Avoid Needing Watch Repair: Watch Care Tips
Watches are precision instruments, made of delicate working parts that not only help keep us on time but usually have special meaning in our lives. From family heirloom pocket watches to wristwatches received as birthday and anniversary gifts, if you wear a watch everyday or only for special occasions there are some watch care tips we want to share to help you avoid watch repairs.
Proper Watch Maintenance
1. Watch Cleaning Methods
Over time, particles can get into the gears of a watch and cause them to become slow or stop working. Build up occurs on the outside of a watch from natural oil and sweat as well as lotions or soap residue and seeps into the casing or watch crystal which can compromise the timekeeping precision. To keep your watch working seamlessly, remember to wipe your watch and the watch band with a soft, dry cloth when you take it off each day or at least once a week to help remove the dirt and moisture that builds up. We all know Arizona summers are hot so the added sweat does not bode well for your watch. If you are especially active and your watch is not water resistant, be sure to remove it during more strenuous exercise and of course, always remove a watch before swimming unless it is specifically made for underwater activity.
2. Appropriately Setting Your Watch
Different types of watches require different winding methods. If you have a manual watch, wind it fully at the same time each day for the best timekeeping results. Be sure that you gently twist the crown and stop if you feel any resistance as forcing it may damage the mechanisms. If you have an automatic watch then it requires motion to keep its time. When first setting an automatic watch, turn the crown about 30 times, tightly secure the crown and put it on your wrist and if you wear it everyday it should only need wound every few weeks. If you only wear your automatic watch on special occasions then try to remember to wind it weekly so that the mechanisms stay oiled and moving.
3. Watch Battery Replacement
Watch batteries may need replaced every year or could last a few years depending on a few factors. If a watch is worn frequently or is older then it may need more frequent battery changes whereas a newer watch, with newer technology and gears may last longer before needing a battery replaced. Also, if your watch keeps the date or has other functions then the battery will drain faster than a watch which just keeps the time.
4. Watch Band Maintenance
There are several types of watch bands and different techniques for caring for them. For metal bands, even stainless steel, they have a tendency to rust over time due to dirt or sweat. Be sure to wipe the band frequently with a soft, dry cloth and if the band needs a deeper cleaning then we suggest bringing it to a professional jeweler or watchmaker. It is possible to wrap the watch in plastic and then clean the band with a soft toothbrush and gentle soap and water mixture but moisture could still find its way into the watch crystal and gears. We like to play it safe and let the professionals take care of the deep cleaning! Leather watch bands need to be stored in a breathable space to let the band breath and dry out from any sweat or moisture. Especially here in Arizona, be sure not to keep a leather watch band in direct sunlight for too long as it may discolor the band or cause it to wear out faster and tear. Lastly, urethane bands may seem more durable and obviously less prone to rust with the exception of pins in the band but if left in the sunlight can become discolored or cracked. Store these watch bands in a well ventilated place away from any sunlight and wash off dirt with a damp cloth but be sure to dry them very well.
Knowing the proper care for different watches and watch bands will hopefully help you steer clear of any major watch damage. Of course if something does go amiss with your watch be sure to bring it in. Our trained experts will carefully inspect and repair or replace the watch battery, the band, the gaskets, or the watch crystal. Feel free to check out our watch repair services or if you have any other questions we are always here to help!