We’ve all had this happen. Just going about our day as usual to notice the Fitbit app has, for some reason, racked up a high floor count. What’s going on?
How do Fitbit devices calculate floors?
Fitbit devices detect floors using something called an altimeter. This is a sensor that measures altitude based on atmospheric pressure. The device on your wrist takes these readings to estimate elevation gain. Fitbit assumes an elevation increase of 10 feet equates to 1 floor. The company has estimated that this is the average between residential and commercial floor heights in the United States.
There are problems when detecting floors climbed based on atmospheric pressure. Natural elements such as a gust of wind or weather change can effect the measurements. Even something as simple as opening a door can sometimes cause your Fitbit to register extra floors! Mowing the lawn can be a cause of an elevated count as can many other activities.
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The second thing to keep in mind is that the device on your wrist equates 10 feet to 1 floor climbed. Long staircases may rack up your floor count pretty quickly. The other culprit are moving staircases. Combine that with manually climbing while on a moving staircase and your floor count will shoot right up.
How to correct the data?
Unfortunately the Fitbit app does not allow you to delete floors, or steps for that matter. It’s not ideal but there is a workaround. It consists of adding a driving activity to override the extra floors or steps.
This can be done one of two ways. In the Fitbit app, choose the Today tab and then the Exercise tile. Tap on the + icon/Log or Log Previous to add an exercise. Choose Driving as the exercise type but make sure the details overlap the time period of the unwanted steps or floors. Tap Add or Log.
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Now go back to the main view. Have a look and you’ll notice the floors and steps have magically disappeared for the time period you specified.
The same can be done via the Website dashboard. Choose the Log tab and go to Activites. Under Log Activites add a Driving exercise. Again, main sure to specify the correct time period. Tap on Log to finish.
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