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Maintenance of Automatic Watches
Unlike digital and quartz wristwatches, regular automatic watch maintenance is required for any self-winding timepiece, whether it be a pilot watch / aviator watch, diver watch, or chronograph watch. But don’t get the wrong impression; this does not mean that watches with automatic movement are prone to damage or malfunction. It is only because they are designed with mechanical clockwork, which every horologist would describe as rather complicated and traditional. How you should keep them in good working condition will be different from the way you usually treat your quartz timepieces. Automatic wristwatches basically need to be winded every two days. On the other hand, you can practically ignore a digital timepiece since it will continue to run anyway until its battery is used up.
For those who are planning to own an automatic watch in the future, it is necessary to learn the maintenance techniques to keep you in pace with time. Observing proper care for this kind of clock mechanism will also help prolong the life of your timepiece.
Recommendations to Keep Your Automatic Watches Running Tip Top
Contrary to what many people think, the upkeep for an automatic watch does not cost much. There is not even a need for regular battery replacement since it is powered by mechanical force. However, you should also make “time” for tuning up your timepiece. Here are some recommended ways on how you can do it:
Make it a point to always check your watch for necessary winding. Depending on the power reserve of your watch, you may need to do it regularly. In most cases, a fully-wound automatic wristwatch can run straight for 48 hours. Wind the timepiece manually by pulling the crown and turning it clockwise. It is best if you have an electronic winder so you can conveniently keep the mechanism running. It is especially helpful for models that also have perpetual calendars and other timekeeping features.
The ideal number of turns for winding an automatic watch depends on the model. For men, 30 turns should make the timepiece fully wound. On the other hand, a woman’s watch will likely to need only 15-20 turns. Keep them within the prescribed limit to avoid damaging the rotor.
Lubricate the gears to avoid malfunction of the watch due to the coagulation of the oil. You can do this by simply winding the timepiece on a regular basis. However, full servicing and routine re-lubrication are still required every 3-5 years. Prior to these, you should check if the watch is still covered with the manufacturer’s warranty to prevent it from getting tampered by unauthorized repair or other automatic watch maintenance services.