Even in this modern day and age, a nice wrist watch has many purposes. Some people wear it as a fashion accessory, but many choose them for their practicality. We’re not talking just about telling time, but also many other functions which make our lives easier. This is also true for those of us who like spending time outdoors.
Some watches are designed for active people, and we can get a lot of useful information from them. Many of these run on conventional batteries. While they can last for a while, there will still come a time when you need to replace them. This can be a nuisance, because you can forget to do that on time, and your watch stops working as a consequence.
For this reason, solar watches were introduced. By using solar energy to power themselves, they eliminate this problem altogether. You won’t ever need to visit the jeweler to have your battery replaced. Solar wristwatches charge the battery every time they are exposed to a light source, so they keep working no matter what.
Like other types of watches, they too are designed for different people and lifestyles – you will find both formal and casual watches with this technology. To find the best solar watch you need to think about where and how you’ll use it – whether you need a rugged device which can go deep underwater and resist impacts, or you want a sleek looking watch to go with your style. We thought about this, so you can find both types in our solar watch reviews. Be sure to go through the buying guide below to learn more about how these devices work, and what should your priorities be when buying one.
How To Choose A Solar Watch – Buying Guide
When buying a new watch, you expect it to last a long time. This goes for solar watches too – they are in no way inferior to any other type of watch. Make sure you pick something made from high quality materials and with a good construction because it’s no use it can charge on its own if it falls apart quickly. Products we featured here were tested and gave reliable and long-lasting performance. In addition, some users want extra functions, and solar watches really offer a wide array of choices. Take a look.
Implementing a small solar panel into a wristwatch was a great idea. Since the beginnings, this system has come a long way in terms of efficiency. Basically, the solar panel collects light, creates energy and stores it in a battery. All watches in this category have quartz movement, which is very precise. However, this type of movement requires a battery to work. So this rechargeable battery powers the mechanism and keeps the watch working. Depending on the manufacturer and models, you will get different running time between charges. The time it takes to drain a fully charged battery can vary from several months to a couple of years.
As you can see, running out of power isn’t really a problem if you’re wearing your watch, since it’s bound to get a glimpse of light from time to time. Some models even have power saving features which reduce the activity of extra features to keep the basic functions running for a longer time period. Also, some models we featured have atomic timekeeping. Using this technology, the watch adjusts itself to the exact time which it receives through a radio signal. This is very handy, because otherwise you need to make adjustments manually.
We all like seeing a nice watch on our wrist. Of course, not everyone has the same taste and not every watch will suit each person equally. Solar watches come in many different designs, so you aren’t limited to a certain watch if you decide to go with this technology. Some are very sleek and elegant, designed to go well with your style and a more formal attire. Others are better suited for casual wearing, as well as outdoor and sport activities.
In addition to basic design, the size also needs to be considered. Some watches can be too large or too small for your wrist, so be sure to check this before buying. Other things come into play here too, such as color of the case, dial and band. Most products we reviewed are black, because this is universal and looks good in most situations. However, details in different color can really give it a nice touch. Finally, watches have either an analog or a digital display (or both), which really comes down to your preference.
Any watch you buy needs to be comfortable when you wear it. It’s best when you don’t even feel it on your hand. This guarantees that you will gladly wear it everyday. It shouldn’t create excessive pressure on your wrist, but it shouldn’t be too loose either. Look at the band which comes with the watch – the type of material used as well as size and width of the band.
Steel bracelets allow corrections, so if it’s too large for your wrist, a jeweler (or you) can remove a piece and create a better fit. Straps made of resin, leather or fabric don’t have this option, but they come with a buckle so you can adjust tightness. You have two basic choices when it comes to opening and closing – either a clasp or a buckle. A clasp is more common on steel bracelets. It’s perhaps easier to use, but doesn’t allow length adjustment.
Many features can make your solar watch more appealing – it can do much more than simply tell time. Most products we featured offer precision timekeeping. Things like a stopwatch or a countdown timer allow you to make exact measurements. Some of the best solar watches have options to choose among time zones, so it sets time automatically and makes it very easy for travelers. In addition to time, it’s very nice if you can see the date on your watch too. One of the things that are included on almost every watch is an alarm, or even several of them if you need more than one reminder.
Certain watches have special sensors which detect outside conditions and present them on the display. These include an altimeter, barometer or thermometer. An altimeter will show the altitude of your location, calculated based on your initial position and changes in the atmospheric pressure, measured by the barometer. Thermometer can also be useful in many situations when we wish to know air temperature. In addition to these, some watches help you navigate by allowing you to use a compass built into them.
Choice of materials greatly determines the durability of your new watch, and its overall performance. Common choices are stainless steel or resin, because of their exceptional toughness. Some watches even have a combination of the two. Steel is a bit heavier, but it can look more elegant. The band can be made from the same material, but it doesn’t have to be. In addition to materials already mentioned, bands can be made of leather or canvas. Every material has its ups and downs, so it’s up to you to decide what will work best.
Not having to worry about getting your watch wet is great. Some manufacturers go much further than simply splash-proofing their watches, and create products which can spend a substantial amount of time underwater without sustaining any damage. All the products we featured are waterproof. However, these ratings vary from one to another, with some products being tested to endure water activities such as long swimming sessions or scuba diving. Think about this too if you plan to take part in such activities.
Quality and Reliability
We mentioned this when we talked about materials – high build quality ensures durability. This is important because a watch isn’t something you buy every day. It needs to be resistant to damage, especially if you’re going to be using it outdoors often. Since we’re outdoor enthusiasts, many products we picked are shock resistant and don’t break easily. It’s often worth spending a bit more money on a product, because it will pay off in the long run. Besides, quality and comfort shape your user experience.
Some manufacturers have made a name for themselves, and their solar watches are known to be reliable. Of course, there are many options out there, and people work on innovations every day. When you decide to try something new, try to do some research before shopping. Take a look at what other users had to say about a particular product – whether it lasts a long time, feels nice on your wrist or endures harsh conditions. This way you’ll get a clearer image and will be able to pick out the best solar powered watch.
Q: How Do Solar Watches Work?
A: A light powered watch has a solar panel built in behind the crystal, either above or underneath the dial. The solar cells in the panel collect the light and convert it into electricity, which is then stored in the battery. This is very efficient, so the battery powers your watch even if it wasn’t exposed to light very long. Besides sunlight, other light sources can charge your watch, but at a different pace. Some people even use a flashlight to give their watch an additional boost. However, the charging will be most efficient on clear sunny days. This aside, solar watches work the same way as regular watches.
Q: What Are The Advantages Of A Solar Watch?
A: The biggest advantage is not having to replace the battery. This gives you a peace of mind and improves the reliability of your watch because it won’t stop (as long as you don’t keep it in a box for months or years on end). Any substantial light source will do the trick.
Q: Are Solar Watches Waterproof?
A: This depends on the product, but most of them are. Like we pointed out, all products we picked out for you are waterproof. They do have different ratings though (as we discussed in detail a bit earlier), so you should pay attention.
Q: How Do Solar Watches Work At Night?
A: In this type of watch solar energy doesn’t directly power the movement, but rather charges the battery which supplies the power for the watch. This means that the power is stored, and serves as a constant source even if your watch is away from any type of light source. Because of this it operates non-stop – both day and night.
Globo Surf Overview
Solar watches are definitely a step in the right direction for the watch industry. They make things much easier for us because of the increased autonomy of the watch. We can be worry free and have a reliable and functioning device on our wrist at all times. As you could see, a really wide choice of products finds its place in the solar watch category. It’s up to you to come to a decision and pick a watch best suited to your character. We hope our guide helped you and pointed you in the right direction. Be free to pick any of the products we talked about, you can be certain you’re getting a durable and reliable watch you’ll be happy with!
More Backpacking/Hiking Reviews:
- Backpacking Stove
- Backpacking Food
- Backpacking Sleeping Bag
- Hiking Pants
- Trekking Poles
- Down Jacket
- Backpacking Sleeping Pad
- Lightweight Backpack
- Hiking Sandals
- Hiking GPS
Have you tried a solar watch that made it onto our list? How long did it last between charges? How fast does it charge? Is it durable? Please share your experience with us in the comment section below.
Globo Surf Solar Watches Reviews