Self-Serving Blog Post – Updating Car Navigation Maps

The original reason I decided to start blogging was to document my knitting projects.  This blog was to create a documented history of projects.  Today I go back to that concept when I document how to update my car navigation maps.

Critical Steps to Updating Car Navigation Maps

I own a 2016 Honda Accord with built in GPS.  Twice since I’ve owned the car, I’ve had to go through the process of updating the car navigation system. And both time it’s been a nightmare process.  So, in the unlikely event that you have to update the Garmin GPS navigation system in your Honda, here are the important steps:


Proper USB Stick:

  1. Get a USB stick with at least 8GB capacity. My car doesn’t have an SD slot, only a USB port.  Garmin requires at least 8GB for updates (even if it doesn’t need it).
  2. Make sure the USB stick is formatted as MS DOS FAT32 (not exFAT, not MAC OS…my car will not accept anything but DOS FAT formatting – ask me how I know)
    1. If you need to reformat (or check the formatting) of your USB stick, google it…it varies for each computer, but for a MAC, it’s under Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility.  You need to use the Erase function to get to the dropdown options for formatting the USB stick…I choose MS DOS (FAT)

Getting Information From your Car:

  1. Bring the properly formatted USB stick and your car keys out to your car.
  2. Insert the properly formatted USB stick into your USB port in your car (mine is in the little cupboard below my display).
  3. Start the car (or turn on the ignition by pressing start button without pressing the brake <twice>.
  4. Go to Navigation on your car’s display.
  5. Select the Menu > (scroll down to ) Settings > (scroll down to) Devices
  6. Select Update – you should get a message rather quickly that your car’s navigation profile has been written to your storage device.
  7. Remove the USB stick and turn off the ignition

Downloading Update From Your Computer:

  1. Bring the USB stick to your computer and insert it.
  2. You may have already installed Garmin Express on your computer, launch the application.  If you haven’t, launch a web browser and go to and select your car’s year and model and download Garmin Express and install it on your computer.
  3. Your “device” may be listed (Honda Garmin Navigation), click on it.  If not, add the device.
  4. Go through the download of the update.

Loading Update Into Your Car:

  1. Bring the USB stick back out to your car, insert the USB stick.
  2. Start the car (or turn on the ignition)
  3. Go back to Settings > Devices for the Navigation system on your car’s display and select the Update Maps option
  4. This update process took my car about 16 minutes to install
  5. Once completed, remove USB stick and re-start car/ignition and launch navigation.  Maps will reload and you should be good to go.


Yes, the process is ridiculous.  Why can it just use my iPhone connection to download and install the update?  Or even better, my home’s WiFi?

Hopefully the next time I need to do an update, it will be a lot easier with this “to-do list.”

Other Technical Tips

Recently I replaced my MacBook Pro with an iMac.  I LOVE the new desktop and it works fantastically well.  Much better and faster than my old laptop.

Two things I miss about the laptop:

  1. There is no CD/DVD drive installed in my iMac
  2. I can’t bring it to Easton Mountain for the retreats.  This prevents me from blogging (easily) and processing photos from my Canon digital SLR

To solve the first problem, I recently took a gamble.  I purchased a CD/DVD USB external drive for under $10 (including shipping!) from one of those direct-from-China companies.

I wasn’t sure if this would be compatible with my iMac. It arrived in a few weeks after ordering, and I just plugged it in (it required two USB ports, one for power and the other for data transfer) and it worked like a charm!  Now I can convert my music CD’s to iPhone compatible songs I can add to my library (again).

For the second problem, I haven’t come up with a solution.  I could easily get an SD/Card reader that would transfer photos to my Galaxy Tablet or possibly my iPhone.

And I could use my tablet to to write/edit blog entries.  But fortunately, I don’t have to worry about that until May.

Current Knitting

Given copyright issues, I won’t be selling the Baby Surprise Jackets at my craft show.  I don’t know what I was thinking and I’m grateful a reader reminded me.

I’ve decided to focus on a new wrap using the Cascade Casablanca yarn.

Cross Hatch Shawl 10-16-19 01

I’m using the Cross Hatch Scarf pattern I published a while ago, but I’m tripling the width (and the amount of yarn).  Obviously, the striping is more narrow, but I’m liking it a lot so far.

Readers’ Comments/Questions

Jenny asks:

So . . . are you ever going to tell us what the answer is to the Quiz on your October 2nd post?

I had so little response to that blog entry (including not ONE guess about what it was), that I figured no one cared.  So, thank you for asking!

QueerJoe Quiz - mystery booklet

This little paper-bound booklet is what every est graduate received upon completing the est Training.  It’s a small book of aphorisms called “If God Had Meant Man to Fly, He Would Have Given Him Wings” or “Up to Your Ass in Aphorisms” and it has my favorite aphorism:

If God told you exactly what it was you were to do, you would be happy doing it no matter what it was.

What you’re doing is what God wants you to do.

Be happy.

By the way, I saw this booklet listed for a short period on eBay for $150.  It didn’t sell.

4 comments on “Self-Serving Blog Post – Updating Car Navigation Maps

  1. I would double check the copyright laws – my understanding of US copyright is that the copyright in on the pattern not on what you make from it – the Baby Surprise was copyrighted in the US so there should be no confusion. Copyright in the US works like cook books – if you make cookies from a copyrighted recipe you can sell them.

    In other countries the law works differently.

    You will not get into trouble selling your Baby Surprise Jackets due to copyright infringement. I suspect if you had 16 people knitting the jackets and had not bought a pattern for each to follow you would have problems because then you are copying/distributing the pattern without paying for each copy.

    I hope your sale goes well.

    1. Thanks Beth. I understand US copyright and fair use laws in the same way you do. But the laws aren’t very clear and some copyright owners have a different view. I don’t plan on being the legal case for clarifying these laws.

  2. Hello Joe
    Schoolhouse Press has undoubtedly dealt with this situation before. Asking might help clarify and then you’d know for sure. They might give permission.

    1. You’re right, they have dealt with this before and folks have posted publicly the response. There was even one case where someone wanted to auction off one of the garments and donate the proceeds to charity and the request was denied.

      That’s why I should really have known better about this.

      Fortunately, this isn’t my livelihood.

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