DO NOT use Garmin Vector 3 pedals with Zwift!

I am writing this in hopes of saving others the grief that I have experienced.

In short, since starting with Zwift I have used a combination of a spin bike fitted with the Garmin power meter pedals. I’ve had two major issues that I can’t seem to resolve. The most annoying of the two is drop-outs. Imagine you are in a group ride or race and your signal (hence power/watts) drops out from anywhere between 1 to 10 seconds. Goodbye peloton! You’ve just been dropped.

The reasons for the drop-out seem to be various. First, Garmin offers a fix, that I found helpful, which is to clean the battery contacts, which can become dirty. This may help to some degree. The other reason for drop-outs seems to be signal interference, which I am not able to solve regardless of what I do.

The second of the two issues is a delay of anywhere between a few to 30 seconds. So for example, you get out of your saddle and start pedaling hard and only many seconds later your watts react and increase (not good if you’re trying to sprint to the finish). Or, you stop pedaling, but your avatar goes on pedaling for the next 20 seconds…

With nicer weather coming I will move the pedals to my outdoor road bike where drop-outs for a few seconds is not a big deal. I will also cancel Zwift until I can find an alternative set-up that won’t give me such a hard time.

You might try RGT but many people also experience BT dropouts there as well for various and often mysterious reasons. My personal feeling is that it is related to how robust the BT communication protocol is on your trainer/pedals and the online app. Some platforms seem to recover better, some protocols seem to me more robust than others. Anyway, a few thoughts.

Are you using Bluetooth or ANT+? I had the same problem when I was using the Vectors on Zwift paired with BLE. Switching to ANT+ made them much more stable. I had to use an ANT+ dongle with and extension cable putting the dongle underneath the bottom bracket. After that it was pretty rock solid.

Also make sure you have the battery box upgrade and the latest firmware.

Thanks Mark. I did just order the batter cover. Garmin did not inform me of the battery cover as they did others. I had to chase them. On the ANT+, I’m running through AppleTV 4K. I’m pretty sure I can’t plugin a dongle, but I will check again.

I used to have a pair of Vector 3. They kept randomly dropping, much as you describe.

Got fed-up baby-sitting them, applying baby oil (sorry: mineral oil) to the battery, eventually returning them.

I will have the Vector 4 (or 5?) once they move to integral rechargeable battery - but not the 3.

ATV4k is BT only with no USB port.