A Rolex has over 200 moving parts that come together to create an intricate, precise work of art. You don’t have to know how every single part of your Rolex works, but you should at least know how to set a Rolex watch.
Setting a Rolex is how you change the time and date displayed on the watch. It’s simple — with a few twists and turns of the right piece, you can take care of your watch and keep it accurate without making a trip to your local jeweler.
How to Set a Rolex
1. Unscrew the small circular dial on the side of your Rolex, which is called the crown. It will turn counterclockwise.
2. After unscrewing the crown, pull it all the way out. Rolexes have two or three crown positions that control different elements of the watch. Usually the first position winds the watch, the second position lets you change the day and date and the third position changes the position of the hour and minute hands. Start in the third (and farthest) position to change the time, then work your way in.
3. Rotate the screw clockwise until the hands display the correct time.
4. If you need to adjust the date, push the crown in slightly until it reaches second position and rotate clockwise.
5. Once the watch is displaying the correct time and date, push the crown back into the base of the watch and screw it in place. It’s important to fully tighten the screw because the crown’s seal is what makes a Rolex waterproof.
When to Set a Rolex
When you need to change the date or time on a Rolex, you must set it. All watches must be set at least twice a year when the clock changes for daylight savings time.
Although the crown functions the same on all Rolex models, not all Rolex models can be set the same way. For some models, including women’s Rolex watches, the dial has to be turned counterclockwise.
Things to Remember
- If your watch must be wound, remember to wind it before you set it. Winding keeps a mechanical watch running. Most watches today run on batteries, and don’t require winding. But if you own a vintage watch, remember that if you set the watch before winding it, the time and date will change.
- For more help understanding the parts of your watch, check Diamond Banc’s glossary of terms for every watch owner.
- If you’re not sure how to set your watch or need help, bring it in to a local watch shop or jeweler for a quick lesson.
Interested in selling your Rolex watch? Diamond Banc buys lightly worn and vintage Rolex watches from the public for incredible prices.
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