Wondering how to use a TAG Heuer dive watch? If you take a look at the TAG Heuer catalog, you'll find that the Aquaracer is TAG Heuer's line of watches made specifically for diving. There are various models in the Aquaracer line, each with different options and ways to use them. It would be impossible to explain all the watches in one article, so one model will be chosen to be an example of the quintessential diver's watch: the automatic 500M Caliber 5. The 500M Caliber 5 has several prominent features which will be discussed here.
- How to wind the automatic movement. An automatic movement is a mechanical movement that winds by the movement of the wrist. If the automatic movement is stopped, shake the watch back and forth gently a few times to wind it. From that point on, wearing the watch will wind the watch as you move your hand naturally.
- How to use the elapsed time bezel. The elapsed time bezel is used to time the duration of a dive. To use it, turn the bezel until the diamond at the top is set to the time you want to start your timing. Set to the current time just as you are going under water. To read it, read where the hands point on the bezel, not the watch dial. To read the elapsed time, start reading the bezel from the diamond clockwise around the bezel to count minutes. In ten minutes time, the minute hand will be pointing to the ten mark on the bezel. At twenty minutes time, it will point to the twenty mark on the bezel and so on, all around the bezel for a full hour at which point it will be back at the triangle.
- How to charge the lume. A bright light source, specially the sun, will charge the luminescence on the hands, markers and bezel so that they can be read in low light. A bright flashlight will also work.
- How to set watch using screwdown crown. To set the watch you need to manipulate the screwdown crown, which helps keep the watch water-resistant. You unscrew the crown by turning it counterclockwise until it pops free. Pull out the crown one click to set the date and two clicks to set the time. When finished, push the crown in gently with a fingertip and turn it gently clockwise to screw it back down. If you feel it binding, stop immediately and unscrew it to try again. You do not want to cross-thread the crown as it can damage the crown tube and it will have to be replaced.
- How to use the diver band extension. This is a small extension on the TAG Heuer diver's watch band which allows for use over a wet suit without resizing the band. With the watch off your wrist, unclasp the extension on the side of the watch clasp and unfold it open. When finished, fold it in and click it back in place, resetting the watch band to the original diameter without resizing it.
- How to use the automatic helium release valve. There is nothing for you to actually do with this feature. It is designed to automatically purge the watch of excess gas when it is under extreme pressure. This is to keep the watch from building up pressure internally and popping the crystal off. Very few divers will actually ever dive deep enough for this feature to even come into play. But if they do, it works automatically.
That is a basic overview of how to use the TAG Heuer Aquaracer 500 Caliber 5 dive watch. It is a fine watch and will serve you well for many years. Enjoy!