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March 31st, 2022

How & When You Should Service Your Rolex Watch?

Service Your Rolex Watch

Rolex is a name known for its prestige, durability, and exemplary performance. However, this is also the same point that puts everyone into thinking about whether or not it is essential to carry out a servicing for the Rolex. The answer to this is a big YES!

Rolex watches require care to keep them in pristine condition like every other tangible thing. Servicing your Rolex will prevent it from any unforeseen damages and increase its value if ever you intend to sell Rolex watch in the secondary market.

According to Rolex: A typical Rolex timepiece needs servicing every ten years!

So, coming from the luxury brand itself, you now know how important this is, bringing us to our ‘most-asked’ set of questions.

1. When Should You Service Your Rolex?

As said, Rolex recommends servicing each modern timepiece after every 10 years. Even though many Rolex watches can run a little longer before, they cannot report the time. It is advisable to get your Rolex serviced to ensure that it remains in the best possible condition.

Speaking of the Vintage Rolex models and a few older models, the watches require more frequent servicing than the others. This ensures that the vintage Rolex timepieces run properly. However, one must remember that the value of a few collectable vintage Rolex watches is greatly dependent on their original components. So, servicing such watch pieces may not be a good proposal.

2. Why do Rolex Watches Need Servicing?

One of the key reasons Rolex needs servicing is that the lubricants break down over time. The key objective is to reduce friction. Several specialised lubricants are applied throughout the watch’s movement to ensure that the watch runs smoothly with little or no friction.

As the lubricants can fall off over time, it can cause an increase in friction which puts additional pressure on the other components, ultimately disrupting the optimal performance of the watch.

With time, the quality and the lubricant technology have improved. Hence, the time for which a mechanical watch functions properly has increased. Previously, the Rolex watches needed servicing every year or two. Today, the interval has increased significantly.

With contemporary movement designs and modern lubricants, the servicing tenure for a typical Rolex timepiece has increased to 10 years to assure optimum performance.

3. What Is The Process For Servicing A Rolex?

Servicing a Rolex is something that one should not try to do at home. The watches feature fine mechanical movements that require expertise and equipment to service the watch properly. Therefore, it is always advisable to service your Rolex from a professional.

For instance, if your car breaks down and needs to change. Will you do it yourself or take it to a service centre? That’s precisely the case. A mechanical timepiece also needs modern lubricants to run properly and have the components changed timely to guarantee the best performance.

Also Read: How to Verify the Authenticity of a Rolex watch?

7 Steps For Servicing A Rolex Watch Are:

  • Disassembly

The first step in servicing a Rolex involves disassembling the watch and its internal movement. Depending on the Rolex model and its Calibre, an average mechanical watch consists of numerous components, and a few complex ones can even have thousands of pieces. Therefore, you need specialised tools to disassemble the watch or else it might get damaged.

  • Cleaning

Once the professionals disassemble the watch and its movement, they must thoroughly clean each component before applying the new lubricant. This particular stage of the servicing process involves ultrasonic cleaning. The experts use specifically formulated solutions that can help remove dirt and old lubricants.

  • Parts Replacement

A reputed watchmaker will then carefully inspect the watch's individual components to check the regular wear and tear and remove the damaged parts. It is imperative that the professionals only use genuine Rolex parts. Certain elements in a Rolex are consumable throughout their lifecycle and need to be replaced at a certain point to extend their longevity.

  • Reassemble & Reapplication

After cleaning and replacing the dirty and damaged watch parts, the next step is reassembling the watch. The reapplication of all the lubricants follows this. The lubricants play a crucial role in ensuring Rolex's overall function. The professionals accurately apply a lot of specialised lubricants to the watch, which is one of the most crucial.

  • Time Calibration & Regulations

After reassembling the movement, adjusting the dial at the correct time is necessary to confirm it functions as per the manufacturer’s specifications. This process also requires various specialised tools and other high-end equipment that the professionals have to carry out the process with utmost patience and expertise.

  • Refurbishing & Polishing

So far, we have discussed how important it is to clean the various inner parts of the watch. But, the bracelet and the case require equal care. Hence, it is essential to polish and refurbish these parts to retain their beauty and functionality.

The focus lies on cleaning the external surfaces at this particular stage, including the bracelet and the case. Each has its gloss or surface finish restored by removing the scuffs and scratches accumulated over the years.

However, it is better to leave the collectable vintage timepieces with their original polish as it significantly contributes to their overall value. These watch pieces fetch a hefty amount when you sell Rolex watches in the pre-owned market.

  • Final Tests

After completing the service process, a few important post-service tests help ensure that the watch is functioning accurately as it should. Few tests are related to verifying the seal of the timepieces so that it doesn't accumulate dirt and moisture. While the other tests help to testify to the movement’s performance after the casing.

4. Who Should Service A Rolex Watch?

Servicing a Rolex watch involves various precise steps in which you need to tear down each part to clean it. Only the professionals can carefully remove the dirt to reassemble the watch.

However, not all watchmakers can service the Rolex watches properly. Many will use fake parts because of their inability to purchase genuine watch parts from Rolex. Therefore, conduct proper research before you take to service your beloved Rolex timepiece.

5. Should You Visit An Independent Watchmaker Or Rolex Service Center?

Now that you know that you must service your Rolex professionally, there are two main options you get to choose from:

  • Independent Watchmaker
  • Rolex Service Center

While both of them can help you restore your Rolex to its correct functionality, the decision greatly depends on your watch type.

  • Modern Rolex

If you own a modern Rolex timepiece, it is better to send them directly to Rolex. This is because the watch parts are not very rare or collectable, and even if Rolex replaces some of the parts, rest assured to get back your timepiece in the identical state.

Moreover, in some of the new Rolex watches, the brand doesn’t sell the parts to independent watchmakers, making it suitable to send the watch to Rolex for servicing.

  • Older Rolex

In this case, take your Rolex to a reputed independent watchmaker as you will have a better say in the service process. You can easily instruct them not to replace a specific part.

  • Vintage Rolex

The popularity and desirability of a vintage Rolex are related to its components' originality. When Rolex services a watch, they aim to restore the timepiece's functionality. This process often involves replacing the hands, dial, bezel insert, and other parts. All these components in a vintage Rolex can greatly impact its overall charm and value.

6. Should You Service A Rolex Before You Sell It?

Are you looking to sell your Rolex? Honestly, servicing is an inherent part of a typical Rolex watch. Depending on your Rolex’s model, the price can vary significantly as your watch may require numerous or minor changes or replacements to restore back its proper functionality.

If you choose to sell Rolex to an online dealer, do not take the burden to service the watch at a cost. The dealers might already have their in-house watchmakers who can easily service the Rolex at a lesser price than what you’ll pay.

But, it is always advisable to take very good care of your Rolex to retain its value.

Tips for cleaning your Rolex include:

  • Clean the external surface of a Rolex using a microfiber cloth
  • Clean Rolex with an Oyster case using soap and water
  • Check your Rolex’s watch gaskets to ensure the seal of the case
  • Remove the watch strap before cleaning to prevent damage
  • If you wear your Rolex in water, rinse it off later


Rolex watches last a lifetime and beyond. But to ensure that the watch retains its charm and proper functionality even after years, make sure that you service it frequently. Servicing a Rolex is an integral part of the possession, and hence, one must not neglect it. Please take it to a renowned watchmaker or a Rolex service centre to maintain the watch in its best condition.

Also Read: Rolex Price Guide: Find the Price of Your Rolex

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