The Rolex serial numbers are found between the lugs on the side of the case at the 6 o’clock side, behind the bracelet. This 4-8 digit number is engraved by Rolex on every watch and it can be used to determine its production date. Beginning in 2005, the Company started to also engrave the serial number on the inside flange (or “rehaut” as it’s called in French) between the dial and the crystal. Starting in 2008, the Company began to only engrave the numbers on the rehaut. We provide this verified database chart for those folks looking for an answer to an often asked question, "where or how do I find the Rolex serial numbers on my watch."
These sets of numbers, for example 28000 for the year 1926 or Z000001 for year 2006, are inscribed by machine on the side of the watch case between the lugs at 6 o’clock (see below). It is very helpful to know the official Rolex production date to help us determine its market value.
(Year of Production)
(Serial number of your Rolex)
|2008||M OR V|
|2007||M OR Z|
|2006||D OR Z|
|2001||K OR Y|
Rolex engraves or assigns a 4-6 digit model number to every watch type it produces. This number can be found engraved between the lugs on the side of the case above 12 o’clock. The model number can indicate the model type, bezel, and material of your watch. For example, the reference number 16234 can be broken out into three section, which is 162 | 3 | 4. The first, 162, indicates that this watch is a Datejust. The second, 3, indicates that the bezel is fluted. The third, 4, indicates that the watch material is Stainless w/ 18k White Gold.
The first two or three digits indicate the model type of the watch. If the model number is five digits long, the 5th number defines the type of bezel it has and the last number defines the material the watch is made of. Hence, a 16610 would be a Submariner with an engine turned bezel made of stainless steel.
|Submariner (no date)||55 & 140|
|Submariner||16, 166 & 168|
|Sea Dweller||16 & 166|
|GMT Master||16, 65, 167|
|GMT Master II||167, 1167|
|Day-Date (President)||65, 66, 18, 180, 182 & 183|
|Datejust||16 & 162|
|Daytona Manual Wind||62|
|Daytona Cosmograph||165, 1165|
|Oyster Perpetual||10, 140, 142|
|Airking||55 & 140|
|Date||15 & 150|
|Yachtmaster||166, 686 & 696|
|Midsize Oyster Perp DJ||68, 682|
|Ladies Oyster Perpetual||67, 671, 672|
|Ladies Date||65, 69, 691 & 692|
|Ladies Datejust||65, 69, 691 & 692|
|Yellow Gold Filled||1|
|White Gold Filled||2|
|Stainless & Yellow Gold||3|
|Stainless w/ 18k White Gold||4|
|14k Yellow Gold||7|
|18k Yellow Gold||8|
Many Rolex watches have a clasp code located inside the clasp hinge. This code is based on the month and year the clasp was manufactured. After inspecting the clasp you will see 1 or 2 letters followed by a number. The letter corresponds with a year and the number signifies a month. For instance, per the table below, we see that a bracelet stamped G4 was manufactured in April 1982. A service replacement” bracelet would have an additional "S" stamped along with the year.
|A or VA||1976|
|B or VB||1977|
|C or VC||1978|
|D or VD||1979|
|E or VE||1980|
|F or VF||1981|
|T or W||1995|
The table below lists all the 3 digit country codes for Rolex watches. This country code can be found in the upper left hand corner on the Rolex Guaranty Certificate. There is no country code for the USA and most watches older than 1980 will NOT have a country code.
|130||Belgium / Luxemburg|
|430||Singapore / Brunai|
|906||Natex Retail, German NATO Airbase|
The upgrade to the sapphire crystal occurred on the following years. This data was originally compiled from Professor Rolex Matthias.
|Quartz Beta 21 Ref 5100||—||—||1970||—|
|Perpetual Ref. 1530, 1630, 1831||1975||1975||—||1975|
|Turn - O- Graph||New Plexi Ref 16250||1989||1989||—|
|Day - Date||—||—||1978||1978|
|Submariner Date||1981||1984 Ref. 16803||1981||—|
|GMT Master||1989||New Plexi Ref 1675/3, 16753||1981||—|
|GMT Master II||1984||1989||1989||—|
Some of the older papers issued in the United States have red letters stamped on the certificate. These red letters signifies when the watch was shipped from Rolex USA to an Authorized Dealer.
For example, L RCCT would be 3 1998 or March 19, 1998.
While there is no "Official" Rolex Serial numbers database list from the Rolex Factory that shows dates of production, this chart below lists all the serial numbers gathered by proven authorities over the years. See the list below by production year to learn the year your watch was made. If you decide to sell a Rolex, check out our official price list before doing so. We've also added a serial numbers look-up table for Tudor watches below. These charts will be frequently updated to reflect any changes in the numbering system for future years. For more information on how these numbers work, click here - Wikipedia
Many watch collectors like to know how to locate their serial numbers to help access the value of their watch. If you are looking to get a quote for your timepiece Call 1-800-494-3708 or fill out the form below to get a free estimate from Bob's Watches within the next 2 minutes!
Want to know what your Rolex is worth? - Just click on one of the steps below or click here at sell my Rolex watch to get an instant value purchase offer from Bob's Watches – the most trusted name in pre-owned Rolex watches and rated "A" by the BBB – www.la.bbb.org.
The serial numbers can be found in one of two places on the watch. First check the inner rim of the watch face (also called the rehaut, which is french for "flange") between the dial and the crystal. If the watch was produced in 2005 or newer the serial should be engraved on the rehaut.
On older Rolexes, this serial is located on the side of the watch case at the 6 o'clock position where the bracelet is attached. To view these serial numbers, the bracelet must be detached from the 6 'clock side of the case. For instructions on removing the bracelet, see the video to the right or call us at 1-800-494-3708 to speak with a Rolex expert. You can also learn by watching the video at the top of the page.
The model or reference number is located on the side of the watch case at the 12 o'clock position. As with the serial number, the bracelet must be detached from the 12 o'clock side of the case to be able to check the serial number. For instructions on removing the bracelet, watch the video above or call us at 1-800-494-3708 to speak with a Rolex expert.
Rolex has been engraving their watches with a unique Rolex serial numbers, and Rolex models number since the 1920’s as tool to track the production year of a Rolex watch. The production age of a pre-owned Rolex watch is a significant factor in determining its current market value. As you would expect, the value of a Rolex watch, unlike a fine wine, will decrease in value as new, improved models are launched by Rolex. For example, watches that have Rolex model numbers beginning with the letter Z were produced in the year 2006 and, all things considered, are valued higher than say a Rolex with serial numbers that begins with P for the year 2000. The age along with other factors such as the condition of the bracelet will help Bob's establish the true, fair market value of the wristwatch. This distinctive serial number is located on the inside case of the watch between the lugs below the 6 o’clock end of the watch. It is a five to seven digit number starting with 28000 in the year 1926. You will need to remove the bracelet carefully from the watch using a small screw driver or tack. While this number will tell us when the watch was made by Rolex, it will not tell us when the watch was eventually sold. Also worth noting is that the condition of the watch is as important as its age. The Rolex serial numbers (also referred to as Rolex style numbers or case number), is also helpful in determining if a watch such as a Submariner watch is a genuine authentic Rolex as some fakes do not have serial numbers (see How To Spot a Fake Rolex article for tips). When inspecting the different models of Rolex watches this "look up" tool, or widget, is the only one of its kind in the industry and allows people to easily find the manufacture date of their pre-owned Rolex by the Rolex band serial numbers. Ebay has a list or chart of the serial numbers with estimated production dates but they too do not have an easy to use look up tool like we provide here.
Note: If you need help on how to find the Rolex case number (serial #), please view the video below or check out find my Rolex serial numbers for a quick and easy tutorial about how to find Rolex numbers. Also refer to the Rolex Serial Number Chart below.