Movement maintenance

Balco watch movements can be divided into two categories: mechanical movements and quartz movements. No matter what kind of movement it uses, a high-quality watch needs meticulous care and maintenance.

Time errors
The accuracy of time varies according to the type of watch movement used. For mechanical watches, the international standard is ± 30 sec / day, which is within the normal range; quartz watches are more precise, the international standard is ± 15 seconds / month, which is within the normal range.
Other factors that lead to time errors in mechanical watches: power shortage, magnetisation, shock and vibration, location changes, temperature changes, swing amplitude, the need for maintenance and other factors will cause time errors or inaccuracies.
Other factors that lead to quartz watch time errors: power shortage, magnetisation, temperature changes, component parameters change and other factors will lead to time errors.

In our daily lives, the magnetic fields we encounter most often originate from the invisible forces of permanent magnets that attract iron objects and interact with other magnets through attraction or repulsion with each other. In modern technology, the magnetic field is very widely used. We therefore recommend that you try to avoid getting your watch close to any magnetic field, such as an electrical appliance that generates magnetic fields, or objects with magnetic fields, because doing so may cause time errors or even a complete stop of your watch. Computers, microwave ovens, audio systems, magnetic buckles, electric mah-jong machines, card readers for car park access and so on, are examples of objects which are more likely to magnetise your watch.
Mechanical watches: If the mechanical watch is magnetised, the time kept will be inaccurate: in most cases the hands will turn very quickly but in some cases they simply stop. This is a common occurrence if your watch is magnetised. There is no cause for worry if your mechanical watch is magnetised. Visit Balco’s authorised repair centre for degaussing, tuning and observation.
Quartz watches: If the watch is interfered with by a magnetic field, the time it keeps will be inaccurate: in most cases the hands turn very quickly. As soon as a quartz watch leaves the magnetic field, it can demagnetise itself, but the error caused by the magnetic field will require manual adjustment.

Shock and vibration
A watch movement is complex in structure, with many parts packed tightly inside. Avoid wearing a watch when engaging in sports. Avoid “soft impacts” such as casually tossing the watch on the bed or sofa (even though there will be no marks on the outer appearance of the watch). Avoid collisions or being hit, spinning and shaking etc., as these may affect or even damage the movement, causing displacement or deformation of parts, or causing the parts to come loose and damaged, leading to timekeeping problems.

Lubricant maintenance
Mechanical watches: Mechanical watches are operated by gears and inside the movement, the parts and gears are very complex, often with more than 200 parts. Their tens of thousands of revolutions per day rely on the trace amount of lubricant inside the movement to reduce wear and tear. Once the lubricant has dried up or forms greasy dirt, the axels will then start to wear and tear. In order to avoid timekeeping inaccuracies or mechanical damage, regular maintenance to take care of the lubricant is necessary. This is recommended every three to five years.

Quartz watches: After several years of operation, there will be aging of the circuit, wear and tear to mechanical parts, a decline in the amount of lubrication, as well as the formation of sludge. This will result in increased power consumption, with power consumption noticeably fast. Even when an original battery has been used, the lifespan of the watch will nonetheless be greatly reduced. Therefore, when a quartz watch has been in use for a certain number of years, it should be cleaned and given proper maintenance. In some cases, replacement of mechanical parts or circuit components is necessary.

Recommendations for wear
Fully automatic mechanical watches usually require normal wear for eight to 10 hours a day to generate power for normal operation of the watch. “Normal wear” means the wrist moves often, which leads to the movement of the rotor. If the wrist is in a stationary state or has only occasional slight movements, this is not regarded as normal wear.
Fully automatic mechanical watches require sufficient wrist movement to wind up. If the watch is not worn or if there is not enough wrist movement, the time kept will be inaccurate, or the hands will stop. In the latter case, manually wind up the watch (generally 30-60 revolutions) before wearing. If the mechanical watch is not to be worn for a long period of time, it should be wound up at least once a month to prevent the lubricant from solidifying and to maintain the sound operation of watch parts.
The battery in quartz watches is a consumable, which should be replaced about every two years. If the watch is not to be worn for a long period of time, visit Balco authorised repair centres and have the battery removed to avoid leakage from the battery that will damage the movement; or if the watch runs slowly or when the second hand jumps only once every four seconds, this means the watch is low in energy and the battery is nearly dead. The battery should be replaced immediately. Delayed replacement may cause damage to the parts.