Manhattan Time Service – Watch Repair

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How to Replace a Battery in a TAG Heuer Watch

About battery operated TAG Heuer watches

Founded in 1860 by Edouard Heuer as the Heuer Watch Company and later renamed as TAG Heuer in 1985 after its acquisition by Technique Avant Garde, TAG Heuer produces some of the best Swiss-made luxury watches today. A common question that arises is “Do TAG Heuer watches have batteries?” and the answer is YES. Among their famous sports watch and chronograph collections, TAG Heuer offers a wide range of battery-operated versions, including TAG Heuer Formula 1, TAG Heuer Aquaracer, TAG Heuer Link, and TAG Heuer Carrera models.

Tag Heuer Aquaracer for watch repair Manhattan Time Service

The average Heuer battery life span in a TAG is around two years, after which they must be replaced with a new one. Aside from chronograph models, all TAG Heuer quartz watches are equipped with an End-Of-Life (EOL) indicator. Once the battery is nearing the end, the seconds hand on the watch makes four-second jumps every four seconds rather than moving every one second. If you see this happening on your watch, then it’s time for a battery change.

TAG Heuer watches this method can be used on:

Keep in mind that these are the TAG Heuer quartz models that this method will work on.

TAG Heuer Formula 1 quartz models

Tag Heuer Formula 1 battery replacement

TAG Heuer Aquaracer quartz models

Tag Heuer Aquaracer battery

TAG Heuer Carrera quartz models

Tag Heuer Carrera battery operating chronograph

TAG Heuer Monaco quartz models

Tag Heuer Monaco battery operating chronograph

TAG Heuer Link quartz models

Tag Heuer ladies battery operating link watch

TAG Heuer Connected quartz models

Tag Heuer connected battery operating watch

Tools needed to replace a battery in a TAG Heuer watch

Prior to undergoing the TAG Heuer watch battery replacement process, make sure that you have the correct battery size and the correct battery type. In our example, we will be using the Energizer 395/399 1.55V on a TAG Heuer Aquaracer watch. However, these tools and the subsequent steps are also applicable to carrying out the procedure on other models listed above too.

Tools used to properly replace a battery in a Tag Heuer watch

In addition, you will also need the following tools:

Bergeon watchmaker bench pad surface

Clean surface area to work on

watchmaking precision brass tweezers

Tweezers with insulated tips

precision screwdriver used for servicing tag heuer watches

Micro screwdrivers

watch case-back opener

Watch case-back opener

rubber watch gasket for tag heuer watches


seiko silicon grease used for lubricating rubber o-rings

Gasket lubricant

Steps to replace a battery in a TAG Heuer watch – the procedure

Whether you’re changing a battery in a TAG Heuer Aquaracer, or any other battery powered original Tag Heuer watch, here are the eight basic steps that need to be completed.

Step 1 – Bracelet and case-back removal

tag heuer aquaracer on a watchmakers bench
separating tag heuer aquaracer bracelet from casing

Using a spring bar tool, remove the bracelet from the case of the watch. Then, using a case-back remover tool, carefully unscrew the case-back by twisting it counterclockwise. Be careful not to use worn-out or bent tools as these can do irreversible damage to your watch.

Step 2 – Battery & O-Ring removal

tag heuer aquaracer gasket replacement
tag heuer aquaracer o-ring removal

Now that the case-back has been removed, unscrew the small component holding the battery in place with a screwdriver. Carefully remove both the battery and the O-Ring with the tweezers and discard them or carefully inspect for rips and tares. If you don’t find any the gasket may be re-used after applying gasket lubricant.

Step 3 – Power Consumption Test

tag heuer aquaracer power consumption testing

Conduct a power consumption test on the watch using the proper machinery, in this example we are using the Witschi Q TEST 6000

Step 4 – New Battery Installation

carefully handling the battery by its sides to avoid a short circuit
tag heuer aquaracer new battery installation

Take the new battery and install it using the tweezers. The handling of a new power cell should only be done using tweezers with insulated tips. We prefer using Energizer batteries as those have less tendency of leaking harmful acid inside the movement.

Step 5 – Case and bracelet ultrasonic cleaning

ultrasonic cleaning of tag heuer steel casing and bracelet
tag heuer aquaracer case steam cleaning

Clean the case and bracelet using ultrasonic and steam machinery.

Step 6 – Assembly

replacing the rubber o-ring in a tag heuer watch
assembling the internal components back into casing Tag Heuer Aquaracer
fitting and screwing the case-back into the tag heuer casing
ensuring the case-back is properly fitted into the Aquaracer casing and sealed

Before returning the case-back onto the watch case, a new gasket, or O-Ring should be installed. Set the replacement O-Ring in the lubrication box and cover with the lid to guarantee that it is properly coated. Once sufficiently lubricated, fit the gasket into place and carefully screw the case-back on. Make certain that the case-back and case are exactly aligned as to avoid any damage. Test for a proper fit by rotating the case-back clockwise and anticlockwise to ensure it screws in smoothly. Although it should be fastened tightly, do not over force it, otherwise you may risk the tool slipping and causing a large scratch to the case-back. IMPORTANT: We can’t stress this enough, DON’T use pliers or any other household hardware to work the case-back as you will probably permanently damage it, instead use a ‘case-back opener‘ specifically made for watches.

Step 7 – Setting the date, time, and chronograph functions

how to set the tag heuer aquaracer watch?

Now that the new battery has been fitted, the functions of the watch are ready to be set. First, pull out the crown twice to the hands-setting position. Press both chronograph pushers and hold them down for about three seconds—this will enable the setting of the split second chronograph hand (the long center hand). Press the upper pusher button to move it, and once you’re satisfied with the hand position, press the lower pusher to then activate the setting of the 1/10 split second hand (found on the lower sub-dial). Again, press the upper pusher to move the hand to the desired position and once that’s achieved, press the lower pusher to then activate the setting of the chronograph minute counter (left sub-dial). Repeat the same method as above.

– Once all the three hands are set, push the crown to the neutral position and press the upper pusher to test if the chronograph hands are performing correctly. Reset all positions to zero and the chronograph synchronization is done.

– To set the time, pull the crown out twice, and turn the hands clockwise. Once the correct time has been set, push the crown back to neutral position.

– To set the date, pull the crown out once and turn the crown clockwise. Once the correct date has been set, push the crown back to neutral position.

– When the crown is in the neutral position, screw it in using your fingers ONLY. Tools will over tighten the delicate thread within the crown, which will compromise the watch’s water resistance.

Step 8 – Water resistance testing with a dry-tester

tag heuer aquaracer dry waterproof testing
passed water resistance testing 2 bars

Test the water resistance of the watch by using a dry test. In this case we’ve used the Sigma SM-8810 Water Resistance Tester

TAG Heuer will not crack under pressure

Although the brand’s famous motto says that watches from TAG Heuer don’t crack under pressure, it is not entirely true if the watch isn’t properly sealed and tested for water-resistance. Known for their sporty and robust watches, TAG Heuer water resistance is normally excellent. TAG Heuer waterproof levels vary from model to model for instance, the typical TAG Heuer Formula 1 water resistance is 200 meters, while the average Tag Heuer Carrera water resistant depth is 100 meters.

TAG Heuer water resistant watches will only remain so if they are suitably sealed after a battery change. Specialized watchmaking machinery must be used to properly execute a TAG Heuer pressure seal of the stainless steel back. Otherwise, you may face water damage. If you’re wondering, “is there water in my TAG Heuer?” then bring it to a watch specialist immediately for assessment and potential water damage repair, the sooner the better.

Things NOT TO DO when replacing a battery in a TAG Heuer watch

To ensure a smooth procedure on your TAG Heuer, take the following into consideration:

• Do not use pliers unless you want to scratch your TAG Heuer case-back.

• Do not use a sharp object that you cannot control with your thumb and index finger inside the movement.

• Try to avoid Renata batteries. After having changed thousands of watch batteries, we have found that Renata batteries are prone to leaking acid into the movement. Instead, we recommend Energizer batteries. This is just our personal preference.

• Do not use a different battery size other than one that fits into the battery compartment.

• Do not touch the battery with metal tweezers without insulation tips, otherwise you may risk shorting out the battery.

How much does it cost if you’d rather have a watchmaker do it?

Battery replacement cost on a Tag watch depends on the complexity of your particular watch model. For example, replacing a battery on a Formula 1 would typically be higher than a TAG Heuer Link. A typical cost ranges anywhere from $50 – $80.

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