A fine watch is more than just a timepiece; it is an investment in precision and style. It’s only natural that you’ll want to take care of your investment and keep your watch running smoothly. In this watch-care guide, we’ll answer some frequently asked questions about watch cleaning, care, and maintenance, as well as share some tips that may help you extend the life of your watch.
What Is the Most Safe Way to Clean a Watch?
A dry microfiber cloth is the gentlest and safest way to clean a watch, but heavier dirt buildup may necessitate a more thorough clean. Check that the watch’s crown is screwed down against the case (for maximum water resistance), then use a very soft brush, soap, and warm – but not hot – water to clean it. Finish by rinsing your watch and gently drying and polishing it with that all-purpose microfiber cloth.
Never use detergents or solvents to clean your watch because they can tarnish the metal surfaces or eat away at the water-resistant seals.
Should I Remove the Wound from My Watch?
True. Watches are mechanical devices with many tiny moving parts; these parts are lubricated, but the lubricant can congeal over time. This is more likely to occur if the watch is turned off for an extended period of time. By keeping your watch wound – and thus running – you can keep the lubricant at the proper consistency to protect the mechanism.
It is critical to wind your watch correctly. Winding a watch while wearing it can cause strain or even breakage of the winding stem.
What Is the Difference Between Waterproof and Water Resistant?
Waterproof refers to something that is completely impervious to water; it is uncommon for watches to be labelled in this manner. However, many watches are water resistant, which means they are resistant to water up to a certain pressure. If you swim or dive while wearing a watch, you should be aware of its limitations. Keep in mind that aftermarket modifications, such as the addition of aftermarket bezels, can affect water resistance, so it’s usually best not to expose customised watches to water.
Can Salt Ruin a Watch?
When your watch is exposed to salt water (such as sea water), small salt deposits may form on the surface as it dries, which can be unsightly. The best way to avoid problems is to immediately rinse your watch with clean, fresh water after exposure. Fine abrasive particles such as salt and sand can also scratch watches; once again, a thorough rinse is the best solution.
Tip: Never use a cloth or brush to remove salt or sand from your watch; this will only increase the risk of scratching. Always start with a rinse.
Should I Stay Away from Extreme Temperatures?
Yes, extreme heat, cold, and sudden temperature changes can all cause malfunctions or even breakages. Watches, as precision instruments, are designed to perform best at or near normal room temperature, but high-quality watches are usually fairly temperature tolerant. The majority of good watches will work reliably between 32 and 140 degrees.
Can Magnets Ruin Watches?
The ability of a watch to keep accurate time can be affected by exposure to a strong magnetic field. Of course, we are constantly exposed to magnetism; every electrical device generates a weak magnetic field. This type of day-to-day exposure rarely causes problems, but if you’re working with strong magnets (such as electromagnets), you should remove your watch first to ensure its accuracy.
When to Seek Assistance
This watch-care guide should assist you in taking care of your timepiece and avoiding some of the most common causes of damage. Even so, watches are designed to be worn, and accidents do happen. If your watch breaks – or simply wears out – it is best to have it repaired by a professional.