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FAQ Clocks

How does a radio controlled clock work?

Radio Controlled clocks are very accurate, they have a built in radio receiver (these are very small so you won’t even notice them in the clock) these pick up the UK time signal broadcast by the National Physics Laboratory in Cumbria, generated by one of the world’s most accurate Atomic Clocks, accurate to one second in every million years! The signal is broadcast 24 hours a day 7 days a week at 60kHz and covers the whole of the United Kingdom.

Please be aware that some things can cause interference with the Radio Signal, which means the clocks will not work properly as they will be unable to pick up the Radio Signal.

Things such as:

  • Steel framed building
  • Reinforced concrete building
  • Large metal objects - such as large metal framed windows
  • Close proximity to Pylons can cause interference
  • Overhead power cables may also cause interference

Your clock may stop working temporarily whilst the building is clad in scaffolding
My Radio Controlled Clock does not appear to be working?
The signal is very strong, but it is a radio signal so may encounter interference depending on where the clock is placed, problems with signal is usually a combination of factors.

If the clock appears to have not set for a long time, it may be due to the signal being turned off for maintenance, call 020 8943 6493 to hear a recorded message for the Time Signal
Try a fresh battery, the clocks ability to pick up the signal will diminish as the battery runs down. Then reset the clock, this can take several minutes so nip off and do something else for half an hour!

Most clocks have an internal antenna, so try the clock in a different position

Clocks will struggle to pick up signal in steel framed buildings and reinforced concrete buildings, you may lose signal if work is being done on the building and scaffolding is being used, also large metal objects such as large metal window frames

Interference can be caused by overhead power lines, pylons, electric motors, fluorescent tubes, CRT monitor or Televisions, if you think this is the case try moving the clock to a new location

If you still have a query please call us on 01568 610 944 or email

Why does my pendulum not swing evenly?

If the clock is not hung straight on the wall the pendulum will swing unevenly, gently get hold of the bottom of the clock and move slightly left or right on the wall until the pendulum swings evenly.

What is a sweep movement?

A sweep movement refers to the second hand, on a standard clock the second hand jumps every second around the the clock for 60 seconds, on a sweep movement the second hand moves around the clock in a single smooth continuous movement.

What is a silent movement? is the clock truly silent?

A clock with a silent movement has no audible click of the second hand, making them ideal in a bedroom.

How waterproof are the outdoor clocks?

The clocks are weather resistant and the faces are sealed, they can withstand rain and snow but you cannot submerge them in water.

What types of dial are their?

The two main types of dial are Arabic and Roman, an Arabic dial has number 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.... and a Roman dial has Roman Numerals I, II, III, IV, V.... the ring where the numbers are on a clock is called the chapter ring, within this chapter ring their can be hour markers or minute markers or both, some clocks have no numbers or time indicators at all and are very clean and modern looking. On childrens clocks the numbers are usually colourful and bright, on kitchen clocks the numbers may be more arty in design.

If the clock has a chime, can it be shut off at night?

Yes clocks with chimes such as Westminster or Whittington come with an auto night shut off, this is normally between 10pm and 6am, cuckoo clocks also normally have an auto night shut off as well.