Some people look forward to this day for months. No, it's not Christmas or Independence Day, it's the start of Daylight Saving Time (DST), when clocks are set ahead one hour to take advantage of natural daylight. For many people, this signals the start of spring. However, if you're in charge of company operations and need to make sure all your clocks are working correctly, DST can stand for deeply stressful trouble. That is unless, you have the right system of clocks. Here is what you need to know before DST begins on Sunday, March 12.
Testing Your System Clocks Before DST
Testing your clock system before Daylight Saving Time begins is a must.
- The first step is to unplug one system clock. Wait 10 minutes and then plug it in again. The clock will get synchronization signals from the master at the recommended intervals and synchronize to the master time if the master is working properly. It may take 24 hours for the clock to be on time again.
- For wireless battery operated clocks, remove the battery power and let the clock come to a complete stop. Reinstall the battery and wait 24 hours. If the master is working properly it will be on time.
- Then, check the system controller to make sure it indicates the correct time, time zone and DST setting.
If the clock automatically adjusts to the correct current time, you know you master is working properly and as long as it has the correct daylight saving day programmed into it you should be worry free for DST. If your clock didn't correct, follow the first rule of electronics troubleshooting and check your connections and master readout screens. This includes power cables, antennas and plugs. Make sure all the connections are secure. If your controller uses Ethernet for synchronous time, make sure the network settings on the master clock haven't changed.
If network settings have changed or if your clocks don't reset to the correct time, contact your information technology team and then call American Time support at 1-800-328-8996 for further assistance.
Clock Battery Life
If certain battery powered system clocks do not reset, check your battery voltage. If your battery has a voltage reading of 1.5v or more, you're in good shape for clock operation and DST changes. If the batteries get weak and need to be changed make sure you use all new batteries. Do not mix old and new batteries. With the six pack battery pack, swapping batteries is an infrequent task. In the event you need help changing clock batteries, contact American Time customer support.
Wired and Wireless Clocks and DST
All of American Time's system clocks automatically adjust for DST. This is also the case for PoE or Wi-Fi models. The PoE and Wi-Fi clocks will also adjust for international DST time changes. If you have American Time's SiteSync IQ in place, it will automatically make DST adjustments to other building systems like security, HVAC and more. This type of reliability means you don't have to make changes by hand or come in on Sunday morning to make the adjustments. If only it were this easy in your own home…
American Time's Tom Nelson once cleverly compared DST time adjustments to Dracula: "They both suddenly change in the middle of the night and can be a nightmare for the unprepared." Your operations or maintenance teams can avoid the nightmare by doing some simple tests in advance of DST, which will make springing ahead on March 12 a dream come true.