How to Find the Best Tritium Watch

Tritium military watch

Tritium watches are unique in the fact that they can be viewed in virtually any dark environment with great reliability. Many of these watches tend to be militaristic in design, especially when considered a watch from a manufacturer like Luminox, but there are a number of other manufacturers that also use Tritium to create a viewable watch.

If you’re wondering how to find the best Tritium watch, here are some pointers to think about as you go through each watch review.

#1. Think about what brightness level you will need.

There are two general types of Tritium watches that are available today. They are referred to as T25 and T100 watches. Sometimes the T100 is simply listed as “T.” The T100 watches glow brighter than the T25 watches do, though not everyone agrees.

The number is a measurement of the millicuries of Tritium that the watch contains in a glass tube or vial contained within the watch.

#2. Look at the length of the warranty.

Tritium is a radioactive glass which reacts with zinc sulfide paint that is coated on the glass tubes or vials that are contained within a watch. The light that this combination is able to produce is believed to last for a minimum of 10 years.

Some calculations state that these watches could keep producing light for up to 25 years, though there may be fading in the final few years. The best warranties will protect your watch through these time periods.

#3. Know your source of Tritium.

A majority of the top watch designers and manufacturers all use the same source for the Tritium they include in their designs. That company is called MB-Microtec AG and it is based in Switzerland. Their Tritium tubes are considered to be the best in the industry today and their seals are often engraved onto the watch itself.

A second company, SRB Technologies, is based out of Canada. There isn’t a watch company which currently discloses that they use Tritium tubes from this company, but it is suspected that those who do not report which supplier they use are obtaining this radioactive gas from them.

The 5 companies which currently list an unknown Tritium source for their designs are as follows.

  • Alexandre Christie
  • Marathon
  • Sottomarino
  • Truglo
  • Uzi

There are also rumors that a Chinese company is producing Tritium for watch manufacturing as well. Most of the information about this company come from watch forums or Reddit discussions and nothing at the moment can be independently verified.

#4. Consider the actual color of the Tritium in the watch.

There are a number of different colors in which Tritium can glow, based on the coating of the tubes that are included in the watch design. Green is the most popular color simply because it is the most favorable night color wavelength for the human eye to see. This is why a majority of watches that incorporate Tritium use green colorization.

Not everyone can see the green color properly, which is why there are several additional options available. Yellow, white, and light blue tend to be the best alternative options for night viewing. Orange, red, and dark blue tend to be the most difficult options to see.

#5. Pay attention to the actual materials of the watch.

The best Tritium watch will typically have a case that is made from stainless steel. Some watch manufacturers will also use a material that is called CRPC to make their watch. CRPC stands for Carbon Reinforced Polycarbonate. How CRPC is made will depend on its strength. This is why you can find a great Luminox watch for less than $250 that many people love, but some people hate because all they had to do was stretch to break their casing.

This sort of circumstance may or may not qualify for warranty coverage. That’s why it is usually better to invest in a stainless steel watch if you plan to wear it daily.

#6. Know what the glass happens to be for your watch.

The watch crystal is a screen that is fabricated using a variety of different materials. To keep costs down on some Tritium watches, the manufacturer will use mineral glass as this screen. That’s similar to the materials that are used in your average household windows. Premium watches will use a sapphire crystal instead.

Sapphire is the second-strongest on the mineral hardness scale, which makes the Tritium watch less prone to scratching. This doesn’t make the crystal shatter-resistant, but it does prevent almost anything from scratching up the face of the watch. Since scratches can affect how you see the colorization of the Tritium at night, this may be an important consideration.

A Tritium watch with a sapphire crystal may cost up to $300 more than a watch with a standard mineral crystal. Always assume that the watch contains mineral glass instead of sapphire glass unless the manufacturer specifically states “sapphire glass” in the timepiece description.

#7. Be aware of any stipulations that are placed on the purchase of your new watch.

Many Tritium watches must be purchased from an authorized retailer in order to qualify for warranty coverage. If the tube breaks for some reason in the watch, it may not operate properly. Should that watch be purchased from a retailer that is not authorized for the brand, the repair may not even be attempted when requested.

This can be difficult to do at times if you’re purchasing the best Tritium watch online. If you shop on online, you’ll want to get the official business name of the company providing the watch listing. Then you’ll want to compare that to the official authorized list that is maintained by the watch manufacturer before finalizing your purchase.

The best Tritium watch will fit comfortably on your wrist, allow you to see it at night, and provide you with at least a decade of visibility. Use this guide as you go through the best watch reviews if you’re interested in a Tritium watch and you’ll be able to find the perfect timepiece to meet your needs.