Here's how a quartz watch work

The overview

A quartz watch is essentially built of 5 separate peices: Stepping motor, quartz crystal, electric components, mechanical components, and the battery.

The Origin

The first-ever quartz watch was available for mass production in 1969 and made by Seiko.  Quartz watches became mainstream due to their accuracy and cost-effectiveness.

The function of batteries in a quartz watch

Batteries send current through the electronics, which in short, makes the watch tick.  In contrast, mechanical watches are powered by a wound spring.

The Function of the Quartz Crystal

The quartz crystal is a pitch fork-shaped crystal that acts as the heartbeat of the watch. The quartz crystal oscillates 32,768 times per second

The electronics in a quartz watch

In a quartz watch, electronics is what converts the oscillations made by the quartz crystal to a once per second signal, which is why quartz watches tick once per second.

The Mechanical Components of a Quartz Watch

The stepping motor detects the vibrations from the quartz crystal which is converted to a pulse of 1 second. The pulse sends energy through the cogs and gears, which makes the watch go "tick, tick, tick, tick" every 1 second.

Battery life of a quartz battery

The typical battery life of a quartz watch is between 1-3 years. The amount of battery life depends on the power efficiency of the watch, the quality of the watch, and how many different functions the watch has. The battery life could be as short as 6 months.

Does quartz watches need servicing?

Just like any other mechanical machine you own, quartz watches also need regular servicing. There is a rule of thumb which states that taking a watch for a service every 3 years is a wise thing to do. However, since you will be changing the battery every 1-3 years, the servicing can be made a part of the battery change.