Citizen Eco-Drive Watch Review


Citizen has now gone high-tech with a new line of solar powered wristwatches. These new Eco-Drive watches will never need to have the battery replaced. And they come in a wide variety of styles for both men and women.

My brother first introduced me to these cool watches, and after researching them, I just had to have one! I chose the Solar-Tech 180 TITANIUM, (model AP0410-58H). It happens to be a divers watch, and is water-resistant to 200 meters. This quartz watch has a one-way rotating elapsed-time bezel, a screw-down crown, and date. (Although the only time that I have taken a dive is in a hockey game, I wanted a water-resistant watch.)

The main selling feature of these watches is the solar construction. It’s best described by this diagram that I downloaded from the Citizen web site. (See below)

Sunlight and any artificial light are absorbed through the
crystal and dial. CITIZEN uses special filters which allow a wide range of dial colors and

A solar cell beneath the dial converts any form of light into electrical energy to
power the watch. With regular exposure to light, ECO-Drive continuously recharges itself.

ECO-Drive’s revolutionary lithium-ion rechargeable battery stores enough energy to
power the watch up to sixteen months (depending on model)

Ok, so much for the canned science lesson, now let’s review the features. The lithium-ion battery will probably run this watch forever. My watch, a Solar-Tech 180 is designed to run on a full charge for 180 days, (or 6 months). It takes 3.5 hours to charge fully, in sunlight; and 1 minute to charge for one day’s worth of power.

Although I’m not fond of bracelet watches, this watch, being mostly titanium is extremely lightweight and very durable. The finish on the band is very comfortable. I also like the safety clasp they selected.

There is a fluorescent coating on the dial face for the tick marks and the hands. The marks are easy to see in the dark as well as in daylight. There are 27 different men’s styles and 9 different women’s styles. Out of those styles, there are 9 men’s/women’s matched sets.

I’m a bit surprised that it has taken this long for someone to develop a solar watch. I guess that the Lithium-ion battery has made it possible for them to run longer, and recharge to full capacity better. The older technology rechargeable batteries, (ni-cad), had kind of a “memory”, they needed to be almost fully drained to recharge fully. These lithium-ion batteries recharge better when not fully drained.

If you like gadgets and also like watches, you have to check out the ECO-Drive watches from Citizen. As for where to purchase it, you can check web sites like for price comparisons, but be sure to go to a reputable watch dealer. You will need to have the band professionally adjusted, most people will not have the tools to do it themselves.

Price: $395 (retail)

Never needs a battery replaced.
Titanium case and band is extremely lightweight.
Resists water to 200 meters.

Need to have the band professionally adjusted.


Product Information

  • Never needs a battery replaced.
  • Titanium case and band is extremely lightweight.
  • Resists water to 200 meters.
  • Need to have the band professionally adjusted.
Posted in: Watches and Clocks
{ 148 comments… add one }
  • Tim King December 17, 2008, 9:46 am

    I need to Citizen Eco-Drive Watch Instructions #U706. Thank you

  • Andrew December 17, 2008, 10:12 am

    I just bought a Citizen Eco watch myself. Its a Gold toned / diamond dress watch. The look of the watch is amazing and classy. what sold me on it was the fact that it doesnt need a battery, is lightweight , and very comfortable to wear. I highly recommend these watches because of the variety of watches for men and women.

  • Don Damiani January 5, 2009, 3:22 pm

    Hi Julie,

    I was trying to figure out how old this watch is, and I see I wrote this review in January of 1999. I still wear this watch every day, and believe it or not, I have never replaced the battery since I bought it! That’s 10 years without a battery change!

    Hope you are well.


    • Julie January 5, 2009, 3:46 pm

      Hi Don!
      Your review still gets viewed and commented on as you can see! 🙂

  • Mike Farmer January 17, 2009, 4:12 am

    Hi Don.
    Your comment DOES still get commented on!
    Just came across this. Was looking for possibility of getting new battery for mine. It had stopped, but found watch was only discharged! I bought mine in 1994 !! So the technology was quite old when you bought yours!. Mine has worked continuously up until yesterday. Worn every day – except for the last week – and the second hand was `jumping` when I came to wear it, so I am now fully recharging it to see how it goes. I have a feeling it will last me a good few years yet.
    Mine is a full titanium, with original glass.Still looks ALMOST as good as new, and I am sure it is the best watch I will ever buy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  • Tom January 30, 2009, 10:45 am

    I have an identical one, other than gold accents on the bracelet and a gold scheme on the dial and hands. Not the best combination for mixed low-light like in a movie theatre, but I love it. It’s worked flawlessly since 1997 and I’m rough on watches. I’ve surfed, dived (5-10 M) and snorkeled to 40 feet without a leak.

  • Mike Hodge February 13, 2009, 8:07 am

    I have two ECO drive watches and the second hand was `jumping` so I took it to a jeweler to replace the battery (I was not aware my watch did not require a battery) the jeweler replaced the capacitor with a battery and now neither watch will keep time. Hope I did not completely ruin these watches .

  • Jack February 28, 2009, 11:16 am

    These batteries are not forever. I need replacement. My wath is 9 years old.

  • Bob Gibbs February 28, 2009, 5:40 pm

    There is considerable difference in electrical source/flow in a standard watch battery and the Li-on sort of capacitor used in these watches. You can look the correct one up, using the Caliber (model) number, and quite likely install it yourself ($18-25 retail). (Only need good light, back opener, appropriate screw driver, tweezers & a little lubricant for the seal.) Since a standard battery may have ruined the circuitry, might consider a new jeweler as they should have known. P.S. I am not a jeweler but have replaced these and Seiko Kinetics without difficulty) As for the ‘jumping’ not sure about Citizen but a Seiko kinetic will do that when nearly run down or the “capacitor” is bad. Hope this helps.

  • mclure Aromin March 11, 2009, 11:31 pm

    Where is this eco made!

  • Paul March 27, 2009, 2:29 pm

    To those of you have had your Eco Drive watches stop working, did you store it for a long time (weeks/months) in a drawer with no light?

    I’ve had my Eco Drive watch since 2001 and so far it still works perfectly. I work from home and don’t wear it out in the sun most days, but it does sit on the hutch above my desk soaking in the light from the ceiling fan.

    P.S. If you use a Sonicare electric toothbrush, save the old brush heads to clean & polish the crystal & band. Mine really shines after I spend a few minutes polishing it with whitening toothpaste and the Sonicare. (The toothpaste rinses away with no problem.)

  • Amy April 3, 2009, 1:46 pm

    I just purchased myself an Eco Drive watch online and I cannot WAIT to receive it in the mail. Glad to hear the glowing reviews and I hope it’s as beautiful as it looks online!

  • Robert Johnson April 23, 2009, 8:38 pm

    I have an ecodrive watch puchased mid 2005, it now fails to run unless in brightlight. Watch was sent to Citizen for repair and was quoted $250 for the repair…I think in future I will have the normal battery model

  • Mark May 7, 2009, 7:44 am

    I have almost the exact same model that was reviewed. My watch has the gold tone in the links and has a light gold finish in the face, otherwise its the same watch. I have had mine since around late 1997. Over the years this watch has teken quit a bit of abuse, I definately don’t baby it, and the gold plating is starting to wear off the rotating bazel and band links but the watch still runs like the day I bought it. I have bought 2 other watches since but the titanium construction of this watch is very light weight and the matching band makes the watch the most comfortable I have ever ownede, I still wear this one the most.

  • michelle June 9, 2009, 7:35 am

    hey guys n girls,
    if you want to charge your eco if they are not working probably, put it under a lamp for a good couple of hours, make sure it sits pretty close to it. a good lamp like a student desk lamp, not a laundroom one, you want the focus to be on the watch. if this doesnt get it kicking, it will need the capacitor changed, make sure its done probably and not changed with an regular battery, this should cost about $70 and most places have to send it away. if this still does not work then it will be the movement, this is quiet expensive to replace ranging around $300. hope this clears up any unanswered questions. p.s the links are easy. jewelers are there to sell you jewellery most of the time they dont even know how to set your watch, take it to an actual watch place and make sure the person knows what there talkin about ie me. cheers

  • Don Damiani June 13, 2009, 1:34 pm

    Interestingly, I just got a new EcoDrive watch. The old one still works great, (and I still have not changed the battery.) But I wanted one with gold tones. My brother, who buys old and unique watches and repairs them, told me he had a Citizen Model BL5182-51P sitting in the sun on his windowsill for the past year, and he said I could have it if I wanted it. This is the watch:

    It’s an amazing watch, with all sorts of functions. But there are a few things I do not like about it, both related to the band. For one, the gold tone finish on the band is already starting to wear off. (Interestingly, the watch is made in Japan, but the band is made in China.) The other thing about the band I don’t like is that the band tends to pinch the hairs on my wrist a lot. I think it is a design flaw because my other watch has a titanium band, and it is also made in China, but it doesn’t pinch at all.

    Anyway, these are great watches!


  • robert worden June 17, 2009, 8:20 pm

    I have an Eco Drive watch that sat at home for a year while i was gone and now i cant get it to charge. any ideas would be greatly appreciated. thanks

  • Brian June 22, 2009, 5:44 pm

    I recently purchased an eco-drive and love it so far. It is bracelet style, which I generally don’t like, but this is so light I hardly notice it when wearing it. I tried on a Bulova that looked almost identical and it felt like a lead weight around my wrist.

    Glad to hear from others that their’s has run for 10-12 years.


  • happyjay75 July 4, 2009, 7:41 am

    just an info for those who did not know..

    guys.. the jumping on the hand is normal for the eco drive.In case no power is generated, an Eco-Drive Thermo movement will save power by moving the second hand in ten second increments until the production of thermo electricity is resumed. so there is no need to go to a watch repair shop… even if you stock it in a box for years… the battery will still keep the time in the background even if the dial is not moving… and when you started wearing it again… the watch will automatically adjust the time.

  • mw September 11, 2009, 5:24 pm

    Had the watch for a year now, so far so good. Only complaint is the bezel is quite loose – turns too easily if it rubs against pretty much anything (like when i stick my hand in my pockets).

  • gerry October 15, 2009, 4:28 am

    have owned a ecodrive for ten years now wr200 ,its certainly a far superier watch compared to my tudor automatic made by the rolex more sevicing cleaning etc. like japanese cars the reliability is hard to beat

  • Grant Stewart October 28, 2009, 12:19 am

    Eco-Drives are great watches, and Citizen’s five-year warranty is one of the best in the business. Our company specializes in replacing capacitors and doing movement repairs on out of warranty Eco-Drives. The double clicking (two second intervals) is characteristic of low charge, but is also characteristic of a failing capacitor if the watch has had plenty of time to charge. Our capacitor service starts at $59 and movement replacements at $109 with free shipping. We have repaired many Eco-Drives that have had regular silver oxide batteries installed where the capacitor should have been. If you are not like Don and don’t want to do it yourself, give us a try

  • Jeff November 9, 2009, 9:40 am

    The new Eco drive Citizen watches are pieces of garbage. I’ve had 3 this year that just stopped working. The reason they have the 5 year warranty is because they know they are garbage. Don’t buy this over priced luxury item. There are not enough features to justify the price gap.

  • Justin December 10, 2009, 11:29 am

    I’ve owned mine since 2003, and have had zero problems. Certainly not a “piece of garbage”. It has even been stored in no light situations for long periods of time and always recharged and come back to life.

  • Mark December 21, 2009, 2:20 pm

    I just received an Eco-drive as a gift. I haven’t had it resized yet.
    Is it necessary to have the same number of links removed from both sides of the bracelet in order for it to fit properly?

    Also, I’m a stickler when it comes to accurate time. Is there a way to stop the second hand so that I can synchronize it to my radio-controlled clock?

  • Gabby December 29, 2009, 12:20 am


    I just got an Eco-drive as a gift too and had links removed today. I had 2 taken off one side and 1 from the other. Looks & fits great!

  • Jim January 2, 2010, 12:25 am

    I have one an eco drive as well. The one with the blue face and silver band. My wife, who was a gf at the time she bought it, got it as a gift for me at xmas time. Pardon the pun, but as time passed on, we go married and now have a kid and the watch is still worn to this day. The only watch I have owned that actually still works, and is older than my marriage and first born, LOL. The styling is great and I actually have an alarm tone! I want another watch soon, but with this watch still ticking, I find it difficult to find one that is “better” function wise and appearance wise.

  • Don Damiani January 4, 2010, 2:16 pm

    Regarding the links, since they move around on the wrist, I don’t think it matters to remove the same number from both sides. But if you need to remove an uneven number of links, don’t remove them all from the same side.

    Regarding the battery life, I don’t know what to do to get a dead watch to come back to life- other than replacing the battery. When my brother and I bought our watches, (a few months apart), he told me that eventually the battery would need to be replaced. I don’t believe he has replaced his battery either.

    Regarding the energy saving features, my old Citizen watch, (the one in this review) moves the second hand at two second intervals when the battery is low. My new watch will actually not move the second hand at all when the watch is in the dark, then when the watch is exposed to light, the second hand will swing to the position where it would have been if it kept moving. You can see this is you have a long sleeve shirt covering it and then lift up the sleeve to look at the watch.

    Regarding setting the time, I pull the stem out all the way and the second hand stops. Then I use either my cell phone clock, or my computer clock to set the time. I find it interesting that we care so much about how accurate it is. When I was growing up, if you asked me for the time, I would say, “half past”, or “quarter of”. When digitals came out, we gave the exact time, (“It’s 2:13”.) I don’t remember my first watches even having a second hand. 🙂

    Finally, for those of you with gold tone watches, have you seen any wear on the finish? Both of my watches have wear in the same places, (probably due to where my wrist is while typing). I notice the finish has completely worn off on the gold tone watch in certain places under my wrist. It’s the same with the titanium watch, but the wear is not noticeable because of the color of the band.

  • Ron Damiani January 4, 2010, 6:07 pm

    I thought I bought my watch in 1997 but Don’s review makes me think we got them in 1999. This is the model I bought:

    The case is one piece. I don’t know how to access the inside to change the battery or capacitor, I guess it comes out through the front if you remove the bezel and crystal. The only problem I had was that after a year, I tore the strap. Instead of paying $25 for a new band rubber strap, I opted to pay $50 for a stainless steel band made specifically for that watch. After 10 years, I probably would have gone through 5-6 rubber straps by now.

    I’m not sure if the new ones are not as well buildt as the older ones. Mine is a tank! Very rugged. I have worked on a few and when I took the backs off of some of them I saw too many plastic gears. They seemed kind of cheap, but I also see plastic gears in some expensive Seikos. I think I just like the idea of a watch needing virtually no maintenance for 10 years. 🙂 I still recommend them to anyone wanting a new watch. There are hundreds of styles and the $300 model I bought 10 years ago can be reasonablly purchased today for half that price.

    BTW, a few years ago, my watch stopped keeping the proper reserve, and now as long as it is in the light, it works, but put it in the dark and it will stop in a day or so.


  • bavel January 18, 2010, 5:30 pm

    my Eco Drive just arrived and it looks stunning, I cant wait to get it charge and use it..

  • Derek January 20, 2010, 1:36 pm

    I’m just now looking at getting my new Citizen BN0055-53E in the next day or two. I’ve been impressed with my reading of the “Eco-drive”, which I’ve had similarly in some G-shocks I’ve kept. It’s called “Tough Solar” in G-shocks. I’ve had Seikos which I’ve loved, and I keep three of them. From what I’ve noticed Citizens are compareable in quality and range to Seikos. I shall follow this up after a little time of use with the new one.

    It does seem odd to have such contrasting impressions of the Citizen watch. From what I’ve gathered, it’s the rare exception to the rule to have one crap out with the charging or anything else. Personally I like to stick to the older brands. I think you take fewer chances that way. Seiko and Citizen have been around for a long time, years before WWII. Lots of inovation and precison developed over that time. To me there’s more of a weight on the basic timepiece and less on fashion trends. A good design is supposed to be above that in my opinion. I also appreciate how these brands are reasonably priced. To me it makes more sense to have several really decent looking watches to wear than just one being massively expensive, and still be spending much less. Less pretense is a good thing too.

  • tempo dulu January 25, 2010, 5:53 am

    I’d rather go for a Seiko kinetic. More class.

  • Marty February 27, 2010, 3:45 am

    Bought a Citizen Eco-Drive Calibre BL9000-59F. Beautiful watch but I can’t get the damn thing to hold a proper charge. I’ve set it out in a window on a hot summer day and wake up the next morning to find it dead. This was a brand new watch that cost me $400. It’s about two years old and I got lots of compliments on it when I wore it. I just wish the damn thing would work so I don’t have to rock this Seiko quartz.

  • mack April 2, 2010, 4:16 pm

    I have this exact watch and I love it. I picked it up in late ’98. stored it for a year or more and it discharged. I remember the manual saying not to put it under direct light to speed up charging; ambient light only. the bezel broke about 7 yrs ago and had it replaced- might have been done under warranty. I used to spin it all the time when I couldn’t smoke so I think that wear is reasonable. the rivet on the clasp broke about 4 years ago which was $60 to replace. right now its in the shop getting all the pins replaced because a few are stretched and theirs big gaps and the conecting ‘U’s at the case rotate around the pin freely. I think a lot of my wear and tear is from wearing it around the clock. I really like the dark tone of this watch. Most ti watches now are brighter. When it was new it looked sandblasted or matte which I miss. I think citizen’s quality may have declined just like everything else. I never had an issue with the watch itself.

  • Neil Morris April 6, 2010, 8:48 am

    I’ve had an eco-drive for (?) years and now it stops if I take it off!!! It keeps running fine if I’m wearing it, but as soon as I take it off it stops after an hour or two.
    Any advice?

  • chris April 19, 2010, 12:08 pm

    Got a watch just like the one at the top of this page from a freind the other day and the knob that is used to set the watch pushes in and I don’t. Know what its for can some one please help

  • Nilesh April 25, 2010, 7:20 am


    Could you please help to know where i wil get the best deal for any Eco drive wrist watch in paris. and wat would be the cost around?

  • EAN April 30, 2010, 9:28 am

    Mine was stored in a box for a few months and stopped working. I put it in sunlight all day for two days. It’s back to keeping great time today
    after sitting all night. Don’t give up on it. Just keep charging until it keeps time.

  • mike May 16, 2010, 10:30 am

    citizen is a sleazy company. i bought the titanium eco-drive and after about a year noticed fogging on inside of crystal–sent it in and they supposedly repaired it. a year later moisture was back–deepest dive had been 3 feet in swimming pool. sent it back (still under warranty ) and they claimed someone had unscrewed crown and damaged it–they were the only ones who had ever serviced the watch but they wanted approx $200.00 to repair it. i threw it in a drawer and make it a practice to alert everyone i can to their outstanding customer non-support. i previously had a citizen dive watch that cost close to $600.00 and when it quit working after about 5 years ,i sent it to the company–they said they no longer serviced that model ??? but would give me a discount on the eco-drive—so i foolishly bought it.

  • Jeff May 21, 2010, 4:07 pm

    I recently purchased a Citizen Eco-drive watch. I would never have been able to figure it out without good directions. It is absolutely accurate regarding how well it keeps time. I synchronized it with the atomic clock online and it has been perfect for the 2 weeks I have had it.
    My Eco-drive watch is a chronograph which allows me to use it as a stop-watch. It also keeps track of a second time zone and keeps leap-year information stored.
    After using the chronograph to time an event, when I switch it back to regular time function, it automatically adjusts back to the correct time without any further setting.
    This is an amazing watch by any measure. Considering it will run forever just on the light in an average office, it is even more amazing! I am definitely a fan of this technology.

  • Craig Winnerman June 12, 2010, 11:26 am

    I just sent this to Citizen customer support. Waiting to see their response.

    Subject:Once a loyal Citizen Customer

    I have had 3 Citizen Titanium Eco-Drive watches over the past 10 years and am very disappointed. While I love the styling, accuracy, perpetual calendar, and water resistance quality, the bands are horrid and you should be ashamed of the quality.
    The first one broke while I was in the car and fell out the window. Lost forever. Bought another one and after 3 years the band broke as well and not on an adjustable link. E710-H26188 TA 060418 Japan GN-4-S. Went to Sears as they are an authorized dealer. They said the band is repairable and new band is over $150. Bought another E760-H30211 TA 240073 Japan GN-4-S. Within 3 years the band has broken in an repairable location.
    I cannot afford to be replacing a watch every 3 years. I am limited to a stock band with the way the casing is made as an aftermarket band will not fit. Watch might be made in Japan, but noticed on both bands that I have that have broken were made in China. A Timex would hold up better than this.
    Just wanted to advise you on the low quality of your bands produced in China that makes your good watches useless.

  • F Martin Cassino August 3, 2010, 12:13 pm

    Bad support after sales

    I sent to repair the EcoDriver of my wife, it has moisture inside (Even if it is water resistant), not only they charge us to clean and replace gaskets, now after another splash it has moisture again.
    I am really deceived.

  • mytmanfred October 2, 2010, 6:19 pm

    Amen to the problem with the lousy bands on these nice watches.

    China makes crap………………..period. Citizen, using bands made in China, makes me wonder about the future of the Japanese watch market.

    I never expected to buy a Citizen watch and end up with a cheap, piece-of-crap Chinese watch band.

  • KeepsOnTicking October 13, 2010, 2:30 am

    I have the same model as the main article which I bought in 1998 and the thing just wont give up. I swear this thing is bulletproof. Gotta love that it’s titanium and weighs close to nothing …

  • Jack December 15, 2010, 3:04 am

    Can ANYONE Help me here?
    I bought one of the Eco-Drive Citizen Watches last year sometime – But the stupid Crown KEeps MOVING on me – I never know if the ‘time’ is really the Time, or if the Crown has moved a hair and It’s now showing me The Alarm Time, or the L-TM (different time zone time) – – It’s been like this since The First Day.
    mw September 11, 2009 at 5:24 pm – – Said the ‘bevel’ was moving, and if that’s the samething as The Crown, – and I’m betting it is since I am NOT the first person with this problem.
    And Citixen MUST know about this issue since:
    1.) the date MW posted was around the same time I got mine… and I did see other reviews Before I bought it (I know, I know) but I was “hoping” mine would be Different! (ya, right)
    2.) AND the review I left of MY Watch has been added to Another Eco-Drive Citizen Watch – The one “I” reviewed by name they no longer are selling or showing – I JUST NOW saw that after someone posted a reply and I noticed the picture had changed.
    odd, right??

    So if Citizen KNOWS they have a problem with their turny-things, i.e. the Crowns or Bevels on some of their eco-drive perpetual calander watches (mines got the alarm, T-LM, etc on the bottom round circle at the 6 – Between 12-3 is a White-Circle 2,4,6,8,0 to set the leap year for the perpetual stuff – and at the 9 circle is military time. All Good features! Plus great blue face And Chronographed. With solid clicks even, goes just the one way. All Good – In fact I LOVE This Thing!!

    If it could Only TELL The TIME when I look at it, it’d be the best watch ever! I explained it’s details since I’ve forgotten now what it’s Citizen number/name is.

    So The Question if it got lost or too long:
    Sincre I bought it online someplace – I’m screwed, right?
    OR.. Since Citizen MUST know about these bad batches of Crowns, turning when your hands in your pocket.. watch just ‘touches’ the wrist – put a jacket on it moves 2 functions over! It might turn if I blew on it hard enough it’s a real Problem! Is there a Place I can go – Like when a Car has a Recall – Anything like that with watches – or over 300$ Citizen watches??

    Appreciate ANY Help here, Please.
    I have a picture of it, but hard to find them for sale Now, 10 momnths later Someone has gotten the point – so That Should mean THEY know, yes? But are ‘They’ the right theys that will fix it for free – or am I looking at a 100$ out of pocket crown -work?

    I tried glueing the crown once, losing every Extra function just so I could use it as a Watch! – But the clear glue came off in the water.. plus when I would look at it i still didnt know for sure if it was The Time or if the glue rubbed off. This Sucks. I have an expensive (to me its a huge amount!) watch with lots of Great Features but I never know if the time on it is even close. Ridiculous. My first ‘non walmartish’ watch too. First try at something worth while.
    Anyone Know What I Should or Could Do Here?
    and thanks in advance.

    But it LOOKS Great!
    I saw

  • Reynard Foxe January 3, 2011, 8:59 pm

    I have had my ecodrive for about 15 years and I love it but now the capacitor needs to be replaced and it costs $89. New ecodrive? $107 . Ok there is no battery, but the capacitor that replaces it does and it’s expensive. And a new crystal is $70.
    If anyone knows of a less expensive repair, please let me know as I am sentimental about this excellent watch.

  • Chris January 6, 2011, 8:02 pm

    I took my generic watch to the local pawnshop today to replace the battery and band (decent pawnshops are good for this). The nice lady said it would take a couple of days, would I like a loaner in the meantime? Sure. She led me to their $20 case. A nice watch in the case seemed to fit, so I took it back to the office. For fun I googled it and found it is a 10 year old Ecodrive that originally retailed for $375. Walked back down the street to the pawnshop and told the nice lady that it seemed to fit real well, I’d like to buy it for the $20. She was happy she made a sale! So am I!

  • Roy January 7, 2011, 3:07 am

    Reynard, I’m in the same boat. I bought this back in 2007: and the watch was beginning to run slow recently, so I sent it in for repair. Citizen just quoted me $80 plus shipping to overhaul the movement; nothing about a bad capacitor.

    I have a 27 year old Seiko Speedmaster that still runs like a champ, so I’m very disappointed with the longevity of the Citizen. While I never believed that the Citizen would be maintenance free for life, I expected the movement to at least last a bit longer.

    So do I toss the Citizen and buy a Seiko Black Monster for an extra $120, or pay for the repair cost? Since the repair cost only amounts to less than $7 for each of the last 14 years I’ve used the Citizen, maybe it’s not such a bad tradeoff.

  • Hanging Judge January 23, 2011, 1:37 pm

    Just purchased a new Citizen Eco-drive ladies for my wife EW9010-54A. I wanted to give her something that would be trouble and maintenance free, and look great. Well, it was keeping perfect time when I opened the box, but overnight it quit and it won’t start again. This after exposing it to hours of daylight, mostly cool, direct sun. (It’s winter here.) So on top of all the complaints written here about the cheap bands, I have to say the watch is pretty cheap too, having quit after less than a day!! Glad she didn’t have a chance to re-size it yet.

  • Guy January 31, 2011, 12:57 am

    Ive had the solar tech 180 blue dial TT since they came out ! It got lost in a drawer here for iam not kidding 12 yrs I stuck it under a light for a few days and the thing is back running just fine ! I own 2 Citizen Eco Drives and have never had either one not charge back up but I guess it could happen !

    I have the 180 and the new Calibre 2100 that they claim is hand assembled !

  • Guy January 31, 2011, 3:23 am

    I would also like to add one more thing the 20 yr old soloar tech bracelet is made in Japan and the new Calibre 2100 bracelet is made in China but both are very well made high quality and I doubt I have a problem with them in my life time . Thats just my 2 cents ymmv of course . I always have my watch dude check any new watch I buy for bracelet problems and he told me the new Calibre 2100 bracelet was solid as a rock and there was no need for him to do anything . I have on other watches had him put in bigger pins and things but the Citzens are rock solid .

  • Guy January 31, 2011, 3:51 am

    I know another post :O) but I have a ? I bought my Echo Drive solar tech 180 close to the day they were first released and it does not say Titanium on the dial BUT it is TT I can tell by the weight ! Anyone ever see one like that and does anyone know what yr these came on the market I would kina like to know . I bought it to replace an expencive Omega Seamaster someone stole out of my wife purse she was taking it in for a cleaning for me . My 180 is a tank of a watch . For that matter so is the new one a Calibre 2100 Echo Drive I bought a couple yrs ago .B U T ful watch IMHO . I love the power meter on the new one . I also recomend having any watch you buy at any price taken to a watch dude and have him ck the bracelet pins even some $10.000 watches can and do have bracelet problem now and then even new ones . Just have him or her make sure the pins are secure and clasp and you should never have a problem he can put wider stronger pins in if needed fairly cheap osmetimes it only requires him to use a punch set to secure them better and that way you will never have one fall of your arm from a lose pin .

  • Jesse February 8, 2011, 4:54 pm

    Nice watches, company doesn’t stand behind product! I wouldn’t recommend!

  • ME February 14, 2011, 4:49 pm

    I have 2 eco drives and had them stored for 6 months after my house flooded…there is a reset function that I had to preform on one of them because it was “jumping” also. Go to the Citizen website for details…perpetual calender models are model specific and all others are quite simple…just pull crown out to time adjustment for 30 seconds and reset time. Worked on mine…hope this saves some of you some time and money.

  • Roy February 15, 2011, 7:58 pm

    Citizen couldn’t guarantee their servicing would fix my problem because they no longer have a replacement movement. They were going to try to refurbish using cannibalized parts from other watches. I decided against the repair, and instead invested the money in a new Seiko automatic mechanical watch. No more issues with batteries, capacitors or any other electronic components. I won’t buy another solar-powered watch ever again.

  • Jose February 24, 2011, 5:03 pm

    “Never needs a battery replaced” is not true. My Titanuim eco drive is 9 years old and now it do not retain charge. I should replace secondary battery and the distributor charge me more than one hundred dollars for repair it.

  • mur_phy March 8, 2011, 12:06 am

    Mine is the Titanium Solar Tech 180 and I obtained it from a friend 10 years ago and it had been used I believe a couple years. Never had an issue with it. Time is not dead on but few watches are and if it is a minute or so fast, all well and good. Before I obtained this watch, I had been unable to wear a watch for a few years as the “gold” on most watches — straps/frames– would cause a rash and itching. Titanium being inert does not cause any issue so hopefully this watch will last many years still. I wear the watch daily and am generally indoors and the watch is off my arm when sleeping and no issues with charging at all. Would search out a replacement if I ever need to but hopefully that will not be necessary.

  • Bill March 16, 2011, 11:07 am

    I’m one of those people you may have heard about who seem to generate an unusually strong electromagnetic field. Over the years I have killed countless spring-driven and battery-powered wristwatches within months just by wearing them, and had almost given up on watches altogether when I bought an Eco-Drive to celebrate my son’s birth. He’s almost 14 now and the watch has performed perfectly until just a couple of weeks ago when I saw the “jumping hand” for the first time. If I leave the watch lying around in a cool room overnight it seems to affect the capacitor and the watch sometimes stops (it’s only happened 3 times so far), but starts again as soon as I put the watch on and it absorbs my body heat. My watch is stainless steel, yet still lightweight and completely comfortable. I had 2 links removed from the band when I bought the watch, and have had no problems whatsoever with it. In fact I love the locking mechanism the band uses. I have worn this watch almost constantly for nearly 14 years in all situations, including outdoors doing yard work and on camping trips. My Eco-Drive is one of the best purchases I have ever made and I wouldn’t give it up for any other watch. If I ever lose it, I will immediately buy another.

  • JV March 20, 2011, 1:21 am

    Thank you, ME. Resetting the watch by adjusting the date and time got the watch working properly again. Since I left it in the light and the second hand still kept skipping, I thought it was the capacitor.

  • my April 14, 2011, 12:18 pm

    Can anybody tell me what is battery life of ECO drive watches.

    Because Citizen eco drive website claims that that battery will go fo 22 years.

  • forest sanborn August 14, 2011, 12:36 pm

    I just got a eco drive for my b-day i love the watch but the second hand stops at 12 every few hrs or so..the time stays correct do i fix.

  • jlk August 20, 2011, 8:45 pm

    I also purchased this watch 9 years ago and have never changed anything but the time ,,Great watch…….

  • balut September 11, 2011, 10:41 am

    the hubby has this exact same watch, bought in 1997. he has been wearing it everyday since then and thanks to the sapphire glass which makes it scratch-proof, it still looks like new to this day. battery has never been replaced!

    love these watches; i own 3 ladies eco-drives. the one i bought in 2002 stopped recharging in 2010 but its working like new again after a capacitor replacement. great watches!

  • Daniel September 21, 2011, 4:38 am

    Can’t believe this article is still viewed.

    I have 2 Citizen Eco-Drive watches. The one I chose for my 21st in 2007 (it’s also titanium, similar to the one in the article…just a “newer model” you can say; it’s an e100-s011922). And I just had to get another so that I could choose which I’d like to wear for the day. So I got the BT0001-55L just 4 days ago, which has a perpetual calender and just has a different look to my other.
    I’ve never experienced low charge or anything, and hope for many many years still. Lovely, quality watches.

  • Naiomi Shimmin October 10, 2011, 3:56 pm

    Me and my husband received a Citizen eco drive each as wedding presents nearly ten years ago and both are still going strong!
    I wear mine more for special occasions and just make sure it as some light when not being worn and it as worked fine and kept fantastic time. My husband as worn his almost everyday, as a result some of the gold finish as worn off, so have just ordered this new one for him
    Hopefully he will get as much use out of it as his old one

  • Phil November 3, 2011, 2:59 pm

    Great until you have to change the time/date then completely impossible to set. How difficult can it be. Rubbish.

  • Olga November 22, 2011, 3:16 pm

    Hi! I just bought a Citizen CA0080-03E, it is a gift so I am not taking it out of box (transparent). The long, thin second arm is not moving though, while the two others are, same case with the little arrow on the bottom of the watch. is it just due to empty battery, or should I get it replaced? Thanks!

  • Pharcyde November 25, 2011, 11:56 am

    I have a Men’s Blue Angel Skyhawk that I purchased about 9 yrs ago… This watch was a favorite as it was great for both diving and travel. unfortunately It’s been in for repair ($150) and gradually was not keeping acurate time and finally about a year ago stopped working all together (I tried charging in sunlight, lamplight & flashlight) LOL… I really like the watch but don’t want to spend another $150+ getting it repaired… For me replacing a battery (I have another nice watch that has lasted longer and the battery has been replaced 1 time @ a watch repair shop for $30)… I think I’ll stick to the more traditional watched that need batteries… :^(

  • Lucky December 13, 2011, 11:52 am

    Got Citizen eco as gift 2 years ago, has laid in drawer and not worn much. Now after sitting in the sunlight and lamp light it won’t stay running for any length of time. The second hand jumps 2 minutes at a time, odd? How long is the warranty? It still looks like new but won’t stay running. What a shame. What to do?

  • ckyjohn December 18, 2011, 12:37 pm

    I have had three now in the past 6 years (last two were presents). The first was only worn for special occasions and lasted about a year and then the adjustment pin came off when I adjusted the time. It still worked for about 6 months after that (with the wrong time) and then quit completely. The second lasted about a year and quit. The third stopped last week after about 2 years of fairly steady usage. I would not buy another and wanted to let others know they are nice to look at but are problematic. Bulova Precisionist will be my next watch.

  • Jason December 25, 2011, 9:08 pm

    I bought an eco-drive for my wife for Christmas. I can’t say how dissapointed I am. It does NOT work. We have had it under my piano light for several hours and it does NOT work. The hands will not move. I have changed the time several times, pulling the setting button in an out several tmes. It simply will not go. I buy cheap watches from WalMart because I migt damage them at work. I have never had one that didn’t work. The first time I buy an eco-drive, it doesn’t work, right out the box. WHAT a Huge dissapointment, especially for Christmas.

  • Donna May 15, 2012, 11:58 pm

    I’ve had a ladies titanium Eco drive for probably close to 10 years, perhaps more. It’s NEVER quit working. I used to go through batteries every couple months in regular watches no matter where I got the batteries. Got fed up and my mom bought me a Cititzen for my birthday. Best watch ever! Cleans up with soap and water and I’ve never had to actually put mine in the light, it must charge enough with daily wear.

  • barry conn May 17, 2012, 6:42 pm

    I bought my Solartech 180 back in 1996 and it recently began to stop if left in the dark.
    A quick hunt around the Internet may have found the answer – you have to charge the watch fully, then unscrew the crown and pull the adjuster out to the last position. Leave it like this for at least 30 seconds to perform a full reset (this is important), then use normally.
    It’s working for me – I’ve left it in absolute blackness several nights to see if it dies, but it seems to be completely back to normal.

    Worth a try…

  • JG July 14, 2012, 7:04 am

    DO NOT BUY Citizen Eco-Drive junk! With a battery watch, you replace the battery every five years, with Eco-Junk, you replace the capacitor every 5 years. $10 versus $150, your choice. There should be a class action suit due to the way these watches were promoted. True automatic watches do not store energy in a battery- batteries do not last forever. The downside is that a true automatic must be worn at least every other day or it will stop.

  • Ron July 29, 2012, 6:31 pm

    My ECO drive Citizin solar-tech divers watch died on me, after almost 13 years. Can not find any dealer in the netherlands with the right type of MT-920 Li-Ion cel to replace (special conector on the bottom side of the cell) . And shipping from overseas is not cheap (for somthing that almost ways nothing)

  • Jianerix Ilo September 19, 2012, 12:35 pm

    I still have my Solartech 180 and working perfectly. I have it since 1998! Very durable watch!

  • Jianerix Ilo September 19, 2012, 12:39 pm

    Err typo error, it was 1997, my wedding year ^_^

  • Pata Negra December 12, 2012, 12:08 pm

    I have the same exact watch reviewed. I’ve had it since 1997/1998 (can’t remember) and it’s been really reliable. I’ve had the capacitator changed in 2009 but other than that, it’s been great.

  • gordon December 22, 2012, 12:41 am

    like most comments I read in this forum I agree. I spent 380.00 for this beautiful watch, and had the battery replaced once! 150.00 to replace. What a waist of money! This new batter lasted about 1/3 the time the new one did! If anyone knows of a good resource to purchase a new battery, I’ll fix it myself the next time.

  • Ed December 23, 2012, 1:49 pm

    I just bought the AT 4010 50e.
    I want to charge it fully. The watch has an indicator that should show if watch is fully charged. I have had the watch under a light or sitting on dash for five days and the charge indicator has not moved.

    My question is do I have a problem

  • del March 17, 2013, 9:02 pm

    I have purchased 2 of woman citizen watches, first one worked for 5 years no problem until batteries had to be replaced , we have sent it to its own Citizen centre but they could not fix and my husband bought me another new one also eco-drive which i was happy until again the battery problem after 5 years and needed to send to them again and have no news after 2 months. So i would assume there is not need to buy any of citizen watches for me.So disappointed on my well spent money…

  • vanessa j wright June 13, 2013, 1:43 pm

    I bought a citizen pro-master ‘tough’ (ray Mears) £400 for my husband in 2002. It worked OK for 7 years and then stopped. We had a hectic few years and then one day we thought we would get it fixed. Big problem. Although the advertising claimed. “this watch is unstoppable” and is “going places” and “will never need winding or a battery” the fault was with the charge capacitor. We got bounced around all over the place to find a repairer for a watch that looked in new condition, without a scratch. Citizen UK didn’t want to know at all and just suggested that we sort things out for ourselves.

    £400 (in 2002) is not a kings ransom for a time piece but it is not cheap either and it would not be unreasonable to expect it to last a little bit longer without being written off. We eventually found somebody to take it on. It cost £80 to get going again and lasted all of two weeks before stopping.

    Watches should be expected to last a lifetime with care and maintenance unless they are sold as disposable or throw away. This watch and all the citizen watches of their ilk are sold on the basis of longevity.

    I have looked at the wording of their advertisements and often wonder how they are getting away with it.

    If your sentimental like me and you think of buying your hero a similar watch, forget it, pay a bit more and get a jeweled movement item than can be maintained for a lifetime. Don’t get attached to something that claims to get something it is not and has all the real credibility of a broken of a toaster.

  • jody September 9, 2013, 5:19 pm

    just bought a couple citizen gold watches for my wife and myself..i know about the gold color finish wearing off with time from guitars i have owned,and they were not cheap ones. they are gibsons. the gold wears off from touching the tuner machines or whatever hardware is plated on my guitars from the acids in the skin.. nothing can be done about it except to wipe off the piece after touching it..

  • vanessa j wright September 10, 2013, 5:43 pm

    What in the name of all that is holy was the last comment about????

  • vanessa j wright September 10, 2013, 5:46 pm

    These watches are bollocks

  • Eddie December 29, 2013, 11:13 pm

    Vanessa j Wright, you are right on the button. I too brought a Ray Mears Tough new, replaced the capacitor in 2009, four years later, same problem. Citizen, hang your head in shame. I am getting the run around now with the advice they no longer have parts to support this model yet there are identical but alternate branded versions ones currently available (less the single molded case and sapphire glass) – for Gods sake, it’s a time piece and not an overly complicated one at that. No Citizen, I do not want a discount over 25 – 30% on a new piece – I want my “tough” watch supported and fixed as it should be for the money and features you advertised. My alternative Oris auto is proving a lot more dependable so far… Not happy.

  • Vanessa j wright December 30, 2013, 11:59 am

    Well said Eddie. I tried calling up Citizens service centre in the UK. I got through to some snotty bloke who had no sympathy whatsoever. He was adamant that the charge capacitors were never at fault. He claimed that other service companies were falsley claiming the charge caqpacitors were faulty to make a quick buck. I wish I had recorded the conversation it was absurd at best.

    Then he said what do you expect from a watch of this age. I pointed out the advertising claims which I considered went beyond ‘puffery’ or exageration. I said what is the point of having a 100 perpetual calender if the watch has to be thrown away after ten years and anyway, the watch had spent most of its time not working.

    You can buy vintage sieko divers watches from the early 80’s that you can have serviced for life and they still look cool and are appreciating in value. I wish I had gone down that route and would advise anybody considering buying a watch as a gift to go down that route.

    This Eco drive is the same as yours, a watch that Citizen claimed was the strongest that they had ever manufactured. The only replacement is a watch that has royal marine commando plastered all over it.

    We still have the watch, it looks as good as new, it is such a shame. Perhaps we could get another movement or caliber put into it.



  • mur_phy December 30, 2013, 4:31 pm

    I posted a number of years ago at how good the Echo Drive solar tech 180 was and now 12 1/2 years after buying it used it is still working like a charm. Best watch I have ever owned. Nice part is that it is Titanium so does not affect my skin. Hope it lasts until I no longer need a watch. Not a fancy watch but serviceable and non-allergenic — perfect!!!

  • Vanessa j wright December 31, 2013, 3:52 am

    Lucky you, but judging by how many companies offer after warranty replacements for the charge capacitor amongst other parts, there are a significant number of people who do not share your experience!

    Put it this way, if you had mine or eddie’s experience what would your post look like here?

    Advertising claims are just that I know. ‘puffery’ and are seperate from a warranty. But Citizen have stretched what is reasonably acceptable I think.

    This watch will never need a battery or need winding but it will need charge capacitors

    This watch is unstoppable Ho, hum

    This watch is going places repairers

    It will last forever powered by solar energy, etc, etc, etc again, Ho, hum

    And for their staff to be in denial of the capacitor fault is at best negligent. You call their UK service dept and see what they say..

  • BJ January 13, 2014, 4:52 pm

    I’m going to vent my great unease with Citizen every chance I get. First — Always “forever” for the battery is crap. Leave the watch out of the sun for 6 months and you get a serious repair bill. Citizen Customer Support is arrogant — couldn’t care less. Note***** I would not ever wear one of these watches, even if it were given to me. I hate this product, period. Their customer support just stinks.

  • vanessa wright January 14, 2014, 5:42 am

    Quite right BJ, when I called up the UK service centre, their attitude stunk!

    If we sold watches with the claims they make and then let people down in the way they do, we would be heavily penalised.

    I’m thinking of starting a facebook page so that people have SOMWHERE to post their experiences. What do you think?


  • Jim D. February 17, 2014, 6:22 pm

    I have a Citizen watch that is about 13 years old. It has sat on my dresser for quite a while and hadn’t worked for a bit. I put it by a lamp in my bathroom and it started working, only to have the second hand stop by morning once it was dark again. I wore it to work, very sunny day today, and in the car with the sun shining on it, everything worked fine. Once I got into my office, second hand worked for an hour then stopped but the watch hour and minute hands kept time. I have it sitting under a desk lamp again as I think because it sat for so long, it needs to fully charge up before working normally. If it needs a new capacitor, in the trash it goes.

  • vanessa wright February 18, 2014, 4:41 am

    Does your watch have a misleading 100yr perpetual calender. Did it cost over 400 GBP in 2000. Was it sold with the slogan (puffery apparently) “This watch is un-stoppable” etc… Has your watch worked less than it has functioned in that time. Was it bought for someboby and has, or did have tremendous sentimental value. Did somebody by the watch for you thinking they had made a considered and clever purchase that refelcted the care they had for the person they where buying it for on the basis of gross ‘puffery’….

    Yeah, just chuck it away…

  • Jack February 23, 2014, 5:33 pm

    I bought my qife a Citizens Eco-Drive of which it quit last year adn I carried it to t repair place to get it fixed. He told me it was fixed but now if I take it out from under a lamp light it will quit in a little while. I’ve had it under this light now for about 3 days now the watch STINKS! Who leaves their watches in a light all te time????? Not a good watch I would not recomend it to anyyone

  • Mike March 6, 2014, 2:54 pm

    I purchased a stainless model in 1999 and it has worked non-stop for 15 years. I replaced the crystal a couple of years ago because I hardly ever take it off.

    My wife wants me to get a new watch but I’m proud of my old watch and is one of the few things that I spent good money on that I haven’t had to throw away because it was junk.

    A very good watch. I would buy another Citizen in a heart beat.

  • vanessa wright March 6, 2014, 5:06 pm

    Lucky you mike, your watch is doing what citizen claimed it should do, Have a thought for all the customers who feel cheated and have the opposite experience.

    You never know, your next Citizen eco drive might be a lemon and so you can join me here!

  • Dale May 2, 2014, 10:25 am

    I’ve owned two.. both have broken multiple times and the last time, was told they no longer make parts (the watch is seven years old).

    I’ll never waste another dime on these pieces of crap.

    Buy a Seiko.

  • vanessa wright May 6, 2014, 7:20 am

    Quite right Dale, you would be better off buying a classic seiko divers. Something with a jeweled movement maybe that could be maintained. Some people are so brainwashed with built in obsolecence that they seem to think that nothing deserves to last if it is below some undefinable value.

    Same people can also be very smug, “It hasn’t happened to me, I’m perfectly happy”, No cause for concern then!

    Why something should not be expected to last a lifetime with maintaince is beyond me.

    Timex jeweled watches where cheap, but now they are collectors items and have lasted with negligible servicing.


  • mur_phy May 6, 2014, 12:06 pm

    I have posted here a few years ago with a positive review of the watch and some years later still feel the same. I have worn some type of watch for 60 years or more and so far this watch has lasted me the longest, kept reasonably accurate time and best of all because it is titanium, I don’t have the skin rash I would get with other metal bracelets. My wife has a couple of similar watches by Citizen and they are working perfectly fine too. Will the watch last forever? I don’t know and it is not critical as the prices of the watch has come down so drastically from the original asking price (although I bought mine from another person who had used it for a couple of years and I have used mine for 12 years) it will not be an issue as long as the watch is still available for purchase.

  • vanessa wright May 6, 2014, 12:55 pm

    Well Murphy, If you have put your comment in before, you have said your piece, what else is there to add?

    The point is murphy, that some of us across the globe don’t share your experience – unfourtunatly.

    Some of us have had shoddy after sales, shoddy backup, poor response or none from Citizen and overall have felt cheated.

    I’m sure most of us have seen your comment and good luck to you. Mine was the toughest watch ever made, according to Citizen, but it spent less time working than it did stopped in the first eight years of it’s life.

    Whats the point of re-sharing a comment you made earlier, yes we get it, your very pleased. Good for you. However, this is the same situation as where a car manufacturer knows there is a fault with their cars. Do they recall them, do they issue a warning, what do they do?

    Citizen knows damn well that this problem exists and is choosing to ignore it.

  • Robert June 8, 2014, 4:01 am

    Anybody know where I can get just the power pack for an E110 K16385 CKWT? I’ve had the watch for years but it was in storage and I lost the power cell. Was stupid and took it out, so now the watch kind of, well, LURCHES when put under a light source. Help would be GREATLY appreciated.

  • watchfreak January 30, 2015, 7:16 pm

    Ive worn my eco drive nesr daily 3yrs ,been knocked bumped shallow water and my work watch (im in building industry) ,never failed me ,its the bm6400 e111 tough model 200m wr. Im buying another ,everythig is good about this watch model the band the case the dial ,dates a bit small tho . Seems like theres more working citizen watches than duds ,im buying more eco drive models in the future ,even5 yrs on te wrist good to me .

    • Vanessa Wright January 31, 2015, 4:06 am

      Glad to know you do not own a dud! My watch cost £415 in 1999. I was told it would never need batteries, it would never need winding, it was going places and was un-stoppable. No mention that you will need new charge capacitors eventually and then if like me you are really un-lucky, after one change, it cannot be done again when it stops once more because…………. Citizen have changed the caliber of the watch.

      No comeback to the original capacitor changer because, get this. They do not offer a guarantee even though you were told to go to someone not belonging to Citizen, by Citizen because they did not recognize this failure at that time.

      In fact, if you ring up their service centre in the UK, you can speak to a snotty technician who seems to think the whole thing is made-up, which flies in the face of reality.

    • Vanessa Wright January 31, 2015, 9:29 am

      Why don’t you buy two watchers at a time and then you could have twice the satisfaction.

      Manufacturer sells dud watches but they are ‘outnumbered’ by ‘good’ watches????

      Good job Citizen don’t make pacemakers then innit?

      • watchfreak May 26, 2015, 2:31 am

        You obviously received a dud ,take it back to where you purchased it. Every comment ive read about eco drive has been positive ,maybe your problem isnt the watch .

        • vanessa wright May 26, 2015, 4:39 am

          No, it was not a dud. It functioned fine for four years.

          Then it stopped. Shortly after, we contacted Citizen who said that it was beyond warranty.

          Some research online mentioned the growing problem of failed charge capacitors. Also, there were some service centres that offered to replace the charge capacitor.

          At that time, there were few in existence as the eco drive watches were only then begining to fail en mass.

          We found one in Hockley Birmingham.

          The charge capacitor was replaced and the watch funtioned for 6 months and then stopped again.

          We contacted Citizen again. A nice man at the service centre seemed to be in complete denial of this fault and in fact lied about the need for ‘some’ watches needing this repair. He said that the usual cause for the watches failing were other reasons. Despite the now burgoning industry of centres offering capacitor replacement’s and even online guides and supplies. Nope, he insisted that the service centres were all just ripping people off. Oh, OK………..

          So, how about changing the movement we thought.. No can do, the calibre of the watch has changed even though the new version of the watch looks the same.

          So, that’s it. a watch that cost £440.00 pounds in 2000, has worked for five and a half years, is now useless.

          Against the hype and puffery and claims made for this watch, all of this is a joke. It is the watch know as the ‘Ray Mears Watch’, since he sported one for some time. (probarly until it failed).

          At the time, the claims were that it would never need winding, it was un-stoppable, it would last forever, the claims went on and on.

          Thank you for your observation, that the problem might not be with the watch. What does that mean?

          On the other hand, I do have a nice lemania 5100 calibre watch No1 designed by Jerry Porsche with PVD coating.

          Unlike citizen, Orfina, the makers of this timepeice, do support the maintainence and service of this watch, even though it dates to 1974.

          Unlike the mickey mouse service of citizens consumer branded toy watches, this watch truely can last forever and will be handed on to one of my children.

          • John January 8, 2016, 11:23 pm

            Four years – you were lucky, mine lasted two years and the service to fix the failed battery…. same as purchase price.

  • mur-phy January 31, 2015, 1:15 am

    Having posted before about my original Citizen ECO which I love and worked for the past dozen plus years, while I still have it and it functions just fine I bought another one which is a bit more dressy with a blue face and the other sits where it can keep itself charged but I also bought another one which is again different for one of my adult sons for XMAS so this family has a few ECO drive watches working and being enjoyed by members of our family.

    I did learn of another company doing similar watches but I did not find any with Titanium which is what I require so stuck with Citizen and so far happy with the choice.

    • Vanessa Wright January 31, 2015, 9:26 am

      It’s Mur-phy again. Glad is all well with you still and your wonderful titanium watch is still ticking like you!

      Are you paid by Citizen for your brand loyalty, or are you so moved to celebrate your watch you canott resist telling people over and over again?

  • Brian L March 26, 2015, 2:17 pm

    This Citizen Eco-Drive was a gift to myself. This was my first venture into an echo-drive watch, It was awesome watch back then and still is to this day. No need of batteries at all was the WOW factor.

  • vanessa wright March 26, 2015, 7:50 pm

    Like so may thousands of people Brian, your watch is OK until it needs a new charge capacitor, then you might be singing another tune. Do you work for Citizen?

  • Felix April 6, 2015, 11:58 am

    I have a Citizen eco drive 920202 H500. I had it as a gift for my 40 birthday. i have used it occasionaly. Maybe 5 weeks a year. now im 45 and the watch works when im on the sun. if i leave it in the closet by night next morning it has a 30 minutes delay.

    • vanessa wright April 6, 2015, 12:49 pm

      “Your watch will never need a battery” and all of the other puffery in the stupid adverts.

      However, what the liars at citizen never tell you is that you will have to replace the charge capacitor. Hope they still make the one for your model. Otherwise, it’s the scrapheap. See my previous posts.

      You should have bought a classic sports 100 or suchlike that you CAN maintain for life.

    • mur_phy April 6, 2015, 1:23 pm

      Felix — unfortunately, by not leaving the watch with access to daylight for many months you have created the problem you now have. The problem is not necessarily with the watch but with the user. As mentioned earlier, my watch has run and is running for 14 years of my usage and a couple of other years by the original owner. Because I saw another one I liked I bought it — because I can! The original now sits on my physical desk and thus has access to daylight and runs perfectly in tune with the one on my wrist and likely will do so for as long as I am alive. Try leaving the watch with access to daylight for some time and see if it will improve. Hopefully you will have some good luck and enjoy your watch for many more years.

      • vanessa wright April 6, 2015, 1:35 pm

        Same thing happened to mine and many other peoples watches. As for lasting for as ,long as you are alive!!!!

        Would you like to stake your life on that prediction.

        The fact is that all of Citizens ‘claims; are just advertising puffery and are not ilegal, though they should be. This is why, if you ring up their service centre in the UK, they will deny that a problem exists. Even though there is an army of repair centres offering a ‘fix’ for this problem.

        They have to deny it, because if they for a moment acknowleged the problem somebody might win a test case and people like me might have to be compensated, or they would have to make the issue of the failing capacitor public at the time of sale.

        Don’t take my word for it, ring up the service centre and ask if they are aware of this fault and the aftermarket repair services and centres.

        If its the same liar I spoke to, he will sniffily tell you that there is ‘not’ a problem and that the watch owners are being told, or lied to about the fault and theere are other problems probarly.

        I couldn’t believe the absolute cheek of the guy. In complete denial and for possessing such a brass neck.

  • Felix April 6, 2015, 4:24 pm

    Well I agree with you both, Murphy and Vanessa: Mechanical things should be maintained and running to be kept in shape. If they are going to be strored, should be a process to store them. But on the other hand Citizen does not tell you that when you buy it. Either you figured it, out or someone told you or maybe you were lucky enough that you found it out before you created the problem. As I am researching for information after the problem happened.

  • Bob G April 25, 2015, 9:12 am

    I have a Citizen Eco Drive 7875-HO4945 It needs to have a replacement Battery/Capacitor installed. I am mechanically proficient but this is a one piece body. I can only presume the Bezel has to come off and need to access from the top down since the back does not come off. I do not want to destroy this beautiful watch trying to fix it. Can someone provide advice or youtube reference for doing this?

    • vanessa wright April 25, 2015, 10:16 am

      A new Capacitor, how do you know it needs a new capacitor? I was told by the kind man at the UK service centre that the watches did not have this fault. I asked him why were there so many after service centres supplying this service then. His reply (and I wish I had recorded this bit) was that people were being taken for mugs and there probarly were other faults with the watches like water ingress.

      Give the service center a ring and let me know what they tell you.

  • Gary Fleming May 8, 2015, 7:25 pm

    I have had Citizen WR200 Titanium Solar-Tech 180, since Christmas 1998, it has worked flawlessly for 16 1/2 years, no service other than band pin failure required. I guess my capacitor is holding up. Hope to get another 5 to 10 to ? years. I have worn it everyday since often in rough sports conditions. I just bought another EcoDrive watch of a different style hoping for the same quality as this one.

    • mkduffer November 18, 2015, 3:02 pm

      I have a solar-tech dual tone from around the same time (More like September of 1998). Like you, it’s operated pretty much flawlessly and like you, I’ve also had issues with pins in the band. The band has never broken, but I’ve lost some pins, which had to be replaced. Even with the missing pins, the band still functioned fine. About 7 years ago, I received a eco-drive chrono w/ day/date, so the dual tone was relegated to party use (it’s more dressy). A few years back, my wife moved it into the dresser drawer. From time to time, I’d take it out, charge it, wear it, then put it back in the drawer, which has now apparently damaged the battery (my fault). I think I paid less than $400 for the watch originally. Considering that it lasted over 14 years and kept fantastic time, I consider it well worth the price. The only time I ever had to reset the time was when I let the battery run dry. In all the time that I’ve own the second watch, it’s always been charged and I’ve never had to adjust the time. Best time pieces I’ve ever owned. That being said, I’ve been looking at some Casio solar watches which I might buy for work. I’ve been wearing the eco-drives everywhere I go, and they have been holding up, but through my carelessness, I’ve scratched the bezels and crystals on both. I’m hoping to use the Casio as a beater. Both Citizens are WR200 and have been worn at the beach, in the water, free diving and while golfing. Fabulous watchs, IMHO. I’m very happy with my purchase. BTW, I’m getting the battery replace on the Solar-Tech. I’ll be more careful with it, once I get it back.

      • mkduffer November 18, 2015, 3:06 pm

        Oh, in 2002, bought my wife an eco-drive, which she has been using and wearing without incident ever since. The owner’s manual does have specific care instructions and it was only after I had damaged my battery that I bothered to check. Actually the Solar-Tech 180 still functions, but battery life has been shortened to about a day, so I need to be sure that it gets enough sun-light on a daily basis.

  • Tim August 5, 2015, 7:26 pm

    I have been wearing my ecodrive since 2007. I did have to get the band adjusted, but other than that it is an excellent timepiece. Running solid for over 8 years. Much better than any watch I have owned.

  • John August 20, 2015, 3:34 pm

    Bought a Citizen Solar Tech 180 in August of 1998, have worn it almost everyday since and has been running perfectly for the last 17 years. Only one little scratch on the face after all this time.

    • Julie Strietelmeier August 20, 2015, 3:41 pm

      Built to last!

      • vanessa wright August 20, 2015, 5:15 pm

        Built to last, oh c’mon, just like a Rolex? The advertising says one thing, the reality is another.

        My watch advertising said….

        “This watch will never need winding” ……..True

        “This watch will never need a battery” ……………..True, but it did need a charge capacitor after four years!

        “This watch will go on forever”………………..Yes, as long as your replacement charge capacitor lasts!

        “This watch is unstoppable”………………….Yes until your replacement charge capacitor, installed by a third party, at Citizens direction fails!

        “Powered by the sun, it will last forever”……………Until you are told that a replacment calibre, to rectify the watch that has spent more time not working, than working is not available because the original calibre is obsolete?

        Check ouit the advertising for the Ray Mears Titanium Eco Drive and tell me this is fair????

  • RaineA October 17, 2015, 11:43 pm

    Vanessa Wright stop, just stop! We get that you are unhappy with your watch and the service from Citizens. How many times are you going to post the same complaints! Move on with your life and enjoy your watches that do work. Time waits for no man or woman.

    • vanessa Wright October 18, 2015, 10:26 am

      You obviously do not understand how open forums work.

      I am just as entitled to berate Citizen, anywhere I wish and however I want to as, you are to make your comment’s…Thank you.

      It it was not for a watch that was sold as unstoppable, etc,etc,etc..Blah, blah, blah that only lasted for four years and cost me £320 I would not be here.

      Citizens support and interest in this matter has been nothing more than risable.

      Would YOU be happy to be ripped off, or do you think it is acceptable to pedal such garbage?

  • Diver Dale November 14, 2015, 6:02 pm

    So, just to set the record straight, I am not a hater of Citizen! I bought my first Citizen in Japan in 1966 and it did three tours of duty (United States Marine Corps) with me in Vietnam and to borrow a Timex phrase, it took a licking but kept on ticking. I bought an Aqualand C023 around 1990-1991 as my new dive watch and have loved it forever. It is still working even though I can’t count how batteries I have put in. I used to send it in for the replacement batteries but at$65-$75 a pop I decided to do it my self… I still wear this as my every day watch… The problem I am having is with the “new” Eco-drive watch my wife got me for Christmas 5 years ago. I only use it once every few weeks but the last time I went to use it, and I leave it out on my dresser to pickup the ambient light and not go dead, it was dead… I put it in the direct sun for 6 hours but to no avail. I went on line today to see if there was a trick or something that I was missing to get it to charge and when I entered the caliber movement # of 1013 Citizen’s website with the charging guide does not return a find for that caliber. It has 1012 and 1015 but no 1013… What’s up with that? I hear the frustration of Vanessa Wright and the problems she has had. I am planning on sending my watch into Citizen with a please fix this request. We’ll see what the result of this is … and for all of you out there that make the “maybe it’s not the watch” comment, I don’t want to hear this… I understand the charging system used by Citizen. I designed and installed all types of Photovoltaic systems all around thw world starting in 1980…. and I lived off grid standalone for 25 years… Citizen is not standing behind their product for Vanessa… Simple customer service. Make it right…

    • vanessa wright November 15, 2015, 4:33 am

      Hey River, at last a voice of reason.

      Like you, I am not being unreasonable. The watch I purchased was for my husband and there was a great deal of sentimental attatchment to that purchase..

      On the basis of the broad and extensive advertising campaign, I purchased the ‘Ray Mears’ eco drive watch..

      Whilst my husband was wearily resigned to the shoddy and un-supportive service from Citizen, it has pained me that the watch I chose for him, has failed so and has spent the vast majority of it’s early life defunct and un-workable.

      I wont forget the advertising claims and I will not forget the imediate lack of support from Citizen UK.

      From the get-go, they were in denial of any problem for what appears to have been a turkey. As I have said before, Citizen UK tech, denied that there was a problem and said the industry of privateers fitting aftermarket charge capacitors, were charlatons and pretenders for watches that had suffered water ingress?

      I hear the smug sentiments of those who own eco drives that have not had a problem, my only comment is that if they had been in my position, their story would be very different and I’m sure thtat some would be as angry and dissapointed with what can only be described as a product sold on puffery, which was not fit for purpose, and an aftermarket support which was no-existent.


  • mur_phy November 14, 2015, 10:59 pm

    It is indeed unfortunate that some users are having difficulty with the Eco Drive 180. It was easy to read the model # on the back of this one but the new one I bought a year ago is impossible to read as the text is just too small and it is impossible to get a magnifying glass lined up right without creating shadows so I have no idea of its model but it is one a bit more dressy.

    Having read many of the comments related to the watch, I decided that when I took off the 180 which is still a perfectly running watch, I would place it on my desk where it gets lots of direct and often direct sunshine and so far is still keeping perfect time as long as I remember to change from standard to daylight time. Since a year, I have only worn the watch outdoors doing some yard work on one occasion.

    Maybe too late now and I have no idea at all about calibre but maybe for others, keeping the watch in a room with more than just ambient light might do the trick. My wife neglected to keep her first watch in more direct light and it did bite the dust so she is now keeping another one in more direct light while wearing another Citizen which she recently began to wear.

    I don’t know for sure now but I think there may be other producers of solar watches so that might be an option for others considering any change. So far the price and value of the Citizen as well as the looks of the watch, particularly the new one is suiting me fine.

    Actually, I have enjoyed all of the watches enough to not only have my wife wear a few but also now have my adult son wearing one version which he enjoys too.

    Hope that you have some luck with getting an Eco to work for you and success with your endeavors to obtain assistance from Citizen.

    • Emmet January 5, 2016, 2:49 am

      For battery replacement and capacitor problems I suggest Aliexpress web site. Looks like you can at least get some vital parts cheap.

      • Vanessa Wright March 30, 2016, 7:54 am

        Hey, thank you for that comment about Ali-Express and spares. Could you give me some more information maybe?

        Thanks, Vanessa wright.

  • Sajjad Minhas March 29, 2016, 4:46 pm

    Stay away from Eco Drive watches, charged in the bright sun 3 to 4 times for eight hours each time, but dies off when you bring it inside.

  • John Howard June 16, 2016, 7:01 am

    This watch DOES NOT WORK.

    MY WATCH LOSES TIME and they can’t get the problem fixed!!

    I bought this watch and within 3 hours of buying it, it already were 10 minutes behind.
    I returned this watch to find out that they won’t replace it (because of marks on the glass which I do understand), but that they will send it in to get the inside machinery fixed.

    The “new” watch worked for about 3 months then the same thing started happening.

    It’s now so bad that I need to check it almost daily otherwise I find myself being late because of a bad quality product that I paid a lot of money for.

    I’m truly disappointed!

    • Murray White June 17, 2016, 1:52 am

      Sorry to hear this John. I had an issue with slowness on my first Eco watch but it was adjusted 15 years ago and seems to function well now. I just checked my other two with the original after seeing your post and all show exactly the same time although for the first few days my latest purchase of a couple months ago during the first couple days did the same thing but seems to have settled in quite nicely.

      Because I do have 3 watches and I use them all I have a watch case for them and some fine bracelets with a glass cover so that I can keep them near a window which allows maximum contact with daylight which keeps the batteries well charged which may have some effect on the efficiency of their timing capabilities.

      Hope you are able to rectify your situation and enjoy the watch.


      • Vanessa Wright June 17, 2016, 7:23 am

        The watch I bought my husband ran for a few years and then I was faced with an indifferent support infrastructure from Citizen when it expired.

        At the heart of this, was their COMPLETE denial that the charge capacitor was at fault! Something that is now common knowlege. Their only advice was to go to a third party for its repair. Since the caliber of the watch has now been changed, it has rendered an expensive timepeice useless!

        It does not matter how you dress the situation up, the support was slipshod, lousy and useless.

        Thank you Citizen!…2031.9657.0.12226.….0…1ac.1.64.img..0.14.820…0j0i24.4T4JijoGrQ0#imgrc=aa_tvh4cCFeTWM%3A

  • Vanessa Wright June 17, 2016, 7:25 am

    No wonder Ray Mears stopped wearing his Eco drive, he now wears a rolex..Probarly more reliable!

    • Murray White June 17, 2016, 11:34 am

      Now Venessa — how can you compare a $400 watch to a $5-45K watch and then again, unfortunately, the Rolex is not powered by solar which unless the watch is beyond belief but within my price range is a major deal breaker which was the case when I called about a Rolex I did really like but at $45K it was beyond my means.

      • Vanessa Wright June 17, 2016, 3:19 pm

        Murray, are you are being deliberatly obtuse?

        Citizen said the watch was; and I quote……….

        “Unstoppable, it will go on for ever!”
        “It would go on for ever powered by the sun!”
        “This watch would never need winding”
        “It will never need a battery” (just the odd charge capacitor)
        “Its case is made from Titanium alloy, stronger and more scratch resistent than stainless steel”
        “The watch glass is made from anti reflective, anti scratch 2.5mm thick saphire crystal”
        “The strap is made from Kevlar”
        “this is no ordainary watch”

        The list of puffery and claims went on and on and all this for a watch that cost £440 in 1999.

        Regardles of the watch not costing $5-45K, which is a lovely comparison that you have made, given the spec and Citizens claims, I and other people would agree that all is not well and satisfactory and given its spec was all capable of surviving anything a rolex could…And anyway, the cost of a rolex does not imbue it with invulnerability, but rather with the cache of exclusivity.

        Put it this way, if you were me, you would have my attitude and perspective, given my experience.
        However, I would like to think that If I was you, I might not have made such a half assed comparison and demonstrated a bit more objectivity on this subject.

      • Vanessa Wright June 18, 2016, 9:18 am


        • Andy jones August 7, 2016, 11:12 am

          Vanessa you really need to get over this watch thing.
          Have you considered counselling maybe take your buddy from the repair desk. Help him with his denial and he can help you with your relentlessly obsessive attack on Citizen watches and their charge capacitors.
          Remember it’s a watch that cost you £415 seventeen years ago.
          Life is too short to be bitter.

          • vanessa wright August 7, 2016, 2:27 pm

            Oh, Andy, and you would never complain!

            I was ripped off, do you like getting ripped of? It could be a fetish my friend if you do.

            Just a few minutes, here and there, It’s always a pleasure to meet people like you in the process.

            You have left a message here….You of all people would moan like hell!

  • Andy August 8, 2016, 12:04 pm

    Oh Vanessa……
    I would complain and I’m not questioning your right to.
    You had a legitimate problem that was not dealt with properly if at all.
    You made a legitimate complaint and posted it. Then you started to repeat it over and over so now it just a rant and hard to take you seriously.
    I’m sure you will respond this as you strike me as someone who MUST get the last word at all costs. I’ll let you just remember if you do respond you’ll be proving me right. 🙂
    Don’t take this to the grave it was only a watch.

    • vanessa wright August 8, 2016, 12:30 pm

      Andy, you are a complaints monkey of the worst kind!

      Look at you, back here again with an axe to grind. Towards me?

      At least my beef is with Citizen for selling duff watches, whats you excuse for a dust up? Me?

      S’hhhhhhhhhhh Go away!

  • Steve August 26, 2016, 6:24 pm

    Christ Oh Mighty! I feel so bad for Vanessa’s husband and any other people that have the unfortunate luck to have to listen to her bitch and complain from sun up to sun down. LOL Lady, your a piece of work. You have easily wasted a good 10 hours or more of your life bitching about this watch. I would hate o see what you would do if you new car with problems. This was a 400 dollar watch. Get a life lady! Then again maybe by spending your time on this blog you are giving those around you a much needed break.

    PS I got my Eco-Drive in 1999 and its still going strong. Best watch I ever owned.

    …….and by the way vanessa, feel free to give me hell for my comments but know that I doubt I will ever come back to this site again so I will never read what you say. All I know is reading your rants and raves here makes my ex wife seem not so bad.

    • vanessa wright August 27, 2016, 2:53 pm

      Brilliant- you came here to criticise me?

      I came here to criticise Citizen for their slipshod integrity.

      Are you a friend of Andy’s?

  • Steve September 9, 2016, 8:23 am

    Im sorry Vanessa, I must have had a hang nail or something the day I wrote my post. I apologize for being so mean spirited. That being said, I do still believe you are taking this all much too serious. Of course you should have been upset for paying good money for a product that ultimately did not meet your expectations. You dont seem to be alone in the fact that you received a sub par watch. Just realize that you are by far in the minority. There are probably 10,000 satisfied customers for every one of you that are not. Of course if we were talking Rolex or something then sure, you would not expect such problems. But we are talking a $400 dollar watch and the fact is although you got a bad apple, most of us could not be any happier with our Citizen watch. I actually had mine in a dark drawer for over a year because I needed to get a new pin for the band. IAfter reading some of these posts I was worried that all the darkness might have done my watch in. However I am happy to report that I got the band fixed and my watch is running as good as the day I first bought it. Sorry you had some bad luck with your Citizen but let it go. You have caused yourself way too much grief for such a petty gripe. Move on. I mean maybe you have lived a blessed life up to now but I can tell you I have had a few things way way way way worse than this happen. I cant imagine how you would be able to handle a real issue.

  • vanessa wright September 9, 2016, 9:35 am

    I’m quite happy thank-you for your concern.

    This just entertainment really and my reply to Citizens crap customer care ethos at that time.

    Dunno what they are like now, but when the fault first occurred, guy at service centre was rude and refused to believe the charge capacitor fault (which is now common knowlege) Said all of those third party repair centres were just ripping Citizen owners off?

    Anyway, I was told the watch would be un-stoppable, would go on for ever, etc,etc,etc.

    Galling really as this watch now changes hands for £800 on FleaBay sometimes.

    Thats no the point though, you sell something with claims and you would have thought you would be held to them?

    Apparently not, its all on the guarantee, not the puffery-bogus advertising claims, but you would have thought Citizen could have done the decent thing though.

    Its only a petty gripe, if it is not your’s, so go away and pick on somebody else. As for coping with crisis’s, or issues…………Brilliant!

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