Some watches have batteries. Your everyday timepiece might just stop working if you’re not aware of this fact. Most modern battery-powered watches (quartz movements) require a battery. If yours has one as well, It might be handy to know how long watch batteries last, to prepare for the unexpected.

On average, batteries in a normal (quartz) watch can last up to three to six years. The lifespan depends on the age and the quality of the watch movement. For replacement batteries, it is recommended to replace the batteries every year to avoid and prepare for the unexpected.

Watch batteries shouldn’t be something to worry about when buying a new timepiece, that’s why we put all the important stuff in one article, answering all your questions.

Factors on which watch battery life depends

So, now that we know the numbers, it can actually be a little more than what you expected. But it’s true, a brand new watch battery can actually last relatively long if you compare it to normal everyday batteries. With a lifespan of three to six years, these little circles can last longer than most would expect.

1. First vs. Replacement watch batteries

The lifespan of your watch batteries depends on several factors, not only the watch battery but also the watch itself. One of them for example is that it’s definitely not uncommon for your first watch battery to last longer than your replacement watch batteries.

This is the reason we recommended the one-year replacement. Your first watch battery that comes with your new bought watch will typically last three to six years, it’s handy to replace your replacement batteries every year. This way you’ll avoid sudden situations where your watch stops.

2. Sealing the case

The sealing of the case of the watch is important. The watch case contains the actual movement. A well-sealed case is important for keeping away dust and expanding the battery life because of proper protection of the movement. Therefore, it’s important to reseal a watch once in a while to protect its battery and the rest of the movement and extend its lifespan.

3. Turning off your watch

Another reason that could impact your watch battery life is whether or not you turn off your watches when you don’t use them. ATTENTION! This only applies to some watches, so please do your research before you go of this blindly.

Some watch movements have the ability to be turned off. When pulling out the crown of your watch, you can make the second-hand stop moving. Mechanically speaking, the crown in a quartz movement stops the hands from running and allows them to be adjusted.

There are some kinds of watch movements that actually drain more battery when the hands are disengaged, due to the movement not having the load from pulling the weight off the hands. So be careful if this is not the case with your watch. But for most modern watches, this is a trick to make your watch’s batteries last longer.

How Long Do Watch Batteries Last

How to tell if watch batteries need replacing

Now that we know how long a watch battery should last, it’s good to know how you can tell if the battery needs replacing. Because these numbers are obviously estimates and vary from watch to watch. There are a few signs that you can recognize on your watch that will tell you that your watch batteries might be running low or maybe already have stopped working. A few signs that your watch stops could be:

  • Watch stops moving
  • Watch is always ahead/behind time
  • The crown needs a lot more effort

If a watch stops moving out of nowhere it’s obviously a good time to think about a battery replacement. This is a common one, but there are different factors that could determine your battery life expiring. If your watch keeps keeping the wrong time, it could also be your battery running low on life.

Another one is when the crown needs a lot of effort to adjust the second-hand. You may suddenly have to put in a lot less effort to get the crown to move, or a lot more. This doesn’t have to mean that your watch is broken, but can also mean that the battery is expiring.

Does it matter what battery I put in my watch

The next step after we found out if we need to change the batteries at all, is to find out whether it matters what battery we put into the watch. It matters what battery you put in a watch. This depends on the manufacturer’s recommendations, which you can look into to determine your watch replacement battery. If you don’t know the manufacturer’s company, look on the back of the watch battery to identify the number on the battery.

Identify your watch’s battery number to know what replacement battery you need. There are several tools online to identify the codes on the back of your watch battery and acquire the right fitting battery to the number. You can also go to a local store to get your battery sorted, and immediately buy it from there.

The different watch batteries

In the modern world, there are many different types of watch batteries. What also makes it difficult to make a choice, is that every manufacturer has its own type of designation. In addition, batteries also have capacity. The different categories can be divided into types. The actual capacity depends on the cut-off voltage of the watch used. Watch batteries are also called button cell batteries, and we divide these button cell batteries into three chemistry types:

  • Alkaline
  • Silver-oxide
  • Lithium

Alkaline (1.50 V).

Alkaline watch batteries contain relatively little power. Due to the discharge process, gas is released in an Alkaline watch battery, which causes the battery to expand. These also have a chance of leaking and damaging your watch, and are therefore the least popular ones of the three types. So, we don’t recommend using these.

Silver-oxide (1.60 V)

Silver-oxide is the most popular watch battery. Due to the addition of silver oxide (SR), these batteries last a lot longer than the alkaline version. These can even last up to 3 years of lifespan. Silver-oxide watch batteries last the longest of the three but are also the most expensive ones.

Lithium (3.7 V)

Lithium batteries are also used quite frequently, these can also actually live up to 5 years. While these batteries could be sensitive to high temperatures. They have a high energy density and low self-discharge, which means they last up to seven times longer than a regular battery.

How do I know the size of my watch batteries

When the time is there to start replacing your watch batteries, you need to know your size of yours. As we mentioned before, the first thing you should do is to look up your number in the owner’s manual to know the specific model. This will tell you exactly what battery your watch needs, and from there you can go into a store and tell them what you need.

Looking up your watch’s battery number is done by opening up the back of your watch. Usually, this will go as follows; place your fingernail or a blade in the notch and try to pry the back. This way, you can open up the back of your watch and find the watch’s battery. When you found it, look on top of the battery and identify the code. In very rare cases, this number is also printed on the back of your watch.

watch batteries

Which watch batteries last the longest

When choosing a replacement battery, it’s probably handy to know the longest-lasting battery. This award goes to the lithium watch battery. lithium batteries can last anywhere from five up to ten years, which is an amazing score.

Compared to conventional batteries, lithium-ion batteries charge faster, last longer, and have greater power density. In addition, lithium batteries are always hermetically sealed in a casing. This ensures that your batteries will leak less quickly, and therefore won’t destroy your watch. These batteries are found in every local store and come in different types. They usually come with the  battery code, (UN).

Final words

Watch batteries can last a very long time, depending on the watch, the battery, and the maintenance of your watch. There are several things you can do to expand your watch’s battery life. But, if you want to make it last as long as possible, you need to treat it carefully.

When buying a watch, firstly, think of the type of watch you bought. Is it a mechanical or a quartz movement? Quartz movements will require battery replacement. When first buying a watch, your watch battery will last longer than any of your replacement batteries, which is something to keep in mind. The fist battery that comes with your watch can last up to 3 to 6 years. After replacing your first battery, it’s not weird to think of a new replacement battery every year, this will keep you from unexpected situations where your watch might stop.

When thinking of buying a replacement battery, try to think of the different chemistry types. Silver-oxide, Alkaline, or lithium batteries have different specifications and can influence your decisions. Make sure you know what to buy for your timepiece, and keep on using this type of battery for replacement every year.

All in all, watch batteries don’t have to be as complicated as they look. Just make sure you do your research ones if you bought a new watch, and think of the things you need. This doesn’t only apply to a watch battery, but also to the rest of your watch’s specifications. For more information about men’s fashion accessories, you can check out our website that answers all your watch questions here! Also, check out our latest article about Rolex watches here.

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