How To clean a Pocket Watch

How To clean a Pocket Watch

Do you own a pocket watch? You want to clean it, but you don't know how to do it? Would you like to know the right methods to give it a new shine?

Then welcome to Vintage Pocket Watch. We are specialists in this field and know exactly how to help you!

If your watch is waterproof, simply clean it with a soft toothbrush and a little soapy water. Then brush it gently in a circular motion and rinse it with clear water. If your watch is not waterproof, a damp microfiber cloth will suffice to restore its shine.

In this article, you will discover :

• Our methods for effectively cleaning your watch,
• All the precautions to take in order not to damage it,
• How to save your money.

After reading this article, cleaning your timepiece will no longer hold any secrets for you!  You will know exactly how to do it yourself and save your money.

Are you ready ? Then let's find out together right now. 


Vintage Pocket Watch Gentleman


How to Maintain a Pocket Watch 

Before going directly into the heart of the matter, it is important to set the basics, to understand what we are going to talk about.

Our goal is to give you the knowledge you need to clean and maintain your watch yourself. This will allow you to do without a professional and take care of your wallet.

What Products and tools are needed ? 

• Soapy water (dishwashing liquid, Marseille soap, black soap),
• A dab of toothpaste (polishing paste),
• Microfiber cloths,
• Clear water.

1.1 Cleaning a Waterproof Pocket Watch


 If your pocket watch is waterproof, then this part concerns you in particular. Do not hesitate to follow step by step the methodology, in order to remove the dirt, residues and dust that may have accumulated over time.

• The procedure to follow:

• In a container, pour warm water with soap (dishwashing liquid),
• Moisten your toothbrush and gently brush your watch in a circular motion,
• Rinse with cold water (indirectly), using the brush that you have also rinsed,
• Dry it with a chamois, not abrasive.

*Make sure that the crown of your mechanical watch is in its initial position (at its lowest point), so that water does not enter the case and damage the movement.

1.2 Cleaning a Non-Waterpoof Pocket Watch


 Before you start, make sure you do not put your watch directly under water. This could cause irreversible damage to your watch movement. Whether it is powered by a mechanical movement or a quartz movement.

The procedure to follow :

• Use a damp cloth (lightly) and circular motions to clean the surface of your watch's stainless steel case,
• You can also use a soft bristle brush (still slightly damp) to remove stubborn dirt,
• Use a microfiber cleaning cloth again to finish the cleaning,
• Finally, carefully wipe your pocket watch with a soft, dry absorbent cloth.

1.3 How to clean a Pocket Watch dial ?


Pocket Watch Dial

To effectively clean the dial of your watch, simply use the toothpaste that you find in your bathroom.

Indeed, as a renovator, toothpaste is very effective to allow you to clean and remove any small scratches that have formed over time.

The procedure to follow:

• Apply a dab of toothpaste on a soft cloth,
• Use clockwise or counterclockwise motions. The goal is not to rub in the same place (toothpaste is a soft abrasive and you risk scratching the glass).
• Remove the toothpaste and with a slightly dampened cloth, remove the rest of the paw.
• Then, with a clean dry cloth, finish the polishing to make the glass shine.

*Be sure to apply the tab only to the glass of your watch. Some materials may not react well to the treatment.

Vintage Pocket Watch Gentleman


Can you clean the mechanism of a Pocket Watch ?

Clean the mechanism of a Pocket Watch

It is quite possible to disassemble your watch, but cleaning the mechanism is a delicate operation and you could damage the movement of your timepiece.

For this, it would be better to let the watchmaker near you do it.


Take care of your Pocket Watch. Our recommendation  

Anti Scratch Pocket Watch

Taking care of your watch on a daily basis and with simple gestures will allow you to enjoy it for many years to come. So, here is our list of precautions that we advise you to take:

     1- Avoid temperature variations: a series of temperature variations can prematurely weaken the glass of your watch face. As well as too long an exposure to the sun.
     2- Avoid any contact with chemicals: indeed, some chemicals (perfume, solvent, detergent, cleaning product, etc.), can deteriorate and discolor your pocket watch.
     3- To avoid scratches, wear your pocket watch alone in your pocket, without other objects that could damage it.
For a better life span, have your watch checked by a watchmaker every 3 to 4 years, especially if it is waterproof.

The last words of the Vintage Pocket Watch's Team


As you can see, cleaning and maintaining your watch is a piece of cake!

Now, with all the information we have given you in this tutorial, you are now ready to effectively clean your pocket watch and why not, those of your loved ones (you'll make people happy)!

Note that these methods work for both pocket watches and wristwatches!

Finally, if you still have questions or points that you would like to clarify, do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to help you.

See you soon,
The Vintage Pocket Watch Team


Vintage Pocket Watch Gentleman