A question from Jim: I purchased an Apple Watch 5 and the heart rate monitor is totally out of accuracy. I purchased it for the heart function of the watch as I have a very low resting heart rate. So, when I’m sat, my heart rate is 50bpm and the watch is saying 92bpm. Does anyone know if this is a software issue or do I have a faulty watch? Thanks in advance.
How accurate is Apple Watch heart rate?
Let’s be honest: the heart rate monitor on your Apple Watch sucks. That’s probably why you’re here anyway. People with heart conditions such as Arrhythmia need to keep track of their heart rate. It is even more crucial to have a device that can accurately record these data.
Emma Truscott asked a question
I don’t feel it’s always accurate. There’s times I’m sitting at my desk and it says 42, and i know for sure it is not. Other times, it’ll randomly say. 185.. And I’d feel it if my heart was beating that fast.
I have heart issues (I take meds for my heart rate which is “normally” around 130+ without drugs). Apple Watch has been spot on with catching the breakthrough episodes I’ve been having + has even gone as far as logging a “workout session” during one episode. Luckily my cardio believes Apples data + increased meds + added more.
I can confirm it matches medical equipment as I am currently in hospital hooked up to monitors and the watch matches every change.
With reports of inaccuracy, missing data, and failure to monitor heart rate at a certain time, many users are on the verge of returning their Apple Watch.
Before you do that, though, it doesn’t hurt to follow a few simple tricks below to get the heart rate monitor on the Apple Watch to work again or at least a bit better than before. I hope these fixes will help.
How to Fix Incorrect Heart Rate Readings
Make sure you’re not wearing your Apple Watch too loosely. This can affect the sensor in the back of the watch. Before a workout, check the band and tighten it. When the exercise is over, you can lose it up a bit. In addition to tightening your Apple Watch, you should also clean the sensor so that it can give a better result.
Morgan Williams asked a question
Watch needs to be snug, as in no light being able to get between your skin and the back of the watch. Also make sure you’re wearing it properly on top of the wrist as that’s where the sensors are designed for…capillary perfusion is different on underside of wrist for example. Tattoos can affect accuracy, as can scabs, scars, or dead skin. Try other arm, if need be. Some people’s skin has properties that prevent light from reflecting back properly and simply can’t wear wrist based trackers, though that’s rare.
Depending on how loose you’re wearing your watch on your wrist, can cause false readings; the snugger the better.
I have had the same problem as well. Every few days I would get a high reading. I cleaned the sensor and so far so good.
Apple Watch Misleading Low Heart Rate Warnings
With a heart rate all over the map did tour cardiologist suggest a loop recorder. It’s a medical device. Frankly if I’m sleeping I’m sleeping and only rely on heart rate for workouts.
I also have the 4 and USED to have problems with low readings. 3 things cured it: the new watchOS 6, a tighter fit ALL THE TIME in my wrist and ZERO LOTION or any other product around the wrist. I have not had a low reading since.
I know you’re saying you’re disappointed, but wasn’t it the watch that alerted you to seek assistance – isn’t that a good thing? I think we shouldn’t put too much reliance on these things, they are more than a watch but aren’t medical devises. I’m pleased you’re ok and getting treatment.
There is nothing with a low resting heart rate in the morning, in fact it means that it is efficient.
Best time to take it is in the morning when you first wake up so there aren’t any contributing factors such as caffeine.
To be honest it doesn’t look like there are any spikes or that it’s beating out of time.
If you feel dizzy then I’d ring the doctor though.
Ok so I’m waiting to hear back from Apple but so far they seem stumped. I don’t get alerts on low heart rate. According to my data my heart dropped to 41-45 bmp for 30 mins and no alerts. I have my alerts set to tell me anything below 50 bmp but this says no apps allowed to read data. I have unpaired my watch twice. Turned it off and no more times I can count. Does anyone else have this?
Apple Watch Stops Tracking Heart Rate While Exercising
Frederik Bonnichsen asked a question
That happens to me, I have series2, been happening for a long time now, watch band is on tight too… never figured out what causes it! Doesn’t really seem to matter.
Yes, and I’ve tried everything and it’s happened on every Stainless Steel series from the original to the S5 (I upgrade each release). I’d love to find a second *wrist* device that I could use to show my pulse when running. It’s the worst thing about the Apple Watch, by far.
Oddly, there was a version of watchOS a couple of years ago that fixed this, but a later update reverted back to the inability to consistently read while running. My guess is that it wasn’t as accurate as they’d like, so they’d rather blank it out. Which is frustrating because it doesn’t have to be 100% accurate, just in the ballpark (which it was).
By trying everything, I mean: up and down my arm; loose, tight and in between; on in the inside of my wrist; on my other wrist; and even shaving the spot on my arm. Nothing made a difference. I know there are chest straps, but I really don’t want to use one of those.
I had that happen only when wearing a sport or Nike sport band. I had read that wearing the watch higher up your arm would give a better reading. So, I have switched to sport loops and snug the band further up that I normally wear it and have not had the no readings. Just my experience.
Does or has anyone else had issues with heart rate readings only when in workout?? My sensors are clean, my watch is snug, software is up dated and heart monitor works just fine throughout the day but for some reason will stop registering your heart rate during workouts… more so if my heart rate goes over 140bpm… first photo was when it was working pretty good and now it’s gotten worse it won’t even give me a heart rate graph on my activities anymore because it’s not reading enough.
My Apple Watch series 4 was working fine until I updated the software to OS 7.0, my iPhone 11 has also been updated to iOS 14.0
Now I find my exercise tracking is only showing a timer and no heart rate or calories. I have also tried the heart rate monitor and it does not work either.
I’ve checked and my Privacy settings show Heart Rate and Fitness Tracking enabled. Everything was working fine before the software updates.
Activity App Not Recording Heart Rate Data
Adam Melton asked a question
You can expect to have this problem where the Activity app will not record your heart rate AT ALL. Sure, the Apple Watch still measure your current heart rate, but when you tap “Done” the app doesn’t log it.
If the heart rate is not being recorded on your Apple Watch:
- On your iPhone, open the Watch app,
- Go to My Watch > Privacy,
- Enable Heart Rate and Fitness Tracking.
Also, turn off Power Saving Mode from the Workout setting page.
Apple Watch Heart Rate Sensor Not Working
If the Apple Watch does not measure your heart rate due to issues with the sensor, there are a few things you need to do.
- Check to see if the green LED light on the sensor is visible.
- Are you wearing your Apple Watch tight enough?
- Turn on Wrist Detection from the Settings page.
- Are there anything on your wrist that could affect the performance of your Apple Watch’s sensor?
The watch may display unreliable data, but then we have a severe problem if it shows nothing at all. Get in touch with Apple if you believe this is a hardware issue.