Whether you have a quartz, solar, or smartwatch, it’s important to know how long you’ll be able to use it before having to replace or charge the battery.
In most cases, a watch battery lasts anywhere from 2-6 years. This can vary depending on the brand, and how you use your watch. Using more power-intensive features, such as apps on a smartwatch, or a chronograph on an analog watch, will drain the watch faster.
In this post, we will compare the battery life of different brands and answer some common questions about getting it replaced once the battery finally dies.
The table below outlines the battery life of some of the most common battery-powered watch brands.
|Brand||Watch Battery||Battery Life|
|Apple||542mAh battery (for the Apple Watch Ultra)||Up to 3 years|
|Seiko||371 (SR920SW), 377 (SR626SW), and 303/357||4-6 years|
|Timex||CR1216, CR2032, CR2016||2-5 years|
|Casio||SR927SW, CTL920, SR626SW, ML2016, SR920W, MT621 and others||~10 years|
|G-Shock||CR1616, CR2016, CLB3032, CR1025, CTL1616, CR2032, CR2025 and others||5-6 years|
|Garmin||Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries||Up to 3 years|
|Fossil||CR2430, 370/371, 377, 364||Up to 2 years|
How Long Do Apple Watch Batteries Last?
The Apple Watch Ultra gives you up to 60 hours of battery in Low Power Mode with the right configuration. If you are calling, listening to music, or using other features such as wi-fi or Bluetooth, the battery life will drain quicker. The battery life might also be lower in older models as well.
If you’re looking for some tips on extending its battery life, check out the video below.
After as many as 1,000 charge cycles, an Apple Watch Battery still has as much as 80% of its maximum capacity. That means that depending on your habits, you should be able to go anywhere from two and a half to three years between battery replacements.
How Long Do Garmin Watch Batteries Last?
Garmin batteries can run much longer than similar watches on a single charge. On average, a Garmin can run for at least a week, up to 50 days on a single charge. Most people charge it once or twice a week.
If you’re looking for a few tips on extending the battery life of your Garmin Instinct or similar, check out the video below.
Garmin states that with frequent charging and discharging, the batteries will retain about 80% of their original capacity after just a few years, similar to what you can expect from an Apple Watch. Many users have reported that they have been able to receive free battery replacements from Garmin once their battery life began to diminish.
How Long Does a Seiko Watch Battery Last?
It is typical for Seiko watch batteries to last about 4-6 years.
The most common batteries for Seiko watches are 371 (SR920SW), 377 (SR626SW), and 303/357 (SR44SW/SR44W).
For Seiko solar watches, the charge time can range between 3 minutes and 4 hours, depending on the intensity of the light available to charge it throughout the day.
How Long Does a Timex Watch Battery Last?
You should be able to get around 2-5 years of life out of your Timex battery before you have to replace it.
Examples of common Timex batteries include CR1216, CR2032, and CR2016.
How Long Do Fossil Watch Batteries Last?
Fossil watch batteries do not last for very long. Fossil itself states that you can expect around 2 years for batteries in the brand’s quartz watches.
Fossil says that most of its hybrid watches use the CR2430 battery. Most other quartz Fossil watches contain 370/371, 377, or 364 batteries.
How Long Do Casio Watch Batteries Last?
Casio watch batteries have an excellent reputation for lasting especially long. It is common for a Casio watch battery to last for a decade before needing replacement. Of course, depending on the features you use often, it could be less.
In some cases, Casio batteries may even last longer than 10 years. Casio solar watch batteries in particular may outlast a decade by quite a margin.
SR927SW, CTL920, SR626SW, ML2016, SR920W, and MT621 are just a few examples of batteries that are common in Casio watches.
How Long Does a G-Shock Battery Last?
On average, you should expect around 5-6 years before needing a replacement.
We have seen a pretty wide range of how long a G-Shock battery can last. This is likely due to the variety of quartz movements, and complications used, across different G-Shock models.
On the lower end, users have reported their G-Shocks last just a couple of years. On the upper end, some sources say up to 15 years. Regular use of the alarm or backlight will shorten the battery life.
Some common batteries included in the G-Shock are CR1616, CR2016, CLB3032, CR1025, CTL1616, CR2032, and CR2025.
How Long Do Smart Watch Batteries Last?
Smartwatch batteries usually last for up to several years before you have to replace them. How you use your watch will impact the battery life.
On a single charge, most smartwatch batteries last half a day to a couple of days before you need to charge them. Again, how much time you get depends on usage. Some smartwatches run longer on a single charge than others. Particularly, Garmin smartwatches tend to run much longer than Apple Watches on a single charge.
How Long Does a Quartz Battery Last?
The battery life of a quartz watch depends on the particular watch and the battery used. As mentioned earlier, Fossil quartz watches tend to have a low battery life of around ~2 years, while other brands like Casio can last for up to a decade!
On average, most quartz batteries last around 3 years.
How Long Do Watch Batteries Last in Storage?
How long watch batteries last in storage depends on the type of battery.
Lithium batteries have the longest shelf-life and can last for up to a decade in storage. Alkaline batteries may last for about 5 years.
Lithium-ion and silver-oxide batteries both have a shelf life of about 3 years.
A zinc watch battery’s shelf life is about 2 years.
How Do I Know if My Watch Battery Needs to be Replaced?
If your watch battery runs out completely, your watch will stop functioning altogether. However, if the battery is running low, it might have a few signs that inform you the battery is nearly depleted. For example:
- The second hand slows down
- The second hand jumps every couple of seconds
- The watch begins to lose accuracy
Some watches, such as various smartwatches and Seiko Kinetic watches even have power indicators that show you the current battery level.
How Do You Get a Watch Battery Replaced?
It is suggested to have a watch battery replaced by a reputable watchmaker or the watch manufacturer’s service center. in fact, some watches, like Garmins, must have their batteries replaced by the brand.
In many cases, however, it is possible to replace your watch battery on your own. Here is a basic step-by-step for replacing a watch battery:
- Take off the watch back.
- Remove any rubber gaskets.
- Use tweezers to remove the battery.
- Insert the new battery.
- Look at the hands to see if they are back in motion.
- If the hands are moving, clean the gasket, put it back on, and close the watch back.
How Much Does it Cost to Change a Watch Battery?
If you are replacing a watch battery yourself, the only expense is the battery itself and any tools you buy. If you bring the watch to a professional, you will pay anywhere from about $5-$20 for common battery replacements. For more expensive watches and batteries, the costs could exceed $50, or even $100.
Some brands, such as Garmin, replace the battery for free as long as you send it to their designated service centers.
What Brand of Watch Batteries Lasts the Longest?
One name you will see time and again for quality, long-lasting watch batteries are Renata. Renata is a subsidiary of the Swatch Group, and is often used in quartz watches from luxury brands such as Rolex, Breitling, and TAG Heuer. They’re Swiss-Made and have a low failure rate (less than 1%) and typically last around 3 years.
Other watch battery brands to consider include Maxwell, Varta, Energizer, and Sony.
Can a Watch Battery Last 10 Years?
Yes, a watch battery can sometimes last for up to 10 years, or even longer. Casio watches in particular are well-known for running for years without needing to change the battery. The type of battery and the complications of the watch can both impact its lifespan.
Does a Quartz Watch Need a Battery to Run?
Yes, a quartz watch does require a battery to run.
Is There Any Way to Make a Watch Battery Last Longer?
If you want to extend the lifespan of your watch battery, avoid using functions that drain a lot of power. For instance, in the case of watches with a backlight, or a chronograph, use them more sparingly. In some analog watches, you can pull the crown out to “hack” the watch, A.K.A. stop the watch from running when you are not using it for long periods of time.
Are There Any Watches That Don’t Need Batteries?
Yes, a mechanical watch does not need a battery. Instead, it stores power in the mainspring, which is powered by winding it. There are two types of mechanical watches: automatic and manual. You have to wind manual watches by hand. An automatic mechanical watch winds itself through the movement of your arm as you wear it.
In most cases, your watch’s first battery will last for anywhere from 2-6 years. After that, replacement batteries will last 1-2 years.
By being mindful of how you use your watch, you can conserve power and maximize watch battery longevity.
When it comes time to replace the battery, however, take it to a reputable watchmaker, jeweler, or the watch’s service center, as most battery replacements aren’t very expensive. You could also replace the battery yourself if you have a couple of tools, a replacement battery, and a bit of patience, though it can sometimes be more trouble than it is worth.