How to change a watch battery?

Watchmaking is often a story of passion. You love your tocantes and they quickly end up becoming a little piece of you. As time passes and the minutes preciously count on your second hand, your watch battery may run out and time will stop. Of course, this type of problem does not happen to all watches. The mechanical watch , whether automatic winding or manual winding since it does not have a battery, but operates using a barrel, escapement, regulating organ, is not concerned. However, if you have in your watch collection, a tocante quartz , sooner or later you will face this problem.

Let's see then how to change a watch battery easily ?

Summary :

Go to your favorite watchmaking professional or jeweler

We say it because it seems important. The battery in your timepieces has a lifespan and replacing it yourself is not a trivial matter. To ensure that a used battery is changed in the best possible conditions, the safest thing to do is to make an appointment with a specialist .

Changing your battery yourself: the risks to take into account

The main danger is that your watch is no longer waterproof, making it vulnerable to humidity. If you open your watch and do not perfectly replace the seal around the edge without damaging it, your watch will no longer be perfectly airtight. To ensure that your miniature clock is safe from water, humidity and all liquids, have this step carried out by a specialist.

Did you know ? Certain watches indicated as being waterproof up to 100 m are sometimes completely devoid of this seal.

You should know that it is best to avoid handling the battery with your fingers! Since these are conductive, the battery could discharge quickly and create a short circuit. Wearing gloves will also prevent fingerprints, sweat and dust.

To carry out these manipulations, it is recommended to use tweezers, plastic tweezers or a Rodico type eraser .

Be sure to clean the battery with a soft cloth before repositioning it.

In case some of you would like to try it, here is a little tutorial that will help you.

The different types of case backs and the necessary tools

The first thing you need to know is that there are three different types of case backs and not all of them open the same way. There is therefore no need to rush into buying the whole range of the perfect budding jeweler, but to look at which type you are dealing with.

  • The clipped back opens using the watchmaker's knife: Be careful, however, these backs can be difficult to close and to avoid damaging your timepiece when replacing its battery, you will need a special press which allows you to Apply well-distributed pressure so as not to break the glass on the dial of your little clock.
  • The screwed bottom opens with a key: Not too difficult here, except that you have to carefully check the diameter and width of the notches and the correct positioning of the tool, otherwise a scratch is arrived quickly.
  • The independent screw bottom : All you need to do is have a quality screwdriver of the right size so as not to risk damaging the screw head, which is often very thin and delicate.

To replace your watch battery safely and without the risk of damaging your object during the operation, follow this carefully:

  1. Avoid placing your fingers on the movements of the watch as much as possible.
  2. Make sure to reposition the “socket ring” (“fitting circle”) before closing the bottom of the case.
  3. Check the condition of the seal and remember to reposition it properly. If you have the slightest doubt about it, go to your watchmaker to have a professional opinion . A liquid enters the case and time freezes.


Change your battery yourself in a few steps

  • Open the box: depending on the type of box identified, you will have to unscrew using an adjustable wrench or a good quality screwdriver, or unclip using the knife. Locate the slots carefully to correctly place your tool.
  • Once the watch is opened, use tweezers and remove the casing circle before replacing the battery in your watch with an identical battery. Be sure to identify the poles of the “+” and “-” stack. It must be similar at all levels: component, size and voltage.
      There are 3 types of battery: silver oxide battery, alkaline battery and lithium battery.
        • Silver oxide batteries can be recognized by the letter S engraved on them. This type of battery provides a voltage of 1.55 Volts.
        • Alkaline batteries are similar to silver oxide batteries. Annotated by the letter L, they deliver a voltage of 1.50 Volt.
        • Lithium batteries found on many analog watches are engraved with the letter C and provide a voltage of 3 Volts.

      Finally, the diameter of a battery differs from one watch to another. So take care to identify the one that corresponds to your tocante model.

      Certain watches with screwed or clipped backs has a tab that keeps the battery in place. Don't panic, it can be easily removed with your fingers or tweezers, all you have to do is act like a lever to avoid seeing your tongue suddenly fly away.

      The last step of this tutorial consists of closing your watch by replacing the back cover. For that :

      • On the back of the watch, locate the notch in the strapping at the level of the crown stem and replace the casing ring.

      Also be aware that not all batteries are equal. The functionalities of your watch (alarm clock, stopwatch, etc.) impact the life of your battery.

      Want to know more about your watches? Take a quick look at our article which deals with differences between automatic watches and quartz watches .