Now, if you’re amid watch enthusiasts/ collectors, like ourselves at Lux Horology, you’ll know there’s always that question of “How long will my watch last?”. And it’s a hard question to answer and no one will truly always have the answer – but we’re here to answer the question of “How long do mechanical watches last”.
The simple answer is, we don’t know. I mean we do know roughly how long they last, but each individual watch has a different owner, environment and many other factors which play into it’s longevity and durability. Let’s get right into it.
HOW LONG DO MECHANICAL WATCHES LAST FOR?
The answer is lifetimes, your mechanical watch has the ability to last for decades upon decades, and even surpassing centuries. It all depends on the owner of the watch, and how well they take care of it.
This includes things such as servicing the watch, cleaning the watch yourself, and just being considerate and careful of the watch throughout it’s life. Carrying out a service on your watch between 4-6 years is recommended by a lot of watchmakers, but sometimes it’s not necessary. However this number does vary, as Rolex says you should service their watches “Every 10 years depending on the model and real-life usage.” Now obviously that’s targeted towards specific Rolex owners, but it’s still food for thought.
With all this being said, the answer to the question “How long do mechanical watches last for?”. Is that it’s really up to you, how long it lasts for, but if you’re a great owner then the watch could last longer than your lifetime.
DO MORE EXPENSIVE MECHANICAL WATCHES LAST LONGER THAN CHEAPER ONES?
Sometimes more expensive watch movements tend to last longer than cheaper ones, and this is down to the fact that you’re paying more for a better service/ product essentially – which is correct. But just because you’re paying more, it doesn’t always mean that your watch is going to last longer, and this is because more expensive watch movements usually have a higher frequency of Vph (Vibrations per hour).
This higher running frequency causes for more wear and tear, as well as more components to be used, which in turn increases the likelihood of adjustments needing to be made etc. But it’s not all doom and gloom, as the more complex and expensive movements are likely to be of higher quality too, so in the long-run the components it holds will be more durable and reliable, allowing you to enjoy your watch for a little bit longer than everyone else… if you treat it right, of course.
WHAT’S THE BIGGEST THREAT FOR A WATCH MOVEMENT?
The biggest threat for a mechanical watch movement, is yourself or is it?. Now this is pretty obvious, as the watch movement would be far better off without the knocks and bangs, and all the other potential damaging factors a human might be able to cause. But in actual fact, that’s the purpose of the watch right? To be worn – we all know that, so the main threat for a watch movement is WATER.
Water is the worst thing which can happen to your movement, as it damages metal components, and causes rust to occur, but it also causes slippages, and wear and tear to be increased. This is as the lubrication which was once present, is now not as effective.
Ways to avoid water damage to your watch movement:
– Don’t go near water… but that’s no fun.
– Don’t use pushers nor the crown underwater – instead use uni-directional bezel.
– Don’t shower with your watch on.
– Don’t use your watch in water temperatures above 80 degrees.
– Keep gaskets in proper order.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR WATCH LIVE LONGER?
Now, if you read the above sub-headings, you would’ve heard about some of the negative effects in which certain actions or environments can have on your watch movement – so we thought we’d do a little overview, of some of the things which can save your watch movement and make it last a little bit longer.
1. Keep your watch in good order
Keeping your watch in good nick is incredibly important. This means regularly cleaning it with water, when appropriate. Not only is this step important for the health of your watch, but it also just makes the watch look newer and allows it to stand out more.
This also includes things such as trying not to knock the watch on doors, walls etc. as we have all been there when the panic sets in and we’re scanning the glass to see if there are any scratches, and it’s just an annoyance and something which can be easily avoided. So that’s something to consider when wearing your watch too.
As we said, this step is subjective to you, and how you treat your watch, but do what you think is right for the watch and well-being of the movement etc.
2. Service your watch as recommended
Servicing your watch is one of the most important aspects when it comes to the longevity of the watches lifespan. As a watch service can make all the difference – even adding a few more years on to it’s life. It allows for wear and tear to be decreased and for the components inside to be almost relieved from any tension, increasing the durability and reliability of your watch movement.
Follow these two steps and your watch journey will be much the wiser. Anyway, we hope you have taken something away from this article and can use it in the real world. For now, we’ll see you in the next post… Check this article out on The 8 Best Fabric Strap Watches to buy 2021.