How to Wind a Rolex Watch? (properly)

How do you wind a Rolex Watch?

The best way to wind a Rolex is to wear it. For about the last 20 years all Rolex have had automatic movements. This means that they wind themselves while you are wearing them. Take a look at our other post that goes into detail about automatic watches. However, manually winding a Rolex is a very straightforward process.

All Rolex models have a screw down winding crown. This offers excellent resistance to water ingress.

  • Unscrew the winding crown in a counter clockwise direction.
  • Once unscrewed, the first position will allow you to wind the watch by turning the crown clockwise.Perhaps 20 or 25 turns will give the movement a full wind from stopped. You cannot over wind the watch. Excess charge is discarded via a clutch-like mechanism. This will have no detrimental impact on the watch movement.
  • You can pull out the winding crown further to set different functions on the watch. Depending which functions the watch features, there will be 2 or 3 further positions.
  • Once wound and set, press the crown in gently and wind clockwise until you feel resistance. This is when the crown is secure and water tight once more.

Do you need to manually wind a Rolex watch?

The steps above show you how to wind a Rolex manually. However, as also mentioned previously, Rolex house automatic movements in all their watches these days. This means that if you wear your watch daily, you should never need to wind it. Should you take it off, and the power depletes, you will need to wind it up. Generally a Rolex may stay charged for approximately 3 days without wearing it.

How often should I wind my Rolex?

We recommend keeping your Rolex wound all the time. If you wear your Rolex daily it is unlikely that you will need to wind it manually at all. However if you wear it in a rotation with other watches or you take it off for work then it’s power reserve will deplete. Given that most Rolex will run for around 70 hours on the power reserve, we would recommend a top up wind – just to be sure – after a couple of days of not wearing.

How long does a Rolex wind last?

A full wind on a Rolex – around 30 full turns of the crown – should fully charge the mainspring, this will give around 70 hours or 3 days of power to the watch.

Should you use an automatic watch winder on your Rolex?

An automatic watch winder is a superb option for keeping your Rolex wound when not in use. Some people may have more than one watch or even a collection. This is when watch winders are essential for keeping your Rolex ticking. We have the widest range of watch winders in the UK and only stock the best brands. All our watch winders are perfectly suitable for Rolex watches.

Can over-winding damage a Rolex?

In short, no. You cannot over wind a Rolex. All the Perpetual models have built in slip gear or clutch type mechanism built in. This prevents any excess energy from reaching the mainspring. 

How should you store your Rolex if you won’t be wearing it for an extended period?

We recommend any automatic watch is stored in a watch winder when not in use. Watch winders offer a great display option and also keep your Rolex wound for the next time you need it. You can discover our wide range of units here. Resetting complications such as day-date, dual time zones and moon-phase features can be time consuming. Should you prefer, a watch box is a great storage option if not wearing for shorter periods of time. View our selection here.

Do different Rolex models have different winding mechanisms?

All Rolex automatic movements are based around the same principle. A rotor acts like a pendulum, charges a spring that powers the movement. However, Rolex produce a number of movements that provide different functions. These can include, time, date, GMT, chronograph and Day-Date to mention but a few. But the winding process is the same. For example, wear the watch and generate the power OR manually wind the watch as described above. Again, all Rolex watches can be kept wound and stored in a watch winder.

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