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4250 - routing - traffic questions/issues/rant

carpeperdiem 0 Points
edited November -1 in Magellan Vehicle Forum
I have owned a 4250 now for 2 weeks (my first auto gps), and there are some things about it that I really dig -- and I can live with other quirks (maybe) but the non-negotiable, I'll turn it off unless it works well:


It was my understanding that the 4250, if Traffic is enabled, and traffic reception is good, and you are in a well reported metro area (I am in New York City), the unit should in theory, find the best (fastest if that was selected) route, factoring in the traffic status, yes?

My little trip yesterday was from Manhattan's upper west side to Freeport, Long Island. It started out perfectly -- I saw the route that it suggested (west side highway/cross bronx/throgs neck/cross island/southern/meadowbrook) -- which is the exact route that google maps also proposed, and is the same route my vendor suggested we take... so all was fine until I had to make one stop before getting on the highway - one block to the east, and one block north of my home.

At this point, Magellan decided to route me through harlem and to the willis ave bridge/bruckner -- The last time I didn't do what Magellan said, I landed in a traffic jam... so I willingly went along. I would have backtracked one block to get on the highway... this became a TOTAL mess... the rain started pouring down... we had 1.3" of rain in 2 hours or so... so roads started flooding... but that's not the issue here...

Questioning Magellan, I asked it to find the fastest route, when I was on 125th street -- and it then came back with Triborough bridge -- hmm... that's the long way... BUT IT MUST KNOW SOMETHING...

So I followed along... and then it took me on a wild backroads trek -- exit into the parking lot exit for LGA airport, then find a service road -- would you know, it put me NORTH on the whitestone expressway, which then fed into the cross island south (whcih is what I wanted). I NEVER would have considered this an option, but if the traffic is bad, maybe Magellan knew something.

We got to our destination only a few minutes late, and considering the insane storm and road flooding, we were very happy. It was my belief that Magellan knew something, and routed us around the nasty traffic on a Friday afternoon in the rain.

Ok, now it's 5:30pm, and we want to go home. "Magellan, Go Home"... calculating route... and now it puts us on the southern, DEAD INTO a parking lot. The unit had a good 6-7 minutes to talk to traffic radio and re-route if it wanted to... OK... no problem. IT MUST KNOW SOMETHING... maybe the southern is still better than any other route.

The southern eventually started moving at 40-45mph, fine... but when we got to the cross island, it wanted us to stay to the left -- to get on the Belt Pkwy -- now I know this was going to be trouble, BUT IT MUST KNOW SOMETHING... it told us to take the van wyck north (now I know I'm in trouble). BUT IT MUST KNOW SOMETHING.

Parking lot.

Let's listen to 1010 WINS and see what the real traffic guys in the helicopter has to say... at the same time, I asked magellan to re-route me avoiding all highways.

We got home in about 2 hours, taking Queens blvd all the way, and the 59th st bridge.

The cross island was moving fine according to the radio. WHY didn't Magellan take me this route (which is the route that googlemaps/would select by default)?

WHY THE F@#$ did Magellan drive me right into a traffic nightmare? There were 20 other routes that would have been superior.

QUESTION TO THE VETERANS -- how often do you guys just go the way you know is going to better, vs. following Magellan's instructions?

How can we trust the traffic receiver if it doesn't route us around the mess? Is there a "best" setting that I could be using (I'm set to defaults).

I am noticing that Magellan will rarely/never route me backwards, even one block, in order to take a much faster route. This is frustrating... starting out yesterday, the estimated time started at 50 minutes, I drove one block east, it rerouted to 56 minutes. One block backtrack would take 15 seconds to drive... this is not logical to me...

Thanks for any suggestions you can give me here... wife is not impressed (yet).


  • Tim 1497 Points
    how often do you guys just go the way you know is going to better, vs. following Magellan's instructions?
    That depends how confident I am that my way will be better. Most of the time (with any GPS) I'll take the way I know is better unless I can see that the device does know more than I do about a traffic situation on the route I would have taken.
  • sandyp 0 Points
    I have the 4250 and I've noticed the same issue occasionally, and just follow what I know best, unless real traffic conditions dictate otherwsie. I never get the "when possible make a legal U-Turn). I used to get that message all the time with the Roadmate 760.

    I find the traffic alerts are generally useless (I am in Orange County, CA). I am usually in a jam and it never recognizes it, yet it warns me of conditions when they don't appear to be a problem.

    Overall, I still like the 4250.

  • sandyp 0 Points
    Another situation today. traveling towards the 405 Freeway in Southern Orange County. The 4250 showed no traffic incidents, yet the 405 came to a complete standstill .. all 5 lanes. Heard on the radio that there were 4 lanes closed off up a few miles due to an overturned SUV. So why did the Magellan traffic alert not alert! I'll let the 3 month trial lapse. I find the traffic alert system to be toatlly useless.

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