The Dexcom G6 and now the G7 is undoubtedly one of the most useful gadgets for monitoring glucose levels. Like any other modern piece of technology, it also has a few shortcomings that can come up when something goes wrong, which we call common Dexcom errors.
While there are plenty of things that can go wrong, there are only about five issues that often come up.
That is why we decided to list only those for now, and if you need help with anything else, please let us know in the comments section below.
With that out of the way, let us get right into it!
- 1 1: Dexcom G6 or G7 app false low alarm bug
- 2 2: No readings
- 3 3: Signal strength and connectivity issues
- 4 4: Dexcom G6 or G7 app not working
- 5 5: Sensor error
- 6 Signal Loss and Connection Errors on Dexcom
- 7 Is Dexcom App not working with a smartwatch?
- 8 Bonus Dexcom tips and tricks
- 9 Common Dexcom errors: wrapping up
- Top 11 tips and tricks for Dexcom G7 users using an iPhone and Apple Watch
- Where should you insert & attach the Dexcom G6 CGM Sensor to your body?
- Best companion apps for Dexcom CGMS users
- The Best Diabetes management apps for your iPhone and Apple Watch this year
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1: Dexcom G6 or G7 app false low alarm bug
The Dexcom G6 or G7 mobile app shows you the real-time data being collected by your sensor, and it should automatically alert you in case your glucose levels fall unacceptably low. However, there are plenty of reasons why it can also throw a false alarm.
More often than not, this seems to happen when the user is asleep.
So, we can safely assume that it’s a compression issue where you’re pushing down on the device and pushing it onto a muscle.
So, the easiest fix is to not lay on it if you can. At this time, there isn’t a sleep mode for Dexcom devices.
If not, you could also turn off the alarms for the night by disabling Bluetooth, muting your phone with headphones, or doing anything that’s going to mute the alarm for the night.
Another common reason why this happens is due to medication. Certain meds can mess with intestinal fluids and create both false lows and false highs.
So, pay attention to when the false alarm comes up and when you’re taking your meds. In that sense, it’s not even a false alarm. But, ask a professional if you can – to be safe.
Working out or dehydration can also temporarily affect your glucose levels – mainly when the Dexcom is too close to an area where more glucose is burned. That’s normal.
It can also happen due to a bad fit, calibration, insertion, or a wrong setup.
In this case, all you can do is re-install it and ensure everything was set up correctly.
Last but not least, there’s always a small chance that you either got a defective unit or that it got damaged somewhere along the way.
If it comes down to that, all you can do is contact tech support.
2: No readings
Not getting any readings for quite some time is one of the most common Dexcom errors. If you don’t get anything for at least 20 minutes, there is a good chance of something wrong with the setup or a technical issue.
More often than not, this happens due to either long distances or objects that block the signal.
See, Bluetooth isn’t the best when it comes to range. You generally can’t get too far away from your smartphone, smartwatch, or any other device that connects to the Dexcom without losing the signal.
So, if that’s what is going on, wait until your device reconnects to Dexcom or force disable and enable Bluetooth to reconnect manually.
One more common reason that creates this issue is water. It can sometimes happen when you are taking a shower or going for a swim.
This can also happen during sleep if you are lying on the device and putting pressure on it.
So, generally, ensure you’re not too far away from your device, and there’s no water involved – and also try not to lay on the Dexcom while sleeping.
Check out the adhesive patch that you are using with your Dexcom G6 and G7 sensors. You can also purchase some good Dexcom patches that are sweat and water-resistant. Many users recommend the brand Skin Grip.
Worst case scenario, try setting up everything from scratch and remember that re-connection and sync can take as long as 3 hours.
If nothing works, call 1-844-607-8398 (Dexcom’s tech support) and see if they can do anything about it. There is always a chance that it’s a technical defect.
3: Signal strength and connectivity issues
Unfortunately, many users have problems with the sensor only lasting a week vs the advertised 10 days before it starts losing connection, giving wrong or inconsistent readings, or malfunctioning.
As a reminder, Dexcom uses Bluetooth to connect with your device. In case you’re unfamiliar, Bluetooth is a wireless technology that works in close-range proximity.
And “close-range” is the keyword here cause one of the most common Dexcom errors is signal loss due to long-range connectivity.
A Dexcom G7 or G6, or any other Bluetooth device, can only stay connected up to a certain range and withstand many objects before losing the signal.
So, more often than not, the Dexcom signal loss issue is nothing more than you being too far from your phone/watch or having too many objects like furniture, walls, or anything like that.
You’ll often see a “temporary sensor error” due to signal loss when you are too far away from your paired phone. However, once you are back in proximity, it should pick up your signal pretty quickly.
If you’re near your device and still lose the signal, it could be due to water after a bath or a dip into the sea.
Sometimes, laying on top of the sensor while sleeping can also create this issue. But, more often than not, you’ll get a false low reading.
Some common fixes include:
- Turning the Bluetooth off and on.
- Restarting your device.
- And update your Dexcom app to run the latest version.
- Try placing your Dexcom on the area of your body that has the most fat.
Finally, if nothing works, there is a slight chance that you’re dealing with a technical issue.
In this case, we’d highly recommend communicating with Dexcom tech support at 1-844-607-8398.
4: Dexcom G6 or G7 app not working
One of the most common Dexcom errors isn’t even on Dexcom but on its app. Sometimes it may stop sending notifications or refuse to connect even when there is nothing wrong with Dexcom.
Make sure of the following:
- That you allowed the Dexcom app to run and refresh in the background.
- On iPhones, go to Settings > Dexcom and make sure Background App Refresh is on.
- On Android, go to Settings > Apps > Dexcom > Mobile data & Wi-Fi and make sure Background data is turned on.
- Verify that you allowed the Dexcom app access to your location data–choose Always allow.
- Check that your Dexcom G6 or G7 shows up as a connected device in your phone’s Bluetooth settings.
- Your phone (or other devices) isn’t in low-power mode or battery-saver mode.
- You updated the app to its latest version.
- For Android users, make sure that you have not restricted the Dexcom app’s battery usage. To check open, Settings > Apps > Dexcom > App battery usage and select Unrestricted.
Remember that your Dexcom sensor can only connect with one device at a time.
So if you use multiple devices, like a phone and a tablet, or you get a new phone, make sure only one device connects to the sensor via Bluetooth. On all other devices, open its Bluetooth settings, select your Dexcom sensor, and choose to Forget that device.
If all the above is true, try closing the Dexcom app and then restarting your phone or device. If problems persist, let’s reinstall the app (for Apple) or clear the app cache and storage (for Android.)
To do that on Apple devices, follow these steps:
- Open Settings > General > Storage.
- Scroll down and locate the Dexcom app.
- Choose to Delete app.
- Re-install the app via the App Store.
To do that on Android, follow these step:
- Open the Settings app > Apps & notifications. Choose to see all apps.
- Select the Dexcom app > Storage & cache.
- First, tap Clear cache. Then open the app and see if it’s now working.
- If it still doesn’t work, go back to the app settings and select Clear storage.
This is going to wipe everything off the app. So, it’s going to be like installing it for the first time.
5: Sensor error
The “sensor error” is undoubtedly one of the most common Dexcom errors. And we’ve got both good news and bad news regarding that subject.
The good news is that, more often than not, you can fix this for free.
The bad news is that since this seems to be directly related to the physical sensor, you’ll have to ask Dexcom for a physical transmitter/sensor.
Remember that the G7 combined the sensor and a disposable transmitter into one, while the Dexcom G6 has a separate sensor and transmitter.
If physical contact is an issue, we recommend you pick up the SKIN GRIP for your Dexcom or similar adhesive and waterproof patches, and extend your sensor life by more than 10+ days.
This problem seems to come up when the blood sugar rises above a specific threshold – and the exact threshold can significantly differ from sensor to sensor.
We’ve yet to see a software fix for this. So, all you can do here is call Dexcom and hope that they’ll agree to a solution.
Signal Loss and Connection Errors on Dexcom
Tip: One of the common problems apparently occurs because you may have old Bluetooth connections from your older Dexcom sensors. If you are an iPhone user, start by opening up the Settings app. Settings > Bluetooth > ‘My DEVICES’. Delete any past Dexcom sensor Bluetooth connections from here.
Signal Loss Errors on Dexcom One?
Some users find that they keep getting the annoying ‘Signal Loss’ error messages when using their iPhone with Dexcom One. Some users find that disconnecting the Dexcom app from Apple Health solves many of the signal loss errors.
Dexcom G7 users sometimes see an error message when trying to log in to the app that reads ‘Dexcom Server issue. Try again later.”
Some users find that resetting their phone and then trying to log in to the app often resolves this issue.
We suggest that you also check out the operational status of Dexcom servers and software when you run into this issue. You can check the Dexcom server’s operational status easily.
Is Dexcom App not working with a smartwatch?
Unable to get Dexcom readings on your wearOS smartwatch?
The Dexcom app setup works pretty well for iOS users but, for some reason, has intermittent issues with the Android ecosystem. This is particularly the case for wearOS users trying to pipe data from their Android phone into their wearOS smartwatch.
Try these steps if you have issues getting the readings onto your Fossil Gen 5 smartwatch, Ticwatch, or other wearOS smartwatches from Dexcom.
- Restart your phone, followed by
- Restart your Smartwatch
- Give it some time and check if the Dexcom readings start showing up on your watch
The better approach for Android users is to try and use the BYOD Dexcom app and Xdrip. If you want, you can use Xdrip to upload data into nightspot or tidepool. That way, you have another data source in case Dexcom servers are down.
Dexcom blood glucose readings on Apple Watch with Always-on-display
Apple users tend to have a better experience with the Dexcom app on iOS.
If you are looking for a richer Dexcom experience on your Apple iPhone and Apple Watch, we recommend trying out the Sugarmate app.
Sugarmate is a companion app for iPhone users of the Dexcom G5/G6/G7 continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) systems and also offers Apple Watch integration along with a web app for non-Apple users and can work with Amazon Alexa.
Why Sugarmate for Apple Watch?
For one, the Sugarmate app updates your readings more frequently than the Dexcom app. On your Apple Watch, it uses the Calendar complication to update.
Choose any Apple Watch face with a calendar component and put the calendar complication on your Apple Watch face.
When setting up the Sugarmate app, follow the directions to send Dev data to your calendar. You can create a new calendar called ‘Sugarmate readings’ and make it your default calendar.
Sugarmate on your iPhone can also help show your reading on your car dash via CarPlay when you connect your iPhone.
Is Dexcom data not showing via Sugarmate on Apple Watch? Have you tried syncing data
For Apple Watch users who have intermittent data syncing issues with the Dexcom app, one of the things that help is forcing the watch to sync the data manually.
- Open the Watch app on your iOS device.
- Tap General > Reset.
- Tap Reset Sync Data multiple times.
- Erases all calendar and contacts data from Apple Watch and refreshes/re-syncs that data from your iPhone.
- Wait 5-10 minutes and check if the BG readings show up.
Bonus Dexcom tips and tricks
These are some of the most common Dexcom issues and what you can do about them. Before closing off, here are some endnotes to further help you:
- Always run the Dexcom app in the background. For iPhones, turn on background app refresh for the app in Settings > General > Background App Refresh. For Android, check your App Settings.
- Limit the number of apps that your phone runs in the background. As reader John points out, having too many apps running at one time often causes problems with the Dexcom app, especially on iPhones.
- Please don’t close or force close the Dexcom app–it needs to be on standby and refreshing in the background to work successfully.
- Don’t use battery savings or low power mode–this leads to errors with the Dexcom app.
- Try turning off Bluetooth and then turning it immediately back on.
- Open the Dexcom app and close all other apps. Then, forget the Dexcom from your phone’s Bluetooth settings. With the Dexcom app still open, then re-pair it with your phone. You should see a pairing request in the app. Accept it and follow any on-screen instructions to complete the pairing.
- Restart your phone by powering it off, waiting 30+ seconds, and powering back on.
- If you don’t like Dexcom’s stock case, you can also find 3rd party ones on Tallygear, myabetic, Shapeways, and even more, if you’re willing to do a Google search and look around.
- Keep 844-607-8398 handy. It’s Dexcom’s customer support number, and you never know when you may need it.
- Be careful where you place the Dexcom. You don’t want to lay on it while you’re sleeping. Not only it’s uncomfortable – but it can also introduce false lows and false highs.
- Set the follow high range a few points higher for your followers.
- Dexcom sometimes gives free adhesives if you call them.
Common Dexcom errors: wrapping up
And that’s about it for now. If you need anything else, feel free to drop a comment, and maybe the MyHealthyApple team will come back to you as soon as possible.
If you liked this article, feel free to stick around for more health news, gadget reviews, how-to guides, and more like this.
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