How Often Should You Get An Automatic Watch Serviced ?
Automatic watches are slightly thicker than traditional models with manual winding, as their mechanism consists of a larger number of parts, among which the main one is the rotor – a rotating part, taking the place of the oscillating mass, which was used in the first watches with automatic winding. The rotor performs a revolution (or part of it) every time the clock changes position: between the rotor and the drum wheel there are several gear wheels whose function is to reduce the force produced by the rotor for the plant.
Unlike watches with a manual winding, in an automatic watch the spiral is not fixed on the inner wall of the drum, but is equipped with a slider – a metal part, due to which the spring can slide inside the drum, which helps to avoid excessive tension and possible breakage when the winding is complete.
When should an automatic watch be serviced?
Your automatic watch is a unique piece made up of many elements carefully designed and assembled with the greatest care. This real miniature engine works 24/7 to accompany you in all your daily adventures. To keep your automatic watch looking flawless and working optimally, it is important to service it regularly.
The time between two servicing depends on many parameters (brand and technology used in the movement, frequency of use, use of a winder for an automatic watch, age of the watch). Anyway, it is necessary to carry out a maintenance after 3 to 5 years. This period should be shortened if you ever detect or suspect a dysfunction such as:
• Going ahead or behind more than 10 seconds a day (you can synchronize your watch precisely on: GMT ),
• Problem when passing the date,
• Strange behavior of the chronograph,
• Quick stop of the watch after having worn it
Careful maintenance of your automatic watch on a day-to-day basis is a guarantee of sustainability, especially since it can be summed up in a few simple reflexes: avoid wearing your watch during activities that expose it to shocks, avoid baths or showers – even for waterproof watches, the risks being linked to the sudden temperature difference , do not use chemicals to clean it, do not change the date outside the hours mentioned in the manual. This maintenance is not sufficient to guarantee the proper functioning of the watch in the long term, it must be accompanied by regular servicing.
Only a watchmaker can maintain the movement of a watch. If no element of the watch is broken, a qualified watchmaker, whether dedicated to the brand or general practitioner, performs a complete overhaul of the movement . To do this, it performs the following operations:
• Opening of the case,
• Removal of the movement of the case & disassembly of the movement,
• Verification and cleaning of each part,
• Control of the elements of the dial (hands, index, etc.),
• Reassembly and oiling of all components
• Changing the seals and closing the case & tightness control
• Chronometric performance monitoring
If necessary, the watchmaker can replace a defective part with a strictly identical part. The watchmaker can also intervene to restore the case and the glass to give it new appearance. After an overhaul, the watch will function as new.
If the automatic watch is not used for a long time, it is recommended to start the mechanism manually once every three weeks to avoid drying of lubricants. The self-winding movement replenishes its energy supply through hand movements. An improperly adjusted bracelet can lead to a loss of energy autonomy of the mechanism (automatic winding stops functioning), therefore it is very important that the length of the bracelet is precisely adjusted by hand. When fully wound, the power reserve of the watch without being worn on the hand is a maximum of 70 hours. After this time, the watch must be manually started.
Despite the fact that these watches are designed in such a way as to be less susceptible to external influences, their mechanism is quite delicate. To maintain optimum accuracy and reliability of the watch mechanism, it is recommended to take the watch off during “extreme” sports, such as golf or tennis, in which settings can be changed or various parts of the mechanism damaged due to repeated shaking.
The key to automatic watch maintenance
It is good that the watch is kept running and do not leave it stored too long. However, if you are going to stop using it for a season, sell boxes that move from time to time so that the watch remains in good condition. It is normal for the watch to go ahead or delay from 1 to 4 minutes per month, its correct running. After all, automatic watches are not as accurate as quartz watches. So, up to 10 seconds a day is the right gear (10 sec x 30 days = 5 minutes) if it exceeds this you already need to service it.
Automatic watch Cleaning
It is essential to prevent dust, dirt and / or sweat from accumulating on the watch. To clean the automatic watch you only need to wipe it with a cloth dampened in warm water and then dry it with a dry cloth. If the watch is submerged in the sea or the pool, we also recommend cleaning the watch with warm water to remove the remains of salt and chlorine for act. Salt and chlorine can affect both the appearance and the inside of the watch. Therefore, we will follow the same steps as before to ensure good maintenance of the automatic watch
There are some occasions when you should not wear the watch. It occurs in the case of extreme temperatures (cold or heat) that can affect the viscosity of the lubricating liquid. Take it off also when you sleep, to avoid hitting it unconsciously during the night. Nor should you use it in sports where you make many sudden movements with your arm (tennis, golf …) to avoid damage to your machinery. Nor is it a good idea to approach magnetic fields with the watch: magnets, magnetic resonance devices.
Underwater watch use
Even if the automatic watch is submersible, if you bathe with it, it is recommended that you then pass it under a stream of tap water to remove the remains of salt and chlorine (they can be corrosive) and then dry it with a cloth. Also, never press the chronograph buttons when you’re underwater.