How to set up and use multiple timers on your Apple Watch

set up and use multiple timers on Apple Watch

If you are anything like me, you multitask throughout the day and have a lot of things to keep track of at the same time! Things like doing a load of laundry while boiling a batch of eggs and wearing a face or hair mask–all at the same time.

To keep track of all the different things, I use timers. In the past, I used my iPhone to keep track of all these things. But now, with watchOS 8+, you can finally have multiple timers active at the same time on your Apple Watch! 

With multiple timers for Apple Watch, you see all your timers in the Watch’s Timer app. And when each of those timers goes off, a timer label pops up on your watch’s screen, so you know which task’s timer is complete. Easy peasy!

So let’s take a look at how you get multiple timers working on your Apple Watch today!

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How to set multiple timers on Apple Watch

The easiest way to set up a timer on your Apple Watch is to ask Siri. 

Say something like: “Hey Siri, set up a time labeled (insert task) for XX minutes.” For example, ask Siri to “set a timer labeled dog wash for 20 minutes.” Use Siri to create a timer on your apple watch

Once you ask, Siri sets your time and labels it so you know which timer expires when! 

To create additional times, repeat the steps for each task. Use the words “labeled, called, and named” when describing your task to Siri. add more than one timer to your apple watch

When a timer expires, your watch alerts you on-screen, and vibrates with a haptic alert or rings depending on how you set up your watch’s sound and haptic settings. timer on apple watch alerts you when it's finished

If you want to repeat a timer that just finished, tap the Repeat button (arrow in a circle icon) at the bottom to start the timer again.

You must ask Siri to label your timers

If you don’t ask Siri to name or label your timer, Siri creates a timer but does not label it with its task name. Apple watch timer with no label or description

Unfortunately, at this time you cannot manually label your timers by typing or scribbling in its name. Currently, only Siri can name a timer.

Manually set up multiple timers on Apple Watch using the Timer app

  1. Open the Timer app on your Apple Watch.
  2. Choose custom or scroll down and choose a recent timer (by length) or tap one of the pre-installed timer options. Apple Watch options for timer app settings and features
    1. You cannot currently label manual timers. You will see the timer’s duration but not a description of the timer.
    2. If you want a timer with a description, ask Siri to create the timer following the steps above.
  3. For custom timers, select the hours, minutes, and seconds, then press Start. custom timer on apple watch
    1. Tap hours, minutes, or seconds; and either scroll with your finder or turn the Digital Crown to adjust the numbers.
    2. You can set a custom timer up to 24 hours in length.
  4. To add additional manual timers, repeat steps 2-3.

Review the timers on your Apple Watch

It’s easy to see what timers you have active on your watch.

  1. Open the Timer app on your watch.
  2. Find all your active timers listed just below the Custom button and above the Recent list. see the active timers on your Apple Watch
  3. Tap on an active timer to see it full screen and access the stop or pause buttons easily. Apple watch active timer details with stop and pause options

How to pause or stop timers on Apple Watch

If you don’t need a timer anymore or if you need to temporarily pause the timer, that’s fairly simple.

Pause your timers apple watch pause a timer

  • Ask Siri to pause a timer by its name. To resume, just ask Siri–make sure you use the name of the timer.
  • Manually pause a timer by opening up your watch’s Timer app and pressing the pause button. Tap the play button to resume.
  • When a timer pauses, it’s grayed out. When it resumes, it returns to its active state.

Stop and cancel your timers use Siri to cancel or stop a timer on Apple watch

  • Ask Siri to stop or cancel a timer by its name. Once canceled, you must create a new timer for that task, if needed.
  • Manually stop a timer by opening the Timer app and scrolling to the timer you wish to cancel. Swipe on it and tap the red X to delete it. stop or cancel multiple timers on Apple Watch using the Timer app
    • You can also tap the timer to expand it full screen and then tap the x icon to remove it.

Awesome ways to use timers on your Apple Watch!

I use timers for a ton of things in my daily world. And it’s so much easier now that I can use my Apple Watch to keep track of them all!

Using timers helps me and the rest of my family stay motivated, organized, and be more productive.

Here are some of my favorite ways to use multiple timers on my Apple Watch. It's easy to set up and use multiple timers on your Apple Watch

  1. Timing my child’s time out in their room. Using my Apple Watch to make sure my child is in time out for the exact amount of time I said is so easy now! 
    1. Using timers with your kids is a great way to manage playtime, screen time, chore time, bedtime, reading or homework time, and of course, nap time! Make the timer the “bad guy” instead of you. It actually works!
  2. Setting the duration of my dog’s wash. The medicated shampoo I use on my big dog requires it to sit on the dog for 10-20 minutes before rinsing. Using a timer on the watch makes this easy so I don’t have to constantly watch the clock.
    1. Timers are good for your bathing too! Set a shower timer or a timer for coloring/straightening your hair or applying a face or hair mask.
  3. Set time for email. I don’t like reading my email as it comes in. Instead, I set about 30 minutes a day to review and clean out my day’s email. Setting a timer for this task keeps me on-point so I stay focused on that email box AND don’t let email run my life!
  4. Use a timer when you need to single task. Okay, back to work. If you have a project for work or home (like vaccuming or laundry) and need to focus on that task alone, set a timer for yourself. Then, do just that one task for the duration of your timer. It’s amazing what a little singletasking can do! 
  5. Give yourself a break. I like using a timer to have some time to myself for relaxing and de-stressing. Give me 15 minutes of deep breathing or corpse pose (basically, laying down) and miracles happen.
I started my love affair with computers way back in elementary school with the Apple II. Since then, I've worked with technology in my career as a media educator and videomaker. I have an MFA in media making from Temple University, where I also taught undergrads as an adjunct faculty member. So I know a thing or two about teaching others and creating how-to guides! After a cancer diagnosis, I turned to mobile technology like my Apple Watch to help me monitor my health throughout my chemotherapy treatment and later, to regain my wellness once in remission. I love sharing how to understand and use mobile tech, like smartwatches and phones, as a tool for empowerment to live our best and healthiest lives!

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