How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?
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  1. #1
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    How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    I ask this question because I have many quartz watches that I wear on rotation and it can be many months before I get to wear all of them. This means that their batteries could become spent in that time and I wouldn't know about it for many months. This means that those watches that have spent batteries in them would be vulnerable to the effects of battery decay and leakage.

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    Member joepac's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by orian View Post
    How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    I ask this question because I have many quartz watches that I wear on rotation and it can be many months before I get to wear all of them. This means that their batteries could become spent in that time and I wouldn't know about it for many months. This means that those watches that have spent batteries in them would be vulnerable to the effects of battery decay and leakage.
    I check my quartz watches now and once they stop working I either change the battery or take out the battery.

    Had a Gucci 3800m chrono get utterly destroyed due to the corrosion of the battery left in for a few years after it died. I'm trying to restore it now. Lesson learned.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G891A using Tapatalk
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  3. #3
    Moderator Public Forum John MS's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by orian View Post
    How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    I ask this question because I have many quartz watches that I wear on rotation and it can be many months before I get to wear all of them. This means that their batteries could become spent in that time and I wouldn't know about it for many months. This means that those watches that have spent batteries in them would be vulnerable to the effects of battery decay and leakage.
    Unfortunately there is no way to predict when a dead battery might leak.
    It would be a good idea to check all your watches on a regular basis. Just put a reminder in your phone calendar to look at all your watches once a month or every other month. Then just swap the dead batteries out.

    If there are some watches that never get worn just remove the battery.

    If you haven't build an inventory of your watches that identifies the battery.

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    Member Stoshman's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Since the average cost for a battery change is $10-12, how much sense does it make to risk ruining your watches by not doing it right away?

    Or, you could invest $15-20 for an assortment of case openers and do it yourself for an average battery bulk price of 10 to 50 cents.
    Last edited by Stoshman; August 25th, 2018 at 02:07.
    Some days it's just not worth chewing through the restraints

  6. #5
    Member sticky's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Like John says there’s no way of telling how quickly a battery will start to leak when its flat but generally speaking the better quality ones will last longest. If we’re only talking a few months with a potential flat battery you should be O.K. but hoik it out ASAP when you notice that it’s deceased.

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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Maybe someone will do a study on this.

  8. #7
    Member HereComesTheBOOM's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    I've had them leaking before they even went flat and I had them remain integrity for well over a decade after they died, there's just no way to predict this I'm afraid.

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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    If you have a lot of quartz, it would be economical to try to learn how to change them yourself.
    joepac likes this.

  10. #9
    Member J.D.B.'s Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    Quote Originally Posted by HereComesTheBOOM View Post
    I've had them leaking before they even went flat and I had them remain integrity for well over a decade after they died, there's just no way to predict this I'm afraid.
    This ^^^

    I manage a decent-size collection of quartz. Leaks are rare but they DO happen. I've not had a leaker before it was dead (as posted above). The leaking I HAVE encountered was dead cells over a year from death. I've never seen a dead lithium cell leak.
    Thank you, I'm flattered, but, please don't click any "Likes" for me (unless there's a prize for "most likes")?

  11. #10
    Member TwentiethCenturyFox's Avatar
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    Re: How long can a spent battery be kept in a watch before it starts to decay and leak?

    My biggest issue is finding a cool used watch that is 30+ years old and you have no idea how long the battery has been in the watch. If it is a dry environment it seems to be less of a concern.

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