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Citizen short battery life


Dxnnis
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Hi,

First post here as usually just look around but here goes. I have a citizen watch that's getting on a bit but keeps great time and works great but the battery only lasts on average about 6 months, any ideas on why or is it just old age? Would love to keep it going as long as I can as I still like itIMG_20210523_230056.thumb.jpg.c0a1678d75d12be99a75ecc336929337.jpgIMG_20210523_225956.thumb.jpg.4403a565af0aa30b24f1c652ed22f329.jpg

All ideas gratefully received,

Thanks for reading 

Dennis

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Mass produced, never serviced quartz modules are not guaranteed to maintain optimal battery life forever. I can't read the exact model but it should be possible to replace it for less than 20 GBP.

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38 minutes ago, Dxnnis said:

Hi,

First post here as usually just look around but here goes. I have a citizen watch that's getting on a bit but keeps great time and works great but the battery only lasts on average about 6 months, any ideas on why or is it just old age? Would love to keep it going as long as I can as I still like itIMG_20210523_230056.thumb.jpg.c0a1678d75d12be99a75ecc336929337.jpgIMG_20210523_225956.thumb.jpg.4403a565af0aa30b24f1c652ed22f329.jpg

All ideas gratefully received,

Thanks for reading 

Dennis

The movement (module) is gummed up so the motor is having to do more work and consume more power than it should hence the shorter battery life. As @jdm has pointed out, it might be cheaper to replace than to service... unless you want the fun experience!!

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There is a technical guide so it can be rebuilt.  Sheet says battery life 5 years.  I serviced a Seiko quartz that ate the battery in one month and lost 20 seconds in that time.  Been going for 2 years now and barely 5 seconds off since I last set it.  Rarely is anything worn out.  Usually just gummed up oils.  There just isn't a lot of stress on the parts. 

Not many watchmakers will waste there time with a quartz like this one.  Any new movement is going to be decades old and will need to be serviced.  Catch-22 situation.  Some watchmakers have commented that they will rebuild these because they can have it done faster that searching out and ordering a replacement.  You just have to find one with spare time and is willing.  There was talk of a more modern movement that fits but I don't know any more. 

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19 minutes ago, bklake said:

There is a technical guide so it can be rebuilt.  Sheet says battery life 5 years.  I serviced a Seiko quartz that ate the battery in one month and lost 20 seconds in that time.  Been going for 2 years now and barely 5 seconds off since I last set it.  Rarely is anything worn out.  Usually just gummed up oils.  There just isn't a lot of stress on the parts. 

Not many watchmakers will waste there time with a quartz like this one.  Any new movement is going to be decades old and will need to be serviced.  Catch-22 situation.  Some watchmakers have commented that they will rebuild these because they can have it done faster that searching out and ordering a replacement.  You just have to find one with spare time and is willing.  There was talk of a more modern movement that fits but I don't know any more. 

Where did you find the guide for this? It might be something I might consider trying

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 Same symptoms can develope due to moisture damage to electronics.

This caliber might be obsolete, in case exploded view of the movement is not available and you decide to attack this yourself, take pictures at every stage of disassembly. 

Good luck

 

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8 hours ago, Nucejoe said:

 Same symptoms can develope due to moisture damage to electronics.

This caliber might be obsolete, in case exploded view of the movement is not available and you decide to attack this yourself, take pictures at every stage of disassembly. 

Good luck

 

Thank you and a big thank you to everyone that chipped in with advice

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9 hours ago, Dxnnis said:

Where did you find the guide for this? It might be something I might consider trying

If you're going to service the movement you might want to do it properly like checking the current consumption first. And what it serviced measured it again to give you a clue if you actually succeeded.

And if you're looking for the service guide I've attached it.

 

1021_Citizen 5500, 5501, 5502, 5503, 5510, 5511, 5530A.pdf

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15 hours ago, jdm said:

I can't read the exact model but it should be possible to replace it for less than 20 GBP.

Ok, Citizen 5500 = Miyota 5S10, both discontinued, still be can found NOS for about 20 GPB, probably arriving with dried oils anyway. Or check sizes to find the current Miyota product which may cost even less.

There comes the catch 22 mentioned above. Take it apart, clean, lubricate correctly, get it working 100% as new, now to be blunt chances are not great that a complete beginner will succeed in doing that. Or replace it for not much money, job done.

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Decent quality higher end movements may justify a full service but many watches are 'fashion' watches with low cost movements, with more and more being from china. For my hobby, I do a lot of quartz watches, mainly ladies, for my local charity shop on foc basis (its cost prohibitive for them to take to a professional and every penny helps to  recycle these watches for those of limited means and earns money for the charity). 

I first test setting functions, line test and pulse with old and new battery.  Most times it is the battery that's duff and may have leaked.  If the rest of the watch is ok but does not run with a new battery, I remove hands and dial and give the movement a good flush out with IPA in an aerosol (surprising how much dunk comes out, and IPA is ok with electrics as it is widely used for cleaning electric circuits!!).  Whilst it is still wet I will work hand setting etc and push/pull the stem in and out a few times to clean any contacts. I then make sure any leakage is cleaned up and any damage assessed. I then let it dry in a warm environment (normally on a piece of paper on top of a radiator for a few mins only, then leave for a say 10 mins whilst I tidy up the case, crystal etc.  I then re-lube pivots (both ends), run through the line test to move oil around, fit new battery and see if it runs ok.  This seems to sort things out most times. If still not running, its in the bin! and buy a new movement for £2!. Apart from my time I rarely spend more than £5 and often only 30p for new battery etc! 

I know this process may be frowned upon and I would not do it for a better quality watch/movement, and would do a full service when justified, but for low cost movements it seems to work for me.  Even some costlier fashion brands have the cheapest of movements and its probably best to just replace it.  Time-wise I doubt there isn't much difference in flushing as above and time spent finding, ordering etc a replacement movement!

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11 hours ago, JohnR725 said:

 

If you're going to service the movement you might want to do it properly like checking the current consumption first. And what it serviced measured it again to give you a clue if you actually succeeded.

And if you're looking for the service guide I've attached it.

 

1021_Citizen 5500, 5501, 5502, 5503, 5510, 5511, 5530A.pdf 328.98 kB · 0 downloads

Thank you for the guide, as for oils they are the only things I need to get when/if I give it a go. As it's a fairly basic movement would I need different types or is there one type you would recommend for this? Sorry but as for cleaning what is the best way to do a good job?

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3 hours ago, Dxnnis said:

Thank you for the guide, as for oils they are the only things I need to get when/if I give it a go. As it's a fairly basic movement would I need different types or is there one type you would recommend for this? Sorry but as for cleaning what is the best way to do a good job?

Good news for cleaning is it shouldn't have organic oils like pocket watches vintage watches have that require aggressive cleaning. The bad news as it has a lot of plastic components that don't always take kindly to cleaning fluids used for metal components. Then strangely enough we have a service sheets and I don't think but I didn't read all the fine print the usually don't tell you what to use to clean the plastic components. Plus you want to be careful in your drying the whole thing that you don't melted or damage the parts from excessive heat.

Then the lubrication casually looks confusing unless you know how to translate them? Like for instance at the website below we have something called Synt-A-Lube Which is really 9010 and if you look at the image I attached basically what citizen did was dropped the first several letters. Then going down the list the next one is Synta-Visco-Lube Which is 9020. Skipping over the next one we get the last one which I'm pretty sure is Synta-Frigo-Lube . Just basically a really light oils used on some quartz watches they also make an oil for quartz watches that you could use instead except for some reason I noticed they no longer are recommending the quartz oil on most quartz watches the recommending this even though the quartz oil exists? Then in the CH01  would be a mystery oil except I Google that found the link which explains exactly what I already explained anyway. But I'm just not seeing it anywhere in use on the diagram? Looks like basically is just a grease

https://vintagecitizenwatches.com/2016/03/13/citizen-watch-oil-kit/

citizen quartz lubrication.JPG

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21 hours ago, canthus said:

I know this process may be frowned upon 

It seems perfectly right to me. In my opinion it is a big mistake to suggest a cheap quartz module should be service just because the manufacturer published an exploded diagram. Then the discussion moves to scientific aspects like which oil is best when in reality someone that has never took apart a watch mov.t before will have trouble in trivial tasks as not loosing parts, getting the rotor to stand right, and fit multiple pinions under a small bridge.

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16 minutes ago, jdm said:

In my opinion it is a big mistake to suggest a cheap quartz module should be service just because the manufacturer published an exploded diagram

That's a sad point of view somebody went to a lot of trouble to write up a technical bulletin and you don't want us to disassemble that watch that only cost practically nothing?

I found the technical bulletins on the site below amusing movements that cost not nothing but very close to nothing and there is a technical bulletin on how to service it.

https://www.ronda.ch/en/

23 minutes ago, jdm said:

Then the discussion moves to scientific aspects like which oil is best when in reality someone that has never took apart a watch mov.t before will have trouble in trivial tasks as not loosing parts, getting the rotor to stand right, and fit multiple pinions under a small bridge.

You forgot to include something? It's like somewhere else in the group someone's asking for technical knowledge of servicing of quartz watch they want a book. Then next will come up to test equipment because unfortunately quartz watches have electronic circuit So you can't look at them with your loop and see if they're good and bad. A variety of miscellaneous test equipment is required.

That I course quartz watches have interesting challenges. A lot of times the super cheap watches really weren't meant to be serviced that presents interesting challenges. They were assembled by automated machine read not humans by hand. If you go up to a little nicer movement that was meant to be serviced it still can be quite a challenge to get the gears in. Or even keep the rotor where it's supposed to be it seems to want to keep sticking the things. So they can definitely looks simple but simple doesn't always mean challenge free.

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1 hour ago, JohnR725 said:

That's a sad point of view somebody went to a lot of trouble to write up a technical bulletin and you don't want us to disassemble that watch that only cost practically nothing?

Absolutely not. But I like the what Canthus explained before, getting to the result in the shortest time. Sometime I am given broken watches with a Miyota 0S10, I can have the customer getting it fixed for EUR 10 instead of 50. I do value my time, and everybody's money.

 

1 hour ago, JohnR725 said:

If you go up to a little nicer movement that was meant to be serviced it still can be quite a challenge to get the gears in. Or even keep the rotor where it's supposed to be it seems to want to keep sticking the things. So they can definitely looks simple but simple doesn't always mean challenge free.

Absolutely true. That's why I would discourage a beginner to get early into that stuff, to prevent frustration. There below the thread about on which mov.ts one should build dexterity and skills first.

 

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