How to Unlock a Garmin Nuvi

by Julius Vandersteen
Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images

You can prevent unauthorized people from using your Garmin Nuvi by enabling the device’s Garmin Lock theft-deterrent system. Doing so can keep a thief from using your Nuvi’s GPS navigation services, and also allows you to keep others from seeing what locations you have visited, including destinations that you wish to keep confidential. Garmin gives you two ways to unlock your Nuvi: typin in a PIN code or driving to a security location that you specify when setting up Garmin Lock on your device.

Step 1

Press the “Power” button on your device.

Step 2

Type in your four-digit PIN code at the prompt. You must type this code in each time you turn on the device.

Drive to your security location if you cannot remember the four-digit PIN code. Using the GPS system, the Nuvi detects when you arrive at your security location and unlocks itself.


  • If you forget the PIN for your Garmin Nuvi and also do not remember your security location, contact Garmin support for details about sending in the device to get it unlocked (link in Resources). You will need to send in proof of purchase or product registration along with the Nuvi.


  • It's a good idea to write down your Nuvi’s four-digit code or your security location, and keep this information in a secure location.
  • When picking a security location, choose one that you drive to often, such as your workplace or home.


Photo Credits

  • Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images

About the Author

Julius Vandersteen has been a freelance writer since 1999. His work has appeared in “The Los Angeles Times,” “Wired” and “S.F. Weekly.” Vandersteen has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from San Francisco State University.

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