Battery for my Runner 3
edited January 24
Hi, anyone know where to buy a new battery for my runner3
Look on eBay Amazon and other third party sites. TT does not sell them and does not support battery replacement. You first need to open up the watch (for which you will need to buy special tools) to find out specifically which battery you have as they vary between and even within models. You would be better off just getting a new watch, there are plenty of brands out there with better feature sets for less money these days (TT Sports went out of business almost 3 years ago).
Thanks for all your great replies in past years, tfarabaugh!
Replacing the Runner 3 battery is fairly straightforward.
Buy a new 280mAh runner 3 battery from ebay or aliexpress for typically under $10. Amazon will be in the $15-20 range but delivers faster.
Check the procedure on ifixit:
The first time it shouldn't take more than half an hour. Make sure you properly close the watch to avoid moisture problems, especially if you use it for swimming (like I do).
My experience with the Runner 3 has been excellent for running, biking, walking and swimming. Since this watch section of Tomtom is out of business you can get a used one for a low price. I bought multiple watches so now my whole family is using them. I always keep a spare battery in case one of them dies.
Buying a new watch takes considerably more time than ordering a spare battery and replacing the old one.
edited November 2020
To give you a view on what it takes: I just used this
battery to replace my Runner 3 original one.
Cost: 9 euros, delivery 3 weeks. Battery says it has 1500mAh. That’s probably enthusiastic.
In past year the battery life dropped from 8 or 9 hours down to 2 (GPS). I use the watch for up to 10 sports activities per week. That's about 16 hours a week in GPS mode and charging needs to be daily.
Opening the watch is easy, see above for Ifixit info. Not shown on Ifixit is that the Runner 3 has only six identical Torx screws, not eight. It also has additional flat cable wiring into the back panel. I left the vibrator in place and carefully pried the battery out. That took only 10 seconds or so.
Now that the (original) battery was out I saw that it was bulging, so definitely needed replacement. Glad it did not yet come to a internal battery short circuit. That could have torched the inside of the watch … and my wrist. It also was clear that a factory reset could never have fixed this problem.
I could not see an easy way to unplug the battery (I probably should have lifted it upwards but wasn't sure. Anyone any suggestion? ), so to avoid damage to the inside I cut the wires near the old battery and did the same near the connector of the new one. Soldering took only few minutes. I used tape to stick the wires to the battery. Altogether it had a better fit than the old bulging battery so it was easy to close the watch.
Will take few runs/bike trips to check durability but charging already looks much better that the old battery. The info shows a full battery rather than the 2/3 that it used to be..
edited November 2020
Update on above:
The new battery lifetime appears to be in the 10+ hours.
I replaced another battery today. This took less than 20 minutes.
Before opening the watch make sure you clean the outside to avoid that dirt might block the sealing when you close it. I've done lots of salt water swimming with this watch, but it is still waterproof.
Remember to keep the two halves together and avoid pressure on the flat cable that connects these parts. It is fairly robust but it's better to be safe than sorry.
This time I wanted to remove the battery together with its connector. I first made sure that the connector of the new battery was identical to the old one. I've read that they're not always the same. If they're different its better to use the soldering option I mentioned above. An advantage of the soldering option is that you stay away from the metal connector leads and short circuit risks.
Here's a picture of the soldering approach that I used in my earlier comment. I used two heat shrink solder sleeves to cover the connections.
After some study of the old and new battery connectors I noticed that the connector has two thin slots on the back side that fit over two small metal strips in the watch. Here's a bottom-side view of the (old) connector.
I removed the battery connector by first lifting it slightly on the cable side to get about 1 mm of grip space for a (plastic) tool and then lifting it upwards. No backwards/forwards sliding or pressure is needed.
The new connector is installed by pushing it vertically onto the metal strips.
Once it is in place, make sure that the connector leads do not get stuck when you close the watch. Otherwise it will no longer be water proof.
I used for this replacement was about 10 cents less expensive than the one above. Unlike the earlier one it had no print on front/back so it wasn't clear if it was intended for the Runner 3.
It does seem to do it's job, but next time I'll order the one above.
Good luck and cheers
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