Summer, Surf And Swim - Just How Water Resistant Is Your Watch?

Posted on June 20 2017

Summer is upon us, so as you get ready to hit the beach and enjoy the waves be sure your timepieces can withstand the water. Understanding water resistance is key to knowing what you can and cannot do. Some assume water resistance means they can just dive in a pool wearing their watch, but it’s not always the case.

Looking at specifications, water resistance is measured in atm units or atmosphere/bar units. We could go into a lot of detail regarding the exact tests done by the International Organization for Standardization, but we want to make it easy for you to understand. If you’re shopping and it says the watch is “waterproof” be wary and follow our quick cheat sheet closely.

 Strumento Marino

For watches with an atm stamp on the back here’s what those numbers mean:

♦  3 atm or 30 m - your watch can only withstand a bit of splash or rain. Do NOT shower, swim or dive with a watch marked as only 3 atm.
♦  5 atm or 50 m - you can swim with your watch, but NO snorkeling or diving.
♦  10 atm or 100 m - swim, surf, snorkel, but NO diving.
♦  20 atm or 200 m - your watch can handle major water sports now including diving more below the surface than you would with snorkeling.

      There are categories specific for deeper dives and in this case, you’re looking at 200m to 300+m depending on the depth. For professional saturation diving (deep sea levels), watches are marked specifically for mixed-gas.

      Overall, for us looking to enjoy more recreational activities this summer, it would be good to look for watches marked 10 atm and above.

      Strumento Marino

      We invite you to take a look at Strumento Divers in our shop, especially those designed with silicone straps. You’ll find Strumentos have a water resistance of 30 atm, allowing you to enjoy the water without worry!


      Written by: Min A. Lee | Monochrome Wings

      Feature image courtesy of Strumento.


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