I hear has been discontinued) and the 255W. Any advice as to which is the best one to get? I don’t need any exaggerated features…

    Linda - April 28th, 2009
  12. Do I need a special USB cable for my Garmin 260W or will a standard A-B cable work?

    Does the battery charge through the USB cable or only during use in the car (I don’t have an AC charger)?

    Ken - May 17th, 2009
    • It is a USB to mini-USB cable. Most should work, although I have heard of cases (and experienced it myself) where a non-Garmin cable didn’t work on a particular computer, but the Garmin cable did. The battery will charge, but at twice as slow of a rate as through the car charger.

      Tim - May 18th, 2009
  13. does the nuvi 260w indicate elevation or altitude?

    mike - May 19th, 2009
    • Yes (but not well documented by Garmin). On the 260W go to the opening “where to?” screen. By holding your finger on the ‘antenna bars’ icon in the upper left for abt 5 secs, the satellite connection status screen will appear. This not only displays the current satellite lock-in status, but also the present altitude, your location coordinates and speed. Bill H

      Bill H - May 26th, 2009
      • thanks fo much for your time

        mike - May 26th, 2009
  14. Has anyone used the Garmin Nuvi 260W on a bike (bicycle)? Any feedback on how it performs for this?

    Also, is there any way to extend the battery life? I was looking for a way to get 9-18 hours on a charge due to an upcoming bike trip.

    Scott - May 26th, 2009
    • Scott, the Nuvi devices are not really designed to be used outside. A few specks of dirt inside the device or a short drop could ruin the device. Moisture can be an issue too, and the battery life you mentioned. Given the need to get a case to protect it, then some sort of mount– you might as well consider one of the GPS devices that are specifically designed for bicycles like the Garmin Edge series.

      Tim - June 1st, 2009
  15. I am using my Garmin 260W in the car and on land hunting geocaches. Can I download the caches all at once (which I do )BUT, I would like the coordinates to show also. AND have the names show instead of manually putting them all in.

    Willow - May 30th, 2009
  16. I’m about to purchase a Garmin 260W & this is my first GPS. Is the screen readable in bright sunlight? Will I be able to get to locations if I only input intersections? Will I have a choice of Route Set-Ups like fastest time or shortest distance?

    Harry - June 3rd, 2009
    • Harry – Yes to all three of those questions.

      Tim - June 5th, 2009
  17. A friend told me about an extra that can be downloaded onto a gps called ecoRoute. I have the Garmin 260w and was wondering if my gps is compatible with ecoRoute?

    Jordan - June 4th, 2009
    • Jordan, no, the ecoRoute function is not compatible with your GPS.

      Tim - June 5th, 2009
      • Oh well. Thanks for the response, Tim.

        Jordan - June 5th, 2009
  18. Has the Garmin 260w been discontinued? From what I’ve read in this site, it seems to be quite the choice. I am about to buy my first and want to make a good, BASIC choice. Thanks so much!

    Don - June 5th, 2009
    • Technically, the 260w has been discontinued, but that doesn’t really mean too much. See our discontinued status page for more info.

      Tim - June 5th, 2009
  19. Does Garmin make a model that allows the entry of Lon/Lat instead of an address? Thanks!

    Don - June 5th, 2009
    • I think every garmin model can do that.

      Tim - June 5th, 2009
  20. I’ve found the Garmin nuvi 260W and the Garmin nuvi 265WT. These both appear to be discontinued (per this site) – that suprises me with a large warehouse retailer selling so many. Which one is a better deal?

    Will - June 9th, 2009
    • Will, I’d go with the 265WT.

      Tim - June 9th, 2009
  21. I have a 260W, I purchased in late Dec./08, the 3rd Garmin I have owned. Before purchasing, I was assured this unit came with the latest 2009 maps. I live in Canada, and just traveled from Alberta to Nova Scotia and back. The maps are worse than useless. Main highways do not exist on the maps, which are misleading and inaccurate, at best. According to the unit, I needed to travel east from Kenora, Ont. to reach Winnipeg, Man. Check your map, guys! Upon contacting Garmin, their solution was to spend $100.00 + for upgrading maps. When we began our trip, this unit was only 4 months old! I don’t feel I should have to pay to “upgrade” maps on a unit I have just purchased! The graphics are poor, maps are useless in many areas, and customer service sucks! Shame on you Garmin, I used to recommend you to anyone who would listen!

    Sharon Purdy - June 23rd, 2009
  22. Sharon:

    Too bad about your experience. I just received a 200W as a gift. Yesterday I registered the unit at Garmin’s website and was led through the process to update the maps. This took over an hour with an cable/internet connection, but my unit now has the latest maps. Admittedly I haven’t been able to test it other than just in our city, but so far I am pleased (the VOICE became an irritation to my wife…). Perhaps did you fail to update the maps after registration? Just a thought.

    Don - June 23rd, 2009
    • At the time of purchase, Dec, the maps were the newest (2009 version). Garmin offers updates in April. The 2009 maps seem ok in the west, but the farther east of Winnipeg you go, the worse they are. For the benifit of your wife, you should be able to go in and change the voice, my unit offers several different options.

      Sharon - June 23rd, 2009
  23. so correct me if i’m wrong, but what i’m getting is since my nuvi260 is disc (or just about to be), then even buying a new 2009 map update, i am NOT able to upgrade because i won’t have the latest “firmware”?– (what ever that is) i’m not as computer literate as i’d like to be but i’m getting this message: “THIS GARMIN IS NOT ELLIGIBLE FOR THIS UPDATE BECAUSE A PREVIOUS MAP VERSION IS NOT INSTALLED” what previous map version is it talking about?!!! i bought this nuvi a yr ago and it came with 2008 maps. now what? i live in yuma and go to phoenix and some places are not on my gps! it’s so FRUSTRATING! do it just need to shell out for a NEW gps? HEEEEEEEELP!!!!!

    suzanne - July 5th, 2009
    • Suzanne, You can use the Garmin WebUpdater application to make sure you have the latest firmware… basically the latest version of the software your GPS uses to run. Then you can install the new map update if you have purchased it. Note that the newest map update is called “2010”.

      Tim - July 6th, 2009
  24. i seem to have the latest version of firmware. i bought my gps a little over a yr ago. a wal-mart co-worker in the electronics dept told me if my gps said 2008, a 2009 map update would be more current. is this NOT right? i thought it was a good deal @ only $30. did i just buy a duplicate map?! i can’t afford or need a 2010 just yet. . .i was just looking for something more current than what i had. i’m still getting the same “THIS GARMIN IS NOT ELLIGIBLE FOR THIS UPDATE BECAUSE A PREVIOUS MAP VERSION IS NOT INSTALLED” message. did i just blow $30?!

    suzanne - July 6th, 2009
  25. I recently purchased a Garmin 760 and am having difficulties with the unit. The unit has made several errors regarding directions, example: while in Sacramento after leaving I-5 heading east for Hwy99 it said to turn right onto I-5, but the road was Hwy99. It has also told me to go 24 miles on a street when after a couple miles I turned onto I-5. The unit seems to get confused and doesn’t know where it is. I recently updated the maps in hope that it would help but it has not. Is this operator error, or does it appear that I have a defective unit. I have not used the thing but a few times, however I do not trust the directions it provides. Thanks for any assistance.


    Ray - August 11th, 2009
  26. I am looking into buying my first GPS unit. I will be using it only in the car and I am looking at the Garmin 260W. But is there anything out now that betters it? I can get a regular (non-widescreen 260) [deleted] so ideally, I would like to spend no more than $200 for anything like the 260W. Garmin is the preferred brand. I am worried as I read this forum as it’s a hit-and-miss with this model. THX.

    John - August 14th, 2009
  27. I have a Garmin 265T GPS and I’m trying to find out what the difference is between the Simulator being on or off. The only think I can find is that when the simulator is on it extends the battery usage.

    Angie - October 6th, 2009
    • The “simulator” is very poorly named. When the simulator is turned ON, GPS reception is turned OFF. This allows you to “simulate” a drive and view the car icon driving down the road, previewing what the GPS would show if you are actually driving. If you want to use the GPS for its designed purpose– to give you live directions based on your position, then you need to keep the simulator turned OFF which keeps GPS reception turned ON.

      Tim - October 6th, 2009
  28. Hi:
    I bought the Garmin 260 a few months ago and got the issue of spoken the street names. For some reason, if the street name is 200 something, then it spoken 100 something instead while the map is still shown the correct street name. For example: turn right on 215 street as shown correct on the map, then it spoken “turn right on 115 street” instead – basically, it is spoken wrong but it asks us to turn correctly when it is close to the street 215.
    Does it anyone have the same issue as mine? How do you fix this problem? advice please.
    Oh, I use this gps to drive around the cities in WA state and figure out this issue.

    Thank you very much.

    Violet - October 19th, 2009
    • I haven’t heard of that problem before.

      Tim - October 20th, 2009
  29. I want a GPS unit to display what the speed limit is. No one else seems to care about this feature. It is very difficult to find out which units have it. Does the Garmin Nuvi 260W tell you what the speed limit is?

    Heather - November 25th, 2009
  30. I already have the Garmin Nuvi 260W and just purchased the 255WT. I downloaded the free update for the 255WT, question is would I be able to install this same map update on my 260W as well?

    Bobby - November 29th, 2009
    • No, each map is locked to the device it was issued/licensed for.

      Tim - November 29th, 2009
  31. Where is Canada on this 260w?
    I just updated the map in the device last night. It took almost 2hours. But I still do not see Canada option. I live in NJ, the only option I see was NJ and other states. Say I’d like to drive from NJ to somewhere in Toronto? How do I set that up?? Help, I AM leaving for Canada on Monday. Thought by updating the map I’ll be fine. Great, support does not work on weekends! Thank you very much!


    kathryn - December 5th, 2009
    • Not to worry, Kathryn. Those Canadian maps are already part of your unit’s existing ‘North American’ maps. Just punch in your Canadian destination/address and it’ll automatically route you there just fine (even from NJ!). Bill H

      Bill - December 5th, 2009
  32. Hey guys, A couple of quick questions about the 255w. Does it have the feature that detects traffic cameras? Also just to make sure, the 255w has the feature to read traffic but only if it has a special reciever for it right? FM traffic only works in certain states that has that function in there fm stations right?

    Keith - January 2nd, 2010
  33. What is the diffrence between Nuvi 260W and 265W

    Meghana - May 3rd, 2010
  34. i have garmin 260w l Lock my gps but i forgot the password any help thanks.

    Aman - July 1st, 2010
    • The Garmin must be turned on at the precise “home” gps coordinates you used when you set up the password or the device must be returned to Garmin where they will reset it.

      David - November 28th, 2010
  35. I’ve had my Garmin Nuvi 260w for over 18 months and it worked fine. Suddenly. a couple months ago it stopped announcing street names and now ONLY ANNOUNCES LEFT or RIGHT instructions. I downloaded ‘update software’ from an online source and the Nuvi accepted it as successful. but it has not restored the announcement of street-names feature which I prefer. Any suggestions?

    Richard - July 19th, 2010
  36. Is there a way to update the preloaded POI data or does the POI data get updated with a map upgrade for my 260W?

    David - July 26th, 2010
    • POI data gets updated with the map updates.

      Tim - July 26th, 2010
  37. I love Garmin products, but their support is just unacceptable!

    I wrote them and got the same response over and over again.
    I kept telling them I’m trying to connect my Nuvi to the computer and its not recognized:
    tried different cables, including original cable, connected directly to the USB port, tried different ports, hell – I even tried different computers.

    After writing them all that they just kept telling me to try with different cables or with different computers. for that kind of support – no need for representatives – you can do that on the FAQ section!

    with all due respect to their products – I learned my lesson – I will not buy Garmin anymore…

    Nir - August 24th, 2010
  38. I agree that the Garmin email support has been useless. However, the phone support has always been excellent. I’ve had Garmin products for abt 4 yrs and have never had a bad session with phone tech support. They’re worth the wait…period
    1888 442 7646, 9am -5pm CST

    bill hart - August 27th, 2010
  39. Note to all. Garmin has issued a recall on some Nuvis. From Garmin:
    The recalled devices include a small subset of the following nüvi model numbers:
    • nüvi 200W, 250W, and 260W
    • nüvi 7xx and 7xxT (where xx is a two-digit number)

    Determine your nüvi model and serial number by looking at the label on the back or bottom of your nüvi. You must provide this and other information to determine whether your nüvi is affected by this recall.

    To easily and quickly determine whether your nüvi is affected, go to http://www.garmin.com/nuvibatterypcbrecall

    Bill H

    Bill Hart - September 3rd, 2010
  40. Are there any aftermarket add on to get real time traffic on the 260W?


    Steve - September 9th, 2010
  41. My Nuvi 260W was not one of those in the battery recall, However the battery appears to have failed (it was left in the car overnight plugged into the cars cigarette lighter the same as we always have iy when travelling. I suspect we didnt turn it off though). Is there any solution other than a new battery? We live near Toronto Canada and I can buy one online but I cant see any way to get at the old one to replace it.
    Thanks, Gord

    Gord - September 27th, 2010
  42. My nuvi 260W has stopped working. I noticed that the slot for the chip is empty. Maybe it fell out. Is this the reason why I cannot turn it on?

    MARC - October 24th, 2010
    • No, the 260w comes with an SD card slot– but no chip is necessary. The slot is there for expansion purposes only.

      Tim - October 25th, 2010
  43. Hi,
    I am about to purchase a Garmin GPS product for a gift. I use a built in navigation system so have no idea what to purchase. She will use this for US roads only, is not terribly technically savvy and I want to spend middle of the road.
    Thanks for any advice…

    Molly - November 28th, 2010
    • I have enjoyed my Garmin Nuvi 260W very much and have had no support problems or device problems. Power consumption is reasonable. I would not buy a gps without at least a 4.3? screen. I also like the spoken street names though the Garmin has a persistant problem noted in this website of speaking “doctor” for “Dr.” streetnames. Reception in parking structures is poor but that is probably true with most gps. I recommend buying a dashtop mount too since window mounts are illegal in some states.

      David - November 28th, 2010
  44. I have enjoyed my Garmin Nuvi 260W very much and have had no support problems or device problems. Power consumption is reasonable. I would not buy a gps without at least a 4.3″ screen. I also like the spoken street names though the Garmin has a persistant problem noted in this website of speaking “doctor” for “Dr.” streetnames. Reception in parking structures is poor but that is probably true with most gps. I recommend buying a dashtop mount too since window mounts are illegal in some states.

    David - November 28th, 2010
  45. There have been a lot of changes to major routes in an area where I travel, and I”d like to get updated maps. My son downloaded new maps for me, but they don’t have the updates. I called Garmin to see when the updated maps might be available; the support person said up to a year later. He has no way of knowing whether what he is seeing is updated from what I get when I drive through this area.

    Doesn’t it seem there should be someway the tech support people can tell when the map for a specific area was last updated? I don’t want to spend money to update only to find I still have the same maps as before.

    Linda - November 28th, 2010
  46. I looked at the 265 model. I can’t find the info. Is it possible to add multiple addresses for multiple destinations? Also, do I have to input them manually or can I download them from my computer or a SMART CARD?

    Great Site!!

    Mike - March 30th, 2011

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