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e60 - Battery low warning

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e60 - Battery low warning

Postby moreno5 » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 14:38:44 UTC

Hi guys,

The other morning I was watching tv with the engine off for about 4 mins when I got a warning on the dash saying that my battery was running low. When I got home, I unlocked the car and could hear the auto changer constantly just changing discs. I started the car as normal with no problem and took it to halfords for a free battery check. They looked at it and said it had a voltage of 12.3 and they thought that seemed fine. The only other thing I can add is that the car turns over a couple of times when starting (not sure if this is just the diesel engine as its my first or something else).

Any ideas? Do I need a new battery? Or do you think it is something else?

I have a 2004 E60 535d
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Postby tc535 » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 14:47:01 UTC

Mine does exactly the same,and some days i jump in start the car and have to reset date and time drives be barmy but i guess its a 'feature' of e60's
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Postby moreno5 » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 14:50:23 UTC

Lovely....sounds great?

Have you had to change the battery?
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Postby RickT » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 15:33:29 UTC

When Halfords checked your battery, how did they test it ?? was it just a case of sticking a multi meter onto it very soon after driving?

What you need to do is, do a reading 10 mins after stopping, then re-read the battery the following morning and see if there has been much of a drop. (you will expect a slight drop, but no more than a 1.00v

The battery may be holding its charge sort term, but not over a longer period of time, therefore the Halfords check means nothing.

Try that first, but i would suspect its the battery on its way out,

Rick
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Postby moreno5 » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 15:37:35 UTC

Yeh thats what I thought, I am going to borrow someones ammeter and then do the tests. Will probably end up buying one. I saw a good Bosch one for £95 delivered.
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Re: e60 - Battery low warning

Postby roadhog » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 15:53:23 UTC

moreno5 wrote:Hi guys,

The other morning I was watching tv with the engine off for about 4 mins when I got a warning on the dash saying that my battery was running low. When I got home, I unlocked the car and could hear the auto changer constantly just changing discs. I started the car as normal with no problem and took it to halfords for a free battery check. They looked at it and said it had a voltage of 12.3 and they thought that seemed fine. The only other thing I can add is that the car turns over a couple of times when starting (not sure if this is just the diesel engine as its my first or something else).

Any ideas? Do I need a new battery? Or do you think it is something else?

I have a 2004 E60 535d
Have you checked whether your car goes to sleep after locking? The red/orange LED near the gearlever should go out approximately 20 minutes after you've locked the car. If not, something might be draining your battery. If it's the original battery then you may well find yourself buying a new one soon, 5 years seems to be the average life span in my experience. I had the ignition on and the radio playing in mine once and got a high battery discharge message. For all their size, the batteries don't like it when you use things like Radio/CD/TV without the engine running. Especially if they've getting on a bit. Or it could be that the car is a bit conservative when estimating what's left in order to ensure the car starts?
New batteries aren't all that expensive, just don't blow your money on a BMW one. They don't make batteries and therefore a good quality aftermarket one will be no worse. I fitted a Bosch with a 4 year warranty to mine and it didn't need coding as some will tell you is the case.

The CD changer hunting may be a separate issue. IIRC (took mine out so can't check), it looks at it's contents on first start. I guess if it doesn't recognise what's in there it keeps going.

The starting could be many things depending on mileage and history. How old is the fuel filter? What condition are the injectors in etc. Mine is usually up and running by the time I've let go of the key and that's after a little misfuelling episode not so long ago. Starter motors are also prone to premature failure on these but that usually establishes itself as slow turning over. Have it checked if it becomes an issue.

Finally, I don't believe we've seen any pictures of your car, watch your back for the picture police. :wink:
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Re: e60 - Battery low warning

Postby moreno5 » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 16:15:01 UTC

roadhog wrote:
moreno5 wrote:Hi guys,

The other morning I was watching tv with the engine off for about 4 mins when I got a warning on the dash saying that my battery was running low. When I got home, I unlocked the car and could hear the auto changer constantly just changing discs. I started the car as normal with no problem and took it to halfords for a free battery check. They looked at it and said it had a voltage of 12.3 and they thought that seemed fine. The only other thing I can add is that the car turns over a couple of times when starting (not sure if this is just the diesel engine as its my first or something else).

Any ideas? Do I need a new battery? Or do you think it is something else?

I have a 2004 E60 535d
Have you checked whether your car goes to sleep after locking? The red/orange LED near the gearlever should go out approximately 20 minutes after you've locked the car. If not, something might be draining your battery. If it's the original battery then you may well find yourself buying a new one soon, 5 years seems to be the average life span in my experience. I had the ignition on and the radio playing in mine once and got a high battery discharge message. For all their size, the batteries don't like it when you use things like Radio/CD/TV without the engine running. Especially if they've getting on a bit. Or it could be that the car is a bit conservative when estimating what's left in order to ensure the car starts?
New batteries aren't all that expensive, just don't blow your money on a BMW one. They don't make batteries and therefore a good quality aftermarket one will be no worse. I fitted a Bosch with a 4 year warranty to mine and it didn't need coding as some will tell you is the case.

The CD changer hunting may be a separate issue. IIRC (took mine out so can't check), it looks at it's contents on first start. I guess if it doesn't recognise what's in there it keeps going.

The starting could be many things depending on mileage and history. How old is the fuel filter? What condition are the injectors in etc. Mine is usually up and running by the time I've let go of the key and that's after a little misfuelling episode not so long ago. Starter motors are also prone to premature failure on these but that usually establishes itself as slow turning over. Have it checked if it becomes an issue.

Finally, I don't believe we've seen any pictures of your car, watch your back for the picture police. :wink:



Haha, I will certainly be sorting out a picture, I actually only bought it a week ago. Am hoping to give it some much needed tlc over the weekend. I have the LED's ready to go into the halo rings to do first but will certainly sort something out.

I have been looking into the whole dension 500 route, but am doing a little research first. Just stumbled across an accessory that you can add to the dension which allows the car to have its own internet hot spot! nice!

I think I will just end up getting a new battery, you never know it may even cure the turnover worry. If it doesn't, I will certainly get that looked at. I saw a nice bosch battery with a 5 yr warranty and is part of the silver range, it comes highly recommended. Its this one;

Max Auto

I may take the cd changer out as I will be using the dension 500 anyway, so that may not be a problem.

I will check if the red light by the gear box goes out. Lets hope its nothing major. The fuel filter cant be more than 6 months old.

thanks for your help so far guys
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Postby paulmc » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 20:36:56 UTC

What did it say? Mine used to say excessive discharge all the time. I disconnected the intelligent charge wire. Never happened again. Flaming stupid thing anyway.
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Postby spuffington » Wed, 18 Aug 2010 20:51:20 UTC

Happened loads in my E70 until I had heavy duty battery fitted. No issues since and that was 4months ago.
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Postby Griswold » Thu, 19 Aug 2010 02:28:39 UTC

Kept getting the same message on my 2006 E60 but the car started up first time every time.

Popped it into my local Kwik Fit who tested it and their tester read "battery unserviceable".

A voltage reading on its own isn't a very good indication of the state of the battery.

As I'd only bought the car a few weeks earlier I took it back to the garage I bought it from and they fitted a new battery. It's been fine since.
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Postby moreno5 » Thu, 19 Aug 2010 06:39:28 UTC

I have bought a new battery, may charge the dealer I bought it from. I will let you know if it cures the problem.

thanks for your help guys.
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Hmmm...

Postby RafflesNH » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 17:01:31 UTC

Griswold wrote:Kept getting the same message on my 2006 E60 but the car started up first time every time.

Popped it into my local Kwik Fit who tested it and their tester read "battery unserviceable".

/snipped/


Glad a new battery sorted your problem, but maybe that wasn't the solution?

I suffered a flat, and after a jump start from another car, took it to a local National Tyres outlet and whilst dealing with a replacement tyre, I got them to do a battery check with their Bosch electronic meter. I specifically asked the young chap if the meter checked battery condition as opposed to just current voltage, and he said yes. So when it came up with a sub-50% 'Battery unserviceable' report, I nearly coughed up for a new battery there and then, until I went home and dug out a receipt for it which said it was only 4 months old!! :roll: To be fair, he did say the battery case did look 'quite new'. I should say it did!:shock:

So, before I returned the next day to get my ordered tyre put on the car, I charged the battery for 10 hours overnight, and it started on the button next morning. Got to National Tyres, and after doing the business with the tyre, asked another fitter to check the battery again for me. Hey presto, the meter showed it 80% and 'Serviceable'. I then told him what his mate had said about battery condition only the day before, and he obligingly replied that they are all told to say that to generate business! I thanked him, and showed him the receipt for the 'new' battery of only 4 months, and he just shook his head embarrassingly! :oops:

Now got a new battery charger that does conditioning/de-sulphuring cycles, so hopefully will get better service from it in future. Can't go throwing £100 away (KwikFit price!) every 4 months or so!

Cheers!

Nigel
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Postby stevobmw » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 18:18:45 UTC

When changing the battery did you get any issues with the i-drive, changed mine from a bmw one to a bosch one and getting warnings all the time of battery drainage, took it back to the indy garage( supposed bmw specialist) they said it needed software updates, so was sent to bmw and they kept the car overnight. Next morning I was told that the battery installed in the car wasn't good enough to do the updates so my old one was put back and was told I would need a bmw one. Can't believe the carry on for a battery. Still have the same old battery tried charging it myself but the indicator light still showing black.
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Postby moreno5 » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 19:23:12 UTC

Oh dear, that doesnt sound good.

I may try and fit my one tomorrow, is their any protocol? Any steps I have to follow while changing it and then on reconnection?

thanks for the advice guys
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Postby roadhog » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 20:13:17 UTC

moreno5 wrote:I may try and fit my one tomorrow, is their any protocol? Any steps I have to follow while changing it and then on reconnection?

Say three Hail Marys and then get stuck in. It'll go wrong if you don't! Muttering the Lords prayer halfway through can't do any harm either. :wink:
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Postby moreno5 » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 20:22:11 UTC

you fill me with such faith
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Postby roadhog » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 20:52:24 UTC

moreno5 wrote:you fill me with such faith

In the immortal words of the leader of the firing squad: "We aim to please" :D

Seriously though, the hardest part is getting to the thing. If you've got active steering you'll get a fault message after the battery is connected but it'll reset once you've driven the car. Possibly the same for the ABS. Nothing else to worry about.
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Postby koo » Fri, 20 Aug 2010 23:18:19 UTC

dont rule out an intermittent alternator, if the new battery ends up draining after a few days use then thats a likely culprit
Used to own a 530d SE Auto E60 2003
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Re: Hmmm...

Postby Griswold » Sat, 21 Aug 2010 05:43:35 UTC

RafflesNH wrote:
Griswold wrote:Kept getting the same message on my 2006 E60 but the car started up first time every time.

Popped it into my local Kwik Fit who tested it and their tester read "battery unserviceable".

/snipped/


Glad a new battery sorted your problem, but maybe that wasn't the solution?

I suffered a flat, and after a jump start from another car, took it to a local National Tyres outlet and whilst dealing with a replacement tyre, I got them to do a battery check with their Bosch electronic meter. I specifically asked the young chap if the meter checked battery condition as opposed to just current voltage, and he said yes. So when it came up with a sub-50% 'Battery unserviceable' report, I nearly coughed up for a new battery there and then, until I went home and dug out a receipt for it which said it was only 4 months old!! :roll: To be fair, he did say the battery case did look 'quite new'. I should say it did!:shock:

So, before I returned the next day to get my ordered tyre put on the car, I charged the battery for 10 hours overnight, and it started on the button next morning. Got to National Tyres, and after doing the business with the tyre, asked another fitter to check the battery again for me. Hey presto, the meter showed it 80% and 'Serviceable'. I then told him what his mate had said about battery condition only the day before, and he obligingly replied that they are all told to say that to generate business! I thanked him, and showed him the receipt for the 'new' battery of only 4 months, and he just shook his head embarrassingly! :oops:

Now got a new battery charger that does conditioning/de-sulphuring cycles, so hopefully will get better service from it in future. Can't go throwing £100 away (KwikFit price!) every 4 months or so!

Cheers!

Nigel


Hi Nigel

When I took the car in to have the battery tested I told the guy that I had just bought it but being second hand the battery wouldn't be covered under warranty as it's specifically excluded in the T's & C's. After he tested it he didn't try to sell me a new battery, rather, he suggested that I go back to the garage I bought it from and ask them to replace it as irrespective of any warranty they have an obligation under the sale of goods act for 31 days from date of purchase.

The garrage didn't even question it when I took it in, the just replaced the battery FOC. :)

My local KwiFit does have a reputation for not suggesting work when it's not needed. Indeed, when I asked them to look at one of my tyres, (there's a separate thread on this), they took the tyre off the wheel, checked it out, fitted a new valve, balanced and refitted it; and as they were unable to find any problem there was no charge. :D
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Postby moreno5 » Sat, 21 Aug 2010 15:40:16 UTC

battery replaced, wasnt too hard and all started ok. Will let you know if anything happens in the next few days...


next job....installing white LED in halo's
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