Many people consider purchasing a Breitling watch as an investment, because they are quite costly. Like Rolex watches, Breitling watches are a status symbol for those who wear them, and most Breitling owners strive to take good care of their watches so they have them for years to come. Breitling recommends taking its watches to a Breitling retailer or authorized maintenance center for maintenance and cleaning every four or five years; two to three if you submerge your watch in water frequently. This service may set you back several hundred dollars or more, but there are some things you can do between services to keep your watch looking new.
Most likely, you already have the supplies needed to clean your watch at home, so it really is just a matter of gathering the necessary tools. Although some watch owners prefer to purchase ultrasonic cleaners, you can use less expensive tools and still get great results.
You can find other products, such as Simichrome polish, for sale online, but plain old soap and water does the trick perfectly. If you like to clean your watches regularly, putting together a small watch cleaning kit containing these items allows you to be prepared to clean your watch at all times.
The first step in preparing to clean a Breitling watch is to fill a small bowl or basin with warm water. If the watch has a leather watch band, remove the band prior to cleaning. It is possible to spot clean a Breitling with a leather band, but for a thorough cleaning, just remove the band so you can submerge the metal watch parts. While the leather band is off, you can clean and condition it as well. Once your bowl is about half full, add a small amount of mild soap, such as Softsoap hand soap or evendish soap.
Dip the clean toothbrush in the soapy water and begin scrubbing your watch band to loosen the dirt and oil. Rinse the brush from time to time as you clean your band, and make sure you bend the links back and forth as you scrub to get both sides and in between the links. You should also scrub the watch's clasp to remove any dirt and residue. Once both sides of the band and the clasp are clean, scrub around the face of the watch gently, both front and back. Now, rinse the watch in clean, warm water, and then dry thoroughly.
Dry your watch with a dry, cotton cloth, and then buff it clean. You could purchase a cotton polishing cloth made specifically for watches and jewelry, but any soft cotton cloth you have at home works fine. To give your watch extra sparkle, purchase Cape Cod cloths, which are polishing cloths designed specifically for Breitling and other high-end watches.
To keep your Breitling watch in top shape between cleanings, follow a few simple rules. First, remove your Breitling when you plan to get your hands wet, including when you shower. While metal Breitling watches are waterproof, prolonged exposure to chemicals or hard water can cause problems, so the company recommends you remove the watch whenever possible instead of submerging it in water. If you do wear your watch in salt water or a chlorinated pool water, you should rinse it in fresh water as soon as possible. Leather watch bands should remain dry, so if you have a leather Breitling band, definitely remove it before swimming or bathing. Additionally, avoid pulling the crown out when the watch is wet, or damage may occur.
In addition to these water-related precautions, the company advises against exposing the watch to extreme temperatures, strong magnetic fields, and shocks. While its watches can stand up to everyday wear and tear, extreme shocks may result in major damage, which could require an expensive repair.
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