Watches are a classic accessory that can boost any outfit, but what do you do when the battery runs out? In this post, we'll show you how to change a watch battery in just a few simple steps.
Getting your quartz watch into working order need not necessitate an expensive trip to the jeweler.
So your quartz watch battery has died. This is a common problem with these watches, and it's really easy to fix. All you need is a screwdriver and a new battery-type CR2032, available at most drugstores. First, turn the watch over and locate the screws on the back. Carefully remove them with your screwdriver. Once the screws are out, you can gently pry the back of the watch off with your fingernails (or a small flathead screwdriver). Be careful not to damage the gasket, which is the thin ring that sits between the case and back of the watch. Once the back is off, you should be able to see the battery. Use your screwdriver to remove it and replace it with the new one. Replace the back of the watch and screws, and voilà! You're ready to wear your watch again.
Everything You'll Need
Step 1: Know what you're working with
Watches are like any other battery-powered device-- they eventually need a new battery. Knowing how to change a watch battery is a handy skill to have. The first step is identifying what type of watch you have. If your watch has a screw back, you should see several notches or a raised edge that's used in conjunction with a tool to open it. If it's a snap back, there will be a small notch or lip that's used to pop it off. If you're very, very lucky and you own something like a CWC or MWC watch (or certain Timexes), the back pops off without any tools necessary. But for the rest of us mortals, we need to use one of the following tools: watch case opener, eyeglass screwdriver, butter knife, or even a quarter.
Step 2: Open the case back
There are a few different ways to open a watch case back, but the most common ones are screw backs and snap backs. If your watch has a screw back, all you need is a small screwdriver to get the job done. If it has a snap back, find the little notch in the case and slide in the case knife. Apply some upward pressure and the back should pop right off. If your watch has a battery hatch (like in the image below), grab a coin and twist that sucker off. Easy as that!
Step 3: Choose the right battery
Now it's time to choose the right battery for your watch. Remove the old battery and take a close look at it so you can find the matching replacement. Match the battery type (silver oxide, lithium ion, etc.), as well as the size and shape. If you're unsure, take the old battery to your local jeweler or watch store for help. Once you have the new battery in hand, pop out the old one (or use a toothpick to do so) and simply snap the new one in place. Make sure it's oriented correctly—the positive and negative signs should be facing up.
Step 4: Close the case back
There are three ways to close the case back on your watch: re-thread the case back and use the tool to close it; snap it back on with your hand; or re-thread the battery hatch. If you're using the tool, it's very important that you use the correct end for your watch. Make sure the case back is properly closed so there's no chance of water getting in.
If the watch battery is inserted incorrectly, it may not make contact with the watch's electrical contacts. If this is the case, you may hear a "click" when you twist the battery cover back on. If the watch still isn't working, try another battery. If it still doesn't work, the watch itself may be damaged and beyond repair. In this case, you may be able to order a new movement for the watch from the watchmaker, though because quartz movements are so inexpensive, it may be more cost-effective to simply buy a new watch.
A watch battery is a small cylindrical battery that is used to power quartz watches. They are usually disk-shaped and are made of nickel-cadmium, nickel-metal-hydride, or lithium. If your quartz watch isn't keeping time, it may be time to change the watch battery. Here's a guide on how to change a watch battery.
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