How To Change A Watch Battery: Step-By-Step Guide

How To Change A Watch Battery: Step-By-Step Guide 2018-06-12T23:35:51+00:00

Although I love my mechanical watches, I do own a few quartz movements as well. Occasionally, they require a new battery. Instead of taking a trip to the mall / jewelers, and paying $15-25 to get it replaced, I’m going to show you how to do in a couple of minutes and for a fraction of the cost.

Watch and tools to replace battery

What You Need To Change A Watch Battery

  1. Watch case opener – $2 with free shipping on Amazon (or knife, but be very careful!)
  2. Replacement battery – $3 for FIVE Energizer batteries with free shipping off Amazon

That’s it!

The Cost & Time

So for a grand total of $5 you have all the tools needed to replace batteries for five watches, and each one will only take a few minutes to replace! Sounds like a pretty good deal to me.

Watch Battery Replacement Steps

 Step 1 – Take the Watch Back Off

Watch with opening tools

There’s usually a lip around one small section of the case’s back that makes it easier to “pop” the back off. I like to use the “correct” tool for the job, and the yellow handled tool makes it a breeze. It’s safer, too. If you can’t wait / don’t want to buy one, you can use a knife but be very careful!

TIP: When buying from Amazon, search for “& Free Shipping” as well as “Fulfilled By Amazon”, as you’ll typically get the items MUCH FASTER. If time is not an issue, I have never had any issue with non Amazon sellers (just an example), but you may have to wait up to one to three weeks. 

If your watch back has square notches around the edge, this usually means it’s a screw back and you will need a different tool. Again this can be found on Amazon for just a few dollars, search “Watch Back Wrench” or “Watch Opener Screw Wrench“.

Step 2 – Remove The Old Watch Battery

Removing a watch battery with tweezers Once the back is off, carefully remove the battery. There may be a small holding clip on top of the battery, as shown on the right above, so you will need to move that to the side. You can remove the battery with a small knife, or tweezers as I have done here.

What Size Battery To Buy?

Most modern quartz movements will use a “377” battery. You can buy them here from Amazon.

I have only ever seen one different size battery, in a Gucci watch I inherited, but that was made in the 80’s. So if you think your quartz watch may be quite old, check the battery before you buy (it will be stamped on the battery itself in 99% of cases. If it’s not, measure the battery and buy the corresponding type).

Step 3 – Install New Watch Battery

Watch battery being placed into movementSimply put the new battery into place, and make sure the small holding clip is back in position (right picture above).

Step 4 – Replace Watch Case Back & Enjoy!

Men's quartz watch from and back view

Simpy replace the case back (usually you’ll hear a “snap”), and you’re good to go!

Read more of our watch related articles

Please Note: some of the links in this post are affiliate links.