The majority of the population uses or own a watch. Whether it’s a vintage Rolex, a rare Patek or just a simple, brand-less watch from China, it is essential to keep your timepiece in tip-top shape. Here are some tips on how to maintain your watches properly.
Store it in the right place
Moisture, dust, pressure, and magnet are the main enemies of watches. They are not called the “Four Horsemen of Watch Apocalypse” for nothing. Find a dry place with controlled temperature to store your watches. Humidity can quickly get inside your watches and messes with the gears and springs and eventually will lead to rust. You should also avoid storing your watches with intense lighting. Constant exposure to light can cause aging even for watches. For example, a black colored dial can change to dark brown if exposed to too much light.
Get insurance for all the valuable items
Brands like Patek Philippe, Rolex, Hublot or Tag Heuer costs a fortune. Only 5% of the population (give or take) can afford these luxury items. Most of these watches costs at least $50,000 and up. Imagine an uninsured item that costs that much just sitting in your living room. It would be a waste of money if you lost that piece of jewelry. We usually get insurance for big items like cars and houses, but we typically take for granted jewelry like watches, rings, and necklaces. Most of these jewelry costs more than most cars and even houses, and jewelry is the number one target of thieves. With this in mind, we should always consider buying an insurance policy for our jewelry or store it in a safe place like a personal safe or bank vaults. To add extra protection, you can list all the serial numbers and take photographs of your watches. Insurance companies will ask for serial numbers anyways, so you have to do it if you want to get insurance for your watches.
Do you need all the expensive watches?
Gold Rolex, Frederique Constant watches, Patek Philippe, Seiko, Citizen, and Fossil. These watches tell time, but some of them cost $10,000 and some only costs $100. They are all the same, watches. Brand doesn’t matter unless you are a watch collector or an aficionado. Age is also a factor that that determines how people choose a watch. Teenagers (Age 15-20) prefers a fashionable watch over craftsmanship. As long as it is fashionable even if it is inexpensive, they will wear it. Early to late 20’s people prefers functional watches, an all in one device. A watch with calendar, weather update, tells time in two places and very durable. People ages 30-50 are more about the craftsmanship and the brand. These are the people who buy ridiculous priced watches since most of them have high paying jobs and can easily afford it. Older people ages 60 and up don’t usually mind how much their watches worth, or they don’t care anymore at all.
Watches need maintenance every 2 or 3 years. You can find a good watch repair shop near your area and have your watch cleaned. Experts suggest watches that are used every day should be checked by repairmen at least once in two years. Chronographs and other complicated watches may require a frequent visit to the shop since these kinds of timepieces need more attention compared to vintage pi. Established manufacturers like Rolex or Patek can offer their buyers free in-house maintenance services for their watches as long as they cover the shipping fee back to the manufacturer. The easiest and safest way of maintaining your watches is to look for the nearest repair shop that the manufacturer certifies.
Open communication with the manufacturer
Watch experts suggest that manufacturers and buyers should always have good open communication at all times, even the manufacturer’s certified repair shops. There are times that you have some requests before you let the manufacturers or the repair shops do the maintenance like parts replacements or polishing. To avoid further damage, you should contact the manufacturer or the shop for any previous damages. Damage caused during the repair can lower the value of your watch, if you are a collector, this is heartbreaking. Collectors tend to be more protective with their watches since it is a costly piece of jewelry.
Where to go if you want your watch polished?
Maintaining the value of your watch is your number one priority if you are a watch collector. It is imperative to find the best watchmaker that can do the polishing for your watch. A good watchmaker will always ask their clients about their preferences. Does the client want to retain the original appearance? Do they want it to shine like a diamond? The client should answer these questions before giving the watch for polishing. Most collectors want their watch almost untouched since the price will go down if there is a difference from the original piece. Some users don’t care if the price drops as long as the watch is as shiny as a diamond. Retouching a watch is not advisable if it is a collector’s item. Reduced value is any collector’s worst nightmare. Watchmakers remind collectors and buyers that if you are polishing, the most affected part of the watch is the casing or the outside of the watch. According to experts, it is vital for timepieces to be in their original finish to retain their value. The technician often tells owners not to polish their watches even if it is full of scratches and nicks. Polishing can also cause uneven lugs which are not appealing.
Dials and Bezels maintenance
The value of the watch resides primarily in the dials and bezels of the watch. It is essential to keep the dials and bezels in its original form, at all cost. Most watches from the 30’s to 50’s just like the Swiss Super-LumiNova has dials painted with radium for luminosity. These watches are often shipped back to the manufacturers in Switzerland for repair; the problem is manufacturers in Switzerland can’t send it back to the owners due to customs regulation. So the only way for you to get your watch repainted with radium is to personally go to Switzerland and hand deliver the watch to the manufacturers.