How Does a Chess Clock Work | Unique Detail Guide Describe by Expert’s


In chess games where players utilize time control, adjoining timers (two switches) can be used. One button stops the clock, and the other one starts the timer. These buttons block the clocks from running simultaneously. The watches may be analog or digital. Before the game begins, the judge has to choose which one is appropriate for the game. Some people want to know how does chess clock work. In this guide, we’ll discuss it.

How does a chess clock work 

If anyone wants to get good at chess then it is very necessary to know how does a chess clock work. The chess clock comprises two different watches that have been combined into one to ensure that only one of them is running simultaneously. The one clock is activated when it’s Black’s turn to move, and the other clock is started whenever it’s the turn of Black. Each player has to perform a specific number of moves within the time allotted. For major Fide tournaments, each participant receives a time limit of 90 minutes to take an overall maximum of forty activities, following which 30 minutes are allotted to every participant to finish the game.

At the beginning of each chess game, Black begins the clock to allow the players of white to make their move. Following each movement, the players push a button that stops their clock and restarts the opponent’s watch. If the time is running out for a single player, the flag will be raised by a “beeping sound.” This player would lose the game since the flag was not submitted to the required number of movements.

how does a chess clock work

Recording moves

If one player has less than five minutes left, the players have to stop rotating. (However, the majority of coaches suggest that, if you’ve got plenty of time, you should notate, even if the opponent is less than five minutes.

Time control 

The flyer for the tournament states that the “time control” for the tournament that is coming up will be Game 30/d5. What exactly does that mean? The first number following “Game” is the number of minutes each team allows to complete their moves. In this case, the player has 30 minutes. “d/5” is the number that indicates how long “d/5” means the “delay” that also use for each move. Thus, in this scenario, the players have 30 minutes, with a five-second delay per move. This is the standard time control for the majority of scholastic tournaments.

There can be various time limits in several adult or “open” tournaments that let you complete a certain amount of movements in a certain period. However, in academic events, these are useless.

Before start game of chess

White pieces will be the first move. Players shake hands, and the Black side presses the play button. White pieces move and then follow by pressing the close button on the clock. If your opponent makes an attack, he’ll hit the button to his left that stops his timer and then starts yours. Every move, you hit the button. It may seem tedious at first, but then it becomes a skill you can master effortlessly and swiftly.

End a game with a timer

The management of time on the Chessboard is interesting, and there is a lot to learn about this subject. The final 5 minutes of the game are typically crucial in games lasting 30 minutes or more. Whatever the timing strategy on an analog display, there’s a “red “flag” that will rise when the time nears expiration. If it falls, it signifies that the time has passed. The player whose time has expired has to forfeit the game, while the opponent claims the victory. In addition, there are some rules and etiquette to follow for later.

Types of chess clock

Above we discuss how does a chess clock work. Now we will discuss types of chess clocks. Let’s have a look at the types of a chess clock.


In the past, the first-ever chess clock use to keep track of the time spent in the chess game was made at the beginning of the 19 century. Century. In hourglasses, clocks with sand were the most common clocks, which kept an eye on the amount of time needed to complete the game. Each participant has an hourglass to keep track of the time. They eventually replace with two analog clocks. The time on one’s clock starts to tick when the other player makes a move and then punches the clock.

Read more: How to castle in chess

how does a chess clock work

Analog clock 

On the analog timer, a flag place between 11 and 12 on each clock. When the minute hand is nearer to the 12:00 mark, the tip touches the flag, and the clock advances. This shifts the flag away from its vertical location to a horizontal position. When the hand is at 12:00 once more, the flag drops. If the player doesn’t make any movements within the period, it will count as a loss.

Digital clock 

Nowadays, digital clocks that enable players to better control their time are becoming increasingly well-known. When a player makes a move, they will punch the clock, and this saves time.

Setting the chess clock

Both analog and digital clocks are easily accessible. Digital clocks prefer due to their versatility and exciting play modes. However, many still prefer the simplicity and the classic analog look. Digital clocks generally count down. It is time to stop counting down at the point of the 0:00 mark. You can set digital clocks using various modes and methods. Therefore we’ll focus on the standard-setting process to develop the classic analog clock. Analog watches run battery-powered. However, they usually charge by tension springs and require regular winding. Don’t over-wind them until they are snug or your timer could not function as you expected.

A gentle, snug breeze is sufficient. Analog clocks feature hands and a dial that count up. The player’s expiration time indicates the appearance of a tiny signal that is a red flag. For example, at the minute hand is at 12 hours, the call will raise. Once it gets to 12, the “flag falls.” In a game, the player whose “flag has fallen” is eliminated from the competition (except in some instances!) Controlling time using two knobs located on the side of the clock with one knob per display. You can turn this knob as you view the clock’s face.

To set the timer for a game lasting not more than an hour (“Game in 30 minutes,” which is 30 mines per game), Watch the side of the clock while you set it, first set on one of the sides to 5:30, after that the opposite side to 5:45. Beginning at 5:30 in this instance, you will get an end time of 6 o’clock, which is a good standard for games that vary between 5 minutes to more than an hour. The player can determine what time remains by adding the 6 clocks to the time that display.

When you’re with a partner and have just thirty minutes to take part, then set the timings to 5:45. You’ll each get 15 minutes left before the time runs out at 6:00, and one of the flags is blown. The majority of players feel overwhelmed when their time is shorter than 15 minutes or five minutes. Specific competitions are based entirely around the five-minute game. Everybody knows it as Blitz Chess. It’s a type of chess that’s thrilling and enjoyable to play if already comfortable with the game.

how does a chess clock work

Basic requirements for chess clock

  • In tournaments, the clocks must function according to FIDE’s rules;
  • The display needs to clearly display the remaining time for the player’s next move.
  • The display must seen at a distance of 3 meters;
  • At 10 meters away, the player must be in a position to clearly observe the moving clock hands;
  • There should be a visible sign at the watch display in a time-control passing scenario to clearly indicate when the players can pass the one-time limit.
  • When the clock is operated by battery and has a battery, it should have a “low battery” sign;
  • Even when the battery goes down, it is essential to ensure that it runs for a minimum of ten hours;
  • For time control that is passed, Pay particular attention paid to the announcements.
  • for delay-based timing or systems that accumulate, if the time control has been pushed by a participant, the clock must not be able to add time;
  • In the event of the time penalty, a judge can give corrections only during the following 60 minutes;
  • By a simple adjustment, it should be simple to change the timing;
  • The clocks need to be accompanied by a simple manual. If FIDE napprove the watch, the rules must clearly state.
best requirement

Tips for innovative time management

The chess clock provides intriguing energy to the sport. The best players attempt to use the timing to their advantage by making easy strategies (memorized openings) quicker, thereby making the most time available for different parts in the game that might require more analysis. Each player will find an equal time to begin. Are you able to make quick moves throughout the opening to gain time? Are you willing to put in more period of the door to attempt to make an impression on the board initially and then hope to gain the advantage to the advantage later? Monitoring your time and balance precisely is vital.

Knowing how to play opening moves will help recognize advantages you could achieve at the beginning of the game. Still, it also can aid you in avoiding wasting time in the future. If you can make your opponent think through the opening, you may play to get a time imbalance that favors you. This could have benefits for your psychological also throughout the remaining portion of the course of the game. Consider the opponent’s timing and make a few plans ahead. If your opponent is behind and is thinking hard about YOUR time.

If you’re in a position to gain advantages in time when your adversary is speeding up, do not fall into the trap of doing things quickly when you don’t have to. Instead, use this advantage to think a few steps ahead and respond swiftly to force your opponent to need to think about his own time or make an error. Are you running over your time? Don’t ever flag yourself a flag! … or, at least, when you’re getting close to the close of the game. If you can stop the game, checkmate it or take all your opponent’s pieces before the flag spot and you draw!


In the chess game clock is the most important thing. If you want to win chess, you have to know how the chess clock work and everything about chess. Set your timer so you can play more confidently! If you have any additional questions, you can share them with us by commenting below.

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