So, I finally bit the bullet and bought a new Elemnt Bolt a few weeks ago. I had a v1 of it and never had a problem with it, only replaced the original one as it wasn’t holding charge as well as it used to.
A few uses with the new one and I’ve noticed it’s definitely lacking in accuracy when reading temperature. Not a little out but often significantly out. We’re talking around 10°C out. I had one ride where it was 18 - 20°C but the Bolt was telling me it was 30 - 33°C. But on the whole, it’s out by about about 5 - 10°C regularly.
Should I be worried about this? Is there an easy way to re-calibrate the unit so it’s a bit more accurate?
My biggest concern that while this is an easy-to-ignore issue, it could be an indication of something more significant being wrong with my not-even-a-month-old bike computer.
Obviously from your post, temperature is an important metric for you - not one I care about or have set on my Bolt (V2).
Have you checked DC Rainmaker’s review and the comments following - that might have some insight.
Some of the early shipments seemed to have a few issues, elevation accuracy was a fairly constant grizzle. Mine has been pretty good, it has dropped speed/distance on occasion, but that seems to be a power meter issue. Nothing a correct distance/elevation later on Strava can’t fix.
Can’t say I’ve noticed a difference in temperature reading from v.1 to v.2 as to be honest it’s not a metric that I look at.
However, I find my Bolt v.2 is a lot slower at autopausing than my Bolt v.1 ever was. Also it’s generally slower at noticing changes in speed.
As with others, temp is a metric that I pay zero attention to on my computers. First and foremost, it ahs no bearing on my ride once i’m out and secondly because I have never found any temp on a bike computer to be accurate…way too many variables seem to impact it.
That said, if your unit is as far off as you indicate, I would just reach out to Wahoo. if it is indeed only a few months old, seems like it should be an easy candidate for warranty.
I can’t speak to Wahoo, but my Garmin is consistently off on temperature. It tends to run low, so here in Minnesota I occasionally look at it in the winter, just to remind myself how hard I am. :- ) Otherwise it is useless.
Just email them and they’ll send you a new one. That being said test in your house with known temperature out of direct sunlight to see if the sensor is actually off (sunlight has a big impact it regularly shows 120°+when temps are 105° here).
They sent me a new unit free of charge after I emailed them to tell them I ran my Bolt through the washing machine and the altimeter was broken (seeing if I could order a new part) but of course eco friendly cycling industry everything these days is potted in and even if it wasn’t most people that take up cycling can’t even change the oil in their cars so forget about soldering irons.
These things probably cost $2 to make; plenty of fat on the bone for Wahoo and no sense keeping a broken tool you paid full price for.
Yeah, that isn’t even close to being accurate.
I pity all the fools who ride with all this ‘data’.
They have the best customer service in the business.
Wahoo does have great service, so it it’s an issue, I’d definitely email them.
That said, in the US (maybe it’s a meterologic standard, so elsewhere too), temperature is taken in the shade, so if your device is in the sun, it will read a good deal higher than the stated temperature on your phone or the news.
Thanks for the replies. It’s not a metric I particularly care about but I’m more concerned by it being so far out and I was wondering if it’s an indication that there’s something seriously wrong with it.
Wahoo are pretty good. I got in touch after my almost year-old Tickr started giving me really random reads (like my heart was beating at 190bpm when I’d only just gotten on my bike and then telling me it was at 75 while riding up a hill). They sent me a brand new one, no questions asked.
I’ve had both Bolts,and both had bad temp readings. I think the sun hits it, or not, and it really throws the reading off. Never even close to accurate, so I just don’t use that function.
I can’t say that I care about the temperature that the device reads. Mainly because it is difficult to measure it properly. The temperature sensor is always (on every unit I have seen the insides of) on the same circuit board as all of the other electronics. Sometimes manufacturers have even used a sensor that is built into a chip that also does something else. So, you end up with a sensor in the vicinity of warm electronics that results in a reading higher than the real ambient temperature. Manufacturers can try to correct that in software by subtracting an offset but that assumes that the temperature reading is not affected by your speed, etc… Therefore, if they wanted an accurate reading they would need to take pains to ensure that the temp sensor was well exposed to the ambient air and isolated from the internal heating of the device. This is more work, and probably cost, than most manufacturers are willing to invest.
Fundamentally, temperature in a semiconductor chip such as those used in bike computer can be calculated based on the current flow in a diode at a known voltage since absolute temperature (in degrees K) is a term in the exponent of the diode characteristic curve. While actual implementation is more complex, this is what allows microprocessors such as those in your desktop/laptop/phone to provide a temperate reading for performance monitoring/benchmarking. These circuits are typical integrated in the microcontroller “brains” of device. This is of course affected by heat generated by other functions in the system but I would think the meager computational demands of a bike computer would not raise the device temperature significantly. The other big factor is the ambient environment (air temp, solar load) and I suspect (with no specific data to support my view) that is the dominate factor in skewing readings. I know my Garmins give crazy readings in the hot Texas summer sun. I have no explanation for why one device would read dramatically different than another of the same model other than firmware differences or possible variation in construction that would allow heat to dissipate differently.
The temp displayed on all bike computers is the temperature inside the case.
This is affected by the computer being in direct sun and when the battery is charging.
I often see my Wahoo report 15F over the temp shown on the bank signs. Usually only when the air temp is over 80F and a cloudless day.
Was even worse on a Lezene with a smaller case.
When I charge my Wahoo from my dyno hub it shows about 10F over air temperature even on winter days.
The only bike GPS I’ve ever owned that consistently produced an accurate temperature reading has been the Karoo 2. Multiple Garmin’s and Wahoo’s were all severely inaccurate, the original Karoo was a bit better but still consistently a few degrees off. It’s not a feature I really rely upon often but the K2’s accuracy in that regard has been a pleasant surprise. I definitely wouldn’t consider the inaccuracy to be a sign of a larger issue, it just seems to be a common problem of the form factor with limited exceptions to that rule.
“A few degrees “ is rarely off. Just normal variation. My front and back yards are commonly +/- 5F
I have had exactly the same problem with the new Bolt. The V1 was fine, the v2 is at least 8c off.
This is certainly a problem, as I live in Mallorca, showing 24c when in fact it’s 32c is unacceptable. Wahoo is happy to change it for a new one. let’s hope it works!