How to Adjust a Quartz Clock

Quartz clocks use an electronic oscillator that's regulated by a quartz crystal. Quartz clocks were introduced in the 1970s and are now the most common method of clock time keeping. Even if a clock has a swinging pendulum or weights, it can still be a quartz clock. Setting and adjusting the time is a little different for quartz clocks than for other clocks because the time keeping is regulated by the crystal, not the pendulum.

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Wall Clock
  1. Insert the batteries.
  2. Adjust the time using the minute hand or the time setting knob, which is likely on the back. Make sure the batteries are installed first if you are adjusting the time using the hands. Also, never adjust the time with the hour hand; the hour hand will move automatically with the minute hand.
  3. Allow the clock to operate for at least an hour for the chime sequence to become synchronized (if there is a chime sequence).


  • Use the volume control knob to regulate the chime volume and use the chime selector switch to choose chimes if the clock has more than one. Many clocks only have Westminster, but if you see other options--which will be labeled "Melody 2" or "Melody 3" for example---just move the selector.
  • Many clocks have an automatic nighttime chime shutoff. Different symbols will be displayed next to the nighttime switch. Usually the chime can be turned off for eight hours. The icon is likely to be a musical note with a stripe through it. There is also reduced chime volume and full chime volume.

About the Author

Patrick Nelson has been a professional writer since 1992. He was editor and publisher of the music industry trade publication "Producer Report" and has written for a number of technology blogs. Nelson studied design at Hornsey Art School.