Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained
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  1. #1
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    Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained



    The water resistance ratings on watches confused the heck out of me when I first started getting interested in watches and shopping around, so I made this video primer. Basically:

    30 meter/ 3 bar /3 atm - Splashes, rain, hand washing, maybe brief submersion. Not recommended for showering

    50 meter / 5 bar / 5 atm - Light swimming probably ok, but not really designed for it.

    100 meter /10 bar /10 atm - Fine for swimming, snorkeling, etc. Have taken these in the shower without steam penetrating the case. For most people a watch with this rating will cover all the situations they would reasonably subject a watch to.

    200 meter / 20 bar / 20 atm - Recreational water sports, snorkeling, light diving.
    drwindsurf, Rusty427 and mclusky like this.

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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    Erm... Assuming it is new or well maintained -

    If it’s sold as a dive watch by an ISO accredited company it can be used for hours at at least the depth it is rated at. Probably much longer and deeper.

    If it isn’t a dive watch but it is still an ISO accredited company, you should expect to be able to swim and snorkel with any water resistant watch with 50m or more. And some 30m. You are 1m deep, stop worrying. In fact if it is 100m water resistant and not a dive watch you would still be fine recreationally diving with it.

    Any Swiss, German or Japanese watches you buy will be from ISO accredited companies.

    Stop worrying and enjoy your watch!

    There was a good Hodinkee article about water resistance and what it really means. If in doubt read that. It puts your mind to rest.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    drwindsurf, drobyo and mclusky like this.

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    Member yankeexpress's Avatar
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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained


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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    Quote Originally Posted by yankeexpress View Post
    Can somebody set up a macro where whenever anybody brings this sort of thing up, that link gets posted and the thread gets closed?

    I usually avoid water resistance threads but today I seem to be feeling extra grumpy... Sorry.

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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    Longines claim that a 50m WR watch is fit for swimming and snorkeling, but not for diving.

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    Member MarkieB's Avatar
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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    I wonder if car forums have similar threads "My car is certified to run on Diesel, does anyone know if this means it's OK to use Petrol instead"

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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    Quote Originally Posted by yankeexpress View Post
    That was great. Thanks for posting it.

    Back before I was sophisticated I naively assumed that "30 m water resistance" actually meant that a watch would resist water to a depth of 30 meters. Now that I'm older and wiser I know that it means the watch might flood in the middle of the Sahara desert. Isn't learning a wonderful thing?

    Back before I knew better I used to shower, swim, fish and wash dishes while wearing my cheap Timex digital. Amazingly, none of them ever died from water intrusion. The water that actually killed them all was sweat: I have very acid perspiration and it eats away the chrome plating and leaves the base metal below like a sawtooth edge. I had to buy a new watch every two years because they started sawing my wrist off...until I discovered titanium.
    yankeexpress likes this.

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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    I think I wouldn't worry about it with a cheap Casio or Timex, but I'm still not going to wear a nice dress watch in the shower, or even take a 50m WR field watch into the pool on a regular basis.

  10. #9
    Member obomomomo's Avatar
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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    Aaaurrguergamagh...!

    Posting youtube videos does not an expert make.
    X2-Elijah likes this.
    Bulova> 96B251. Casio> 5600E. Damasko> DS30. GrandSeiko> SBGH205. Rolex> 116500LN, 16710. Seiko> SARB017, SARB033, SARG007, SBDX017, SLA017, SRP777.

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    Member Alysandir's Avatar
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    Re: Guide for beginners: Water Resistance Ratings Explained

    I make sure to wear a 500m WR watch while eating hot soup. Never can be too careful. Thermal expansion and all.

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    Alysandir
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