Is the Sound My Watch is Making Normal?

Has your automatic watch been making some “unusual” sounds lately and you’re not sure whether or not to be concerned? We get a these kinds of questions a lot. It may not be a call for concern at all, depending on the exact sound you’re hearing. We understand that sound is subjective, but we’re going to do our best to provide a basis of understanding.

Let’s start with how an automatic watch or watch with automatic capabilities operates. They derive their power from an oscillating weight (also known as a rotor) that swings around and provides energy to the barrel, which is a kind of coil.

To hear the sound of the rotor rotating, first, grab your watch and tap the side against the palm of your other hand. This should get the rotor to spin a few times around. Any inconsistencies in the sound or noise you hear should be fairly evident. You can tap it a few times against your palm if you’re not quite sure the first time. If the resulting sound can be described as a “whirring” noise it is generally par for the course when it comes to Orient watch movements. Our automatic watches use a ball bearing system to drive the rotor. This results in a movement that may be “noisier” than others, but the tradeoff is the bidirectional winding ability and winding efficiency that allows for our watches to get started immediately. So, there is no need to worry if the watch is making this sound, even if it seems louder than what might be considered typical.

Now we’ll cover the sounds you shouldn’t hear from the movement. What should you keep an ear for?

1) Scraping, clunking, rattling

2) An object knocking against the case

3) A loose movement part clinking inside

If you hear any of the above noises when you tap the watch to your palm, then this is most likely a problem that needs to be addressed. In this event, please feel free to submit a service request on our website and our repair department would be happy to take a look at it for you.


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