Best Watch for EMT & Paramedics (2020 Updated)

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Best watch for EMT & paramedics - buying guide

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Firstly, if you are an EMT or a paramedic reading this, just know that you are doing a wonderful job for the citizens of the country. I absolutely admire your everyday courage and the will to save the lives of other people. 

My admiration for your work is actually the reason for me writing this article. Since I know that your job is a demanding one and you might not be an expert in devices outside of the ambulance, picking the best watch for EMT can prove to be a challenge. To help you make the correct decision, I have listed my top 10 picks that will neither stretch your dollar nor make you regret the purchase.

I’m absolutely aware that a watch is not as important as a stethoscope or trauma shears. Still, it’s a device that should be on point as it helps you be accurate when dealing with everyday tasks. Before we proceed to the list, let me explain what are the features a solid EMT and paramedic watch should have.

There’s no doubt that that the looks are always important but in the case of EMT watches, I have prioritized other aspects. Because of the challenging nature of your job, I have selected watches that are first and foremost:

    • accurate
    • durable
    • easy to clean
    • low on a budget

Since most of your days are probably rushy, you need the watch to be super accurate. Because of that, the list contains only watches that have an accuracy of up to 3 seconds per day or less.

The durability of an EMT watch is just as important. Since often you are facing some extreme medical cases, the watch must be able to withstand any tough conditions. As you are dealing with different types of fluids daily, the timepiece simply needs to be easy to clean.

Last but not least, the watch shouldn’t stretch your budget. No matter how durable a watch is, a challenging job of an EMT or a paramedic might still wear it off quicker. To avoid spending a fortune on a watch that you might need to replace in a few years, each of the products on my list is budget-friendly.

Best Watch For EMT (Top 10 Overview)

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Best Watch For EMT (Top 10 Reviewed)

G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Review

The most durable of the Casio G-Shock durables. If a little more pricey timepiece is not much of an issue for you, then you can’t go wrong with the Rangeman. From all the products reviewed, this, in my opinion, is the best watch for first responders. And here’s why. 

The Rangeman is one of the newest additions to the extremely rugged Master of G series of Casio. The first thing that makes this G-Shock watch a standout amongst other Casio products on this list are the stainless steel elements used both with the watch case and the band. This, in combination with the predominant resin material and water-resistance of up to 200m, makes the product pretty much bullet-proof.

Also, Rangeman is only one of two Solar-powered EMT watches on this list. The face of the watch has a built-in solar panel that automatically recharges the battery.

In order for the watch not to die out, you need to expose it to any type of light every 6-12 months. Since you don’t plan to spend the next few months in a basement, it pretty much means that it’s eternal. The comfort of not having to worry about and spending money on new batteries is something I like a lot.

The Quartz analog display of this watch is protected by a durable mineral crystal dial window. The Rangeman has an LED backlight making sure of comfortable nightshift use. The cylindrical, stainless steel buttons around the watch case further make sure of improved resistance to impact.

The often-used sensor button has also a metal cover to avoid it wearing off. To ensure using the features of the watch is as hassle-free as possible, each sensor mode has its own audible tone. Thanks to that, when in an emergency, you are sure which mode you are using without having to look at the dial.

And since we are talking about the features, it’s the perfect time to list some of the extra perks of the Casio Rangeman. Apart from the basics that will make your shift easier to endure (ie. daily alarms and the 1/10-second stopwatch), it features a lot more.

For example, the presence of altimeter, barometer, thermometer and compass makes the watch also a great option for hiking enthusiasts. The watch is also low-temperature-resistant. Thanks to that, even the winter months’ nightshifts don’t seem that scary a prospect anymore. 

All things considered, this is by far the best watch for an EMT on this list. If a watch above $100 doesn’t scare you off, this is your best bet.

The Good

  • Super durable stainless steel & resin body
  • Resistant to shocks & water (200m)
  • Solar-powered
  • EL backlight
  • Countdown timer, stopwatch

The Bad

  • Some might find it too large

G-Shock DW9052-1V Review

Like any other watch of this famous Casio series, DW9025-1v is an extremely durable timepiece. By some EMTs and paramedics, it’s called the unofficial, official watch of the public safety. And that’s for a reason. 

This shock-resistant watch is super accurate and was designed to withstand any challenges a typical EMT’s day might present. The watch boasts a typical for the series rectangular dial protected by a durable mineral window.

Because the case and the band are made of resin, this watch is extremely easy to clean after a day full of drama. You also don’t have to worry about any contact with water and other fluids as it’s water-resistant up to 200m.

As well as all the essential features a good EMT watch should have, it includes some extras. The watch comes with a multi-function alarm and a 1/100-second stopwatch that might be useful during activities such as taking someone’s pulse by hand.

An afterglow EL backlight, so characteristic of most G-Shock watches, will make sure reading any dial data is hassle-free also at night.

All in all, this G-Shock EMT watch is an absolute steal at the price quoted. If you are on a budget but want to get a solid watch that will last for years, get it. There are not many EMS watches out there with better value for money.

The Good

  • Rugged resin case & band
  • Resistant to shocks & water (200m)
  • Solar-powered
  • Atomic timekeeping

The Bad

  • For the price quoted, it's hard to find any

Suunto 3 Fitness Review

A good EMT watch that’s not a G-Shock, for a change. The next on our list of best EMT watches is a fitness timepiece produced by the Finnish conglomerate, Suunto.

Suunto 3 Fitness is predominantly described as a watch designed for people leading active lifestyles. But, having had a look at its feature, I can safely say that it’s also a great device for you as an EMT. 

This Suunto model is the most lightweight timepiece on this list. It weighs just 36 grams and is hardly noticeable when wearing. But don’t let the thinness of it fool you, it is pretty damn durable.

Considering that it’s a smartwatch, the battery life is quite impressive. Unlike in the case of some more pricey “smart” alternatives, you won’t have to worry about recharging it during your shift – it can last up to 5 days.

The silicone strap of this watch ensures easy cleaning and the stainless steel bezel adds to the solidity. Perhaps one thing I don’t like about an otherwise solid design is the plastic glass material used with the screen. It’s not as enduring as mineral or sapphire glass and might be more prone to defects.

This watch has some cool features my two top picks don’t. First and foremost, you can connect it with your phone. Suunto 3 Fitness is compatible both with Android and iOS devices. Hence, it enables you to see all the important notifications on your wrist – without the need to pull out your smartphone every time. Considering the busy nature of your job, I find it super helpful.

Another two features I love about this watch which fit perfectly for an EMT or paramedic, are the stress and recovery modes. As you probably know best, the job can be quite exhausting at times and you need proper recovery. Suunto 3 makes sure this is easier to achieve. What’s also worth mentioning is the availability of heart rate tracker and calorie/step counter.

As far as this list is concerned, this is probably the best smartwatch for EMT. What stops it from topping the chart is probably the aforementioned plastic glass. I consider durability as a high priority in EMT watches and this one is not as tough as my two winners above.

The Good

  • Stainless steel case & silicon band
  • Sleep, stress & heart rate monitor
  • Long battery life
  • Water-resistant (30m)

The Bad

  • Dial window could be of tougher material

Timex TW5M27200 Review

What I love about Timex timepieces is that they always come in a neat design, are durable and most importantly, don’t stretch a dollar. TW5M27200 from the DGTL collection is no different. 

Resembling some of the Casio G-Shock watches, this tough-looking Timex model meets all of the criteria of a good watch for EMT.

TW5M27200 is a Quartz movement timepiece with a digital display. The watch case is made of withstandable resin material. Just like the silicone-made strap, it’s super easy to clean and resistant to any damage caused by daily use. To add to the durability, I’d probably used a mineral glass to protect the dial instead of the plastic one used in this model.

When it comes to useful features, Timex TW5M27200 comes with a 1/100-second countdown timer and a day/day/month calendar. For comfortable night viewing, Timex watches use their own Indiglo Lightup technology and this model is no exception. You shouldn’t lose sleep over any contact with fluids as the watch is 5ATM water-resistant.

Considering the super low price of this model, it’s a small-risk option for savvy shoppers. It’s not as solid as my top budget pick due to plastic dial window but other than that, it’s an okay product.

The Good

  • Rugged case & band
  • Water-resistant up to 50m
  • Indiglo Light-Up
  • Water-resistant (30m)

The Bad

  • Plastic dial window

G-Shock GXW-56BB-1JF Review

Another Casio G-Shock watch on the list and tell you what, it’s another one that looks (and feels) absolutely bulletproof. The Gx56BB-1 model belongs to the Black Out Series and just like my top two Casio picks, is known for its superb durability. 

The digital display of the watch is run on the Quartz movement and has a solid accuracy of up to 15 seconds per month. The dial is protected by a durable mineral glass. Both the band and the case are made of resin. The version of the product I’m describing here is matte all-black but you can also pick one with red touches.

Just like any other G-Shock model, GXW-56BB-1JF is shock-resistant. Similarly to my top pick, the Rangeman, it is also solar-powered. Using the Tough Solar G-Shock technology, it runs on light exposure. That should save you some of the hard-earned money on replaceable batteries.

The watch comes with a pre-programmed calendar until 2099, as well as world time with 31 different time zones. Other basic features like stopwatch and alarms are also available.

Any usage during night shifts won’t be an issue as this timepiece comes with a full auto EL backlight with the Afterglow effect. Exposure to water and other fluids shouldn’t worry you as Casio GXW-56BB-1JF is water-resistant up to 200M.

The Good

  • Tough resin body & scratch-resistant dial
  • Resistant to shocks and water (200m)
  • Solar-powered
  • EL backlight
  • Atomic timekeeping

The Bad

  • Just like Casio Rangeman, it's really huge

Fitbit Versa Lite Smartwatch Review

Nowadays, Fitbit is on the lips of many smartwatch enthusiasts and it’s not without a reason. The US-based company has delivered some great and affordable activity trackers over the years. Loved mostly by people leading an active lifestyle, Fitbit Versa Lite is also a good option for those working in the EMS. 

Firstly, the Fitbit model I’m describing here is a smartwatch. As most of your days as an EMT are probably rushy, time is worth its weight in gold. This is why the Fitbit’s compatibility with your smartphone is a huge advantage over many other watches on this list. Without the need of reaching into your pocket, you can stay up to date with all the notifications like new text messages or missed phone calls.

From other cool features that you might find useful, there’s a 24/7 heart rate monitor. To make sure you recover well for the challenges ahead, the EMT smart watch lets you track your sleep quality. Away from work, you can use it for other activities like jogging. When connected to your phone’s GPS, it allows you to get super detailed insights into your endeavors.

How about the design? it resembles an Apple Watch a bit, doesn’t it? Probably it’s down to the rectangular case. The body of the watch is made of anodized aluminum. In combination with the Corning Gorilla Glass 3 screen, it ensures long and comfortable use.

If you would like to customize the design a little, Fitbit offers many different band options. You can get them either at Amazon or at the official Fitbit Store.

Perhaps one thing I dislike about the watch is its relatively short battery life. Okay, four days is not the end of the world for a smartwatch. Still, considering the nature of an EMT or paramedic job, you don’t want to run the risk of running out of “gas”.

The Good

  • Mobile compatibility for prompt notifications
  • Customizable design
  • Heart rate monitor
  • Water-resistant up to 50m

The Bad

  • Needs regular charging

Luminox 3059 Evo Navy Seal Review

I’d definitely consider this watch as one of the premium products on the list. With the “premium” tag comes a higher price but also an awesome quality so typical for Swiss-made watches. 

Luminox, just like many other brands coming from Switzerland, is a brand renowned for producing extremely accurate timepieces. In this aspect, the Quartz Movement 3059 EVO Navy Seal model is no different. The precision of the watch stands at an impressive rate of up to 0,5 seconds per day.

There are a few things thanks to which this Luminox model stands out from other EMT watches on this list. Firstly, it uses a Carbonox case that’s exclusive to Luminox products. The innovative carbon compound material is about six times lighter than steel, three times lighter than titanium and also weighs less than most plastic materials. It’s pretty much dirt-proof and as easy to clean as they come.

Going through some of the user reviews of this watch, many say it still works a treat after 5 years of regular use. Considering the durability of Luminox watches in general, it doesn’t come as a surprise. This model looks particularly tough to break.

The analog display is protected by a shock and scratch-resistant sapphire crystal window installed on the aforementioned Carbonox case. The watch band is made of the same material so it should prove to be just as durable.

Another fact worth mentioning about Luminox 3059 is the light technology it uses. Similar to many other products from the Swiss company, it doesn’t depend on an external light source to glow. Unlike with electroluminescence watches, you don’t have to push any button in order to comfortably use it when dark. The timepiece guarantees a constant glow for up to 25 years. To read more about LLT, click here.

Luminox 3059 is a watch with a water-resistance of up to 200m so no fluid contact at work should worry you. Perhaps what I’m missing here is the stopwatch that you might find useful at work as an EMT.

Considering everything, it’s the most accurate watch on the list but also the most expensive one. Because of its durability, it’s trusted by US Navy Seals so I’m pretty sure it will do just fine in an ambulance, too. It’s up to you if you want to pay that extra “few” bucks for the unique precision it offers.

The Good

  • Carbonox case & band
  • Resistant to water (200m) and shocks
  • Swiss Quartz movement
  • Automatic illumination

The Bad

  • Highest price on the list

Timex Ironman T5E231 Review

It’s one of two Timex watches that managed to get on my TOP 10 list. The T5E231 model from the super-rugged Ironman series is definitely one worth considering as your next purchase.  

This all-black Timex watch was predominantly designed for triathlons and other sport challenges. But it’s simplicity and toughness make it also a great fit for people working in the EMS. And especially those that don’t want to stretch their budget too much.

Any dirt or fluids this watch might encounter during your shift are easily removable thanks to the resin material which both the strap and the case are made of. One thing I’m not too fond of is the acrylic lens. The neat-looking digital display would be safer if protected by a mineral glass instead. At this price can’t have it all though, can you?

Just like most of Timex watches, the Ironman T5E231 model comes with an Indiglo light-up dial and is water-resistant of up to 100M. Basic features like alarms and timers are also included.

The Good

  • Durable resin body
  • Water-resistance (100m)
  • Indiglo Light-Up

The Bad

  • Acrylic lens

Garmin Vivofit 3 Review

Garmin is a brand I have the utmost respect for. They produce some great smart and fitness watches but these often come at a price. Since we don’t want to stretch our budget too much, Garmin Vivofit 3 sounds like a great option to consider. 

The tiny-looking device is actually quite solid. Unlike most smartwatches and fitness bands, it doesn’t need frequent charging. If you ever owned a fitness watch of any kind, the one thing that you probably disliked the most, was the always-dying battery. With the Vivofit 3 model, that worry goes out of the window thanks to the impressive 1-year battery life.

Although officially considered a fitness watch, it’s more than suitable for an EMT or paramedic as well. Thanks to the silicone band and the removable case, you definitely won’t spend too much time cleaning it.

The screen, although still very small, is an improvement on the previous two models of the series. The always-on display mode is definitely a huge plus as you won’t have to turn it on anytime you want to check the time.

The watch is compatible with both Android and iOS devices. Thanks to the Garmin Connect app, you can track your daily activity on your mobile phone or desktop.

Apart from activities like jogging or swimming, you can also track your sleep quality. As an EMT, you need a proper recovery and the Vivofit 3 can help you achieve it.

What I’m probably missing here is a heart rate monitor. On the brighter note, just like any other watch on this list, it’s water-resistant.

Is it the best smartwatch for paramedics on the list? No. Is it a good budget option? Yes. Garmin Vivofit 3 is an extremely basic fitness watch. It doesn’t have many features to boast about but it should stand the test of time at your job. It’s not-too-sophisticated and chunky design might not appeal to many, but at its moderate cost, it’s a low-risk option.

The Good

  • Durable resin body
  • Water-resistance (100m)
  • Indiglo Light-Up

The Bad

  • Looks more like a band than a watch
  • Feature list not that impressive

Casio MCW100H-4AV Review

Finally, something for the fans of chronographs. This unique Casio model is one of the cheapest on the list but still pretty much has all the stuff a good EMT watch should have. 

At first glance, it looks like a heavy-duty timepiece. The MCW100H-4AV is indeed a very durable watch designed to withstand any tough conditions, whether outdoor or at your work.

The watch boasts a neat-looking stainless steel case that’s surrounded by a plastic bezel for improved protection. The black case with some stainless steel elements and an orange resin band complement each other very nicely.

All of the material used with this watch is easy to clean. The window protecting the dial is made of mineral glass. Just like other Casio watches discussed in this article, it’s water-resistant up to 100m.

The analog display of this timepiece is run on Quartz movement. Being a chronograph, the display of the watch includes separate sweeping hands working as a stopwatch. From other basic features, it also includes a date display.

Being honest, I have a thing for chronograph watches. This one looks really neat and is relatively cheap. Unlike other Casio products on this list, unfortunately, it’s not shock-resistant. Still, for the price quoted, it’s another option for you to consider.

The Good

  • Resin band & stainless steel case
  • 100m deep water-resistant
  • Chronograph
  • Backlight

The Bad

  • Lack of shock-resistance

EMT Watch – Features To Look Out For (Summary)

List of features a proper EMT watch should have

The list of products in this article had one goal: to help you pick the best wrist watch for EMT. It was prepared taking into consideration all the important features a proper EMT timepiece should have.

As mentioned at the beginning of this guide, the design of the watch was the least of my worries when preparing the list. Hence, I will fully understand if the watches included above don’t match your style and you are still looking for some other ideas. Worry not – once you know what to look out for when browsing for EMT watches, you will be able to pick the product yourself.

Find the summary of essential EMT watch features below.

Durability

We’ve already agreed that your job is one that will challenge the grit of your watch. To minimize the risk of the product wearing off too quick, look for specific types of:

  • bands/straps/bracelets – pick one that can endure frequent contact with fluids and various types of dirt. The best options here are resin and silicone bands although stainless steel bracelets are also acceptable. All of these are super easy to clean and maintain. Leather straps look more stylish but should be avoided at all costs. Apart from being a nightmare to clean, they are prone to picking up various odors. They might look smart on you but in the long run, it will cause more frustration than joy.
  • watch case – go for enduring and easy-to-clean material options like the ones presented above. My recommendation is resin and silicon.
  • watch glass – this is such an integral part of your wristwatch. In a challenging job like yours, you need a durable glass protecting the dial. Try to avoid cheap plastic materials and go for scratch-resistant alternatives like mineral, sapphire or gorilla glass.
  • water-resistance – regular contact with water and other fluids is a certainty as an EMT. Make sure the watch you are after is water-resistant at least up to 100M.
  • shock-resistance – whenever possible, pick a watch that will withstand any mechanical shocks.
  • low-temp resistance – depending on the climate you work in, a watch resistant to low temperatures might prove to be pivotal. Timepieces without this feature might struggle once the temperature drops below 0.

Accuracy

Go for brands and models with high accuracy movements. That was one of the metrics I first looked into when creating the list of watches in this article. Probably you know best how important the precision is at your job, for example when measuring heartbeat or pulse rate.

Most of the brands disclose information about the accuracy of their watches. If they don’t, you can always contact them to provide it. As a rule of thumb, consider watches with an accuracy of up to 1 seconds per day or less.

Other features

When it comes to budget EMT watches, a calendar and a stopwatch won’t go amiss. If you are after something more high-end, then a heart rate monitor won’t look out of place either.

Additional features like sleep and activity trackers help you strike a healthy balance between your private and work life which should be of high importance for a person working as an EMT or paramedic.

I’m quite curious if my list has satisfied your needs or do are you still in search of the right product? What did you like about this guide and what in your opinion is missing? Please, feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below. I’d love to hear from you and upgrade the content if needed!

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