How To Care For Your Dive Watch
Dive watches are mechanical watches designed to withstand being submerged underwater for prolonged periods of time. The most basic parts of a dive watch are the rotating bezel and screw-in crown – both of which help in its water resistance.
Here are some tips for you to keep your dive watch in tiptop condition!
1. Rinse after being in water
This first tip might sound ironic. Why do I have to rinse my dive watch if it is already wet? Well, sea water, and even pool water, contain substances that are damaging to your watch. Always rinse your watch with clean tap water after each dive or pool session to get the salt water or chlorine off your watch. Salt water is especially detrimental to your watch as it can cause rust in the long-term.
2. Clean the exterior thoroughly
Apart from just rinsing your watch with clean water, we advise you to give the exterior of the watch a thorough wipe/scrub after each dive. Other than salt water, substances such as sand, slime and tiny particles may get stuck outside and inside the watch. For exterior cleaning, use a soft microfiber cloth to wipe gently or a soft-bristled brush to scrub away at more stubborn smudges. Be careful not to accidentally scratch the watch or damage its paint job.
A reminder to never open the watch by yourself and mess with its interior! Leave the interior cleaning to your watch technicians.
3. Turn the bezel
A bezel is an essential component of a dive watch. Not purely decorative, the bezel helps to track the elapsed time a diver has spent underwater. Small particles such as sand, dirt and salt water might get stuck in between the bezel & the case, and keep it from rotating smoothly. When rinsing the watch, turn the bezel to help wash off these small particles.
4. Check the gaskets
One of the important elements in a dive watch that keeps it water-resistant. Over time, rubber gaskets can flatten or become brittle and crack. The deteriorating condition of the gaskets will affect the water resistance of the watch. Especially if you dive regularly, try to get your watch pressure-tested and the gaskets inspected every year. Dive watch manufacturers estimate that gaskets need to be changed every 18 to 36 months.
5. Check the crown
A decent dive watch should have at least a screw-in crown. Check if the crown is secured tightly as water can enter the watch if the crown is loose. Always remember to lock your crown after every adjustment of its timing.
6. Check the crystal for signs of fogging
Ensure that you can see the watch face clearly – especially important underwater where low light affects visibility. If you see condensation under the crystal, take your watch to a watch service centre immediately. It can mean that water has entered the watch and you can expect more damages if you don't get it fixed.
7. Check the dial and the luminous indices
If you have missed the tell-tale signs of the crystal fogging, then checking the dial & indices may give clues to whether water/moisture has seeped in your watch. When you can see light patches on your watch dial or when the indices have lost their glow, you should check your watch with a service centre. Prolonged non-intervention will only lead to dial and indices discoloration.
8. Service regularly
If you frequently dive or swim with your watch, it is recommended that you send your watch for servicing at least once or twice a year. This will ensure the components of the watch are working properly, it remains water-resistant and performs its function well.
Even if you don’t bring your dive watches on swims or dives, we hope these tips will still come in handy!
What other types of watches are you interested to learn more about? Let us know in the comments :)