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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 5 Series > E39 (1997 - 2003)

E39 (1997 - 2003)
The BMW 5-Series (E39 chassis) was introduced in the United States as a 1997 model year car and lasted until the 2004 when the E60 chassis was released. The United States saw several variations including the 525i, 528i, 530i and 540i. -- View the E39 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 12-31-2011, 02:36 PM
Fooz Fooz is offline
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Mein Auto: 2002 530i
draining battery issue

I have a BMW 2002 530i. First my radio wouldn't turn on. Then I got the radio to turn on but there was constant static noise while the car was running, also the radio light was not on when the radio was on. The car battery was draining everyday. If I turned the car off it would not turn back on. I have since disconnected everything and got the static noise to stop but the draining of the battery is continuing. I have taken my car to 3 bmw dealerships and no one can figure out the problem.
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  #2  
Old 12-31-2011, 06:03 PM
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Trebbia Trebbia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fooz View Post
no one can figure out the problem.
How much is the parasitic drain?

Did their measurement change when they removed the FSU?

Did it change when they removed each of the fuses, one by one?
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  #3  
Old 12-31-2011, 06:57 PM
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blz456 blz456 is offline
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Yeah one of the most common occurrences in these cars is the FSU draining the battery. I would check on that.
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  #4  
Old 12-31-2011, 09:51 PM
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gibo58 gibo58 is offline
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battery drain

I have same vehicle and suffered from battery drain also. As others have stated the usual suspect is the fsu, they are not very expensive so change it out as it will more than likely fix the problem.
Once you change the fsu, recharge your battery. If the battery is old it may need replacing as well.

Cheers
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  #5  
Old 12-31-2011, 11:14 PM
Burning2nd Burning2nd is offline
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parasitic draw is one of the harder things to diag... If the dealer didnt figure it out the first time... ID stop going back to them alltogether...

Get someone who knows what they are doing... and then get your money back from the dealer.....

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  #6  
Old 01-01-2012, 04:22 AM
JimLev JimLev is offline
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Find someone that can connect an amp meter in series with the battery lead to measure the battery current the car draws when it is shut off.
After you turn the key off the draw is somewhere around 5-10 amps but quickly drops to a few amps. As the various modules power down (after 16 minutes) the current draw drops off to less than 0.025 amps, or 25 MA. When the trunk light goes off the car should be in "sleep mode". You need to have the passenger front door and the trunk open before you start.
Opening any door after the car enters sleep mode will wake it up, you will then need to wait another 16 minutes fo it to go back to sleep.
Your readings will be higher because something isn't shutting down. After the 16 min you start pulling fuses until you find one that makes the current draw drop. Then you look at what curcuits that fuse feeds power too.
It could be the FSU, the amplifier, or any of the other modules.
3 dealers couldn't find it, hope they didn't charge you.
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  #7  
Old 01-01-2012, 09:11 AM
jygesq jygesq is offline
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pull the FSU first. www.540i6.com they all do that fsu. /see what happens after you pull it.
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  #8  
Old 01-01-2012, 01:49 PM
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bluebee bluebee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fooz View Post
I have taken my car to 3 bmw dealerships
I find that hard to believe.

The procedure for isolating a parasitic drain is well established.

It's covered, for instance, in this thread:
- DIY how to test a BMW E39 battery & alternator
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  #9  
Old 01-04-2012, 08:29 AM
Fooz Fooz is offline
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i have checked all of the above. i'm to the point where everything has been disconnected, amps, radio, navigation, dice ipod adapter. i disconnect my battery everytime i park my car
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  #10  
Old 01-04-2012, 12:56 PM
vetsbmw vetsbmw is offline
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I had the exact same problem a couple of years ago and found my answer right here on the bimmerfest forum. I am a serious girly girl with NO CAR repair experience and high distrust for mechanics and most of all dealerships. But thanks to my tenacity and intelligence I researched the problem and bam thank goodness for this site!! I have '02 - 530i as well and found my battery draining every other day - it was truly frustrating. I called several mechanics and the dealership who all minimally wanted to charge me $700 to hook me up to a computer to find the problem. I found the part I needed for $75 and paid a mechanic $50 to replace it. BY MYSELF!! The problem is very common in these models with the part giving out within 5-7 years - it will need to be replaced again. I will go home and find my receipt and post for you tomorrow. I wish I could remember off hand but let me dig for you and I promise I will post it.
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  #11  
Old 01-04-2012, 12:59 PM
vetsbmw vetsbmw is offline
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Found it! You need to replace the "Final Stage Unit/Blower Motor Resistor - trust me this is your battery drainage problem! GOOD LUCK!
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  #12  
Old 01-04-2012, 01:00 PM
vetsbmw vetsbmw is offline
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I was doing the same thing! Disconnecting your battery every night is annoying - Final Stage Unit/Blower Motor Resistor is what you need.
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  #13  
Old 01-05-2012, 06:23 AM
jygesq jygesq is offline
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that is two of us suggesting same thing

Quote:
Originally Posted by vetsbmw View Post
I was doing the same thing! Disconnecting your battery every night is annoying - Final Stage Unit/Blower Motor Resistor is what you need.
FSU
disconnect it and see what happens!
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  #14  
Old 01-05-2012, 07:00 AM
n0_odles n0_odles is offline
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Mein Auto: e39 (525i)
here's a few clips of what the FSU looks like as well as how to remove it...the first one is for an e39, it isn't shot real well, however gives you perspective of what you're gonna be looking for. the second one is shot in a step by step process for a e46, which gives you a much better idea of how to remove it. i'm running into the same issue you are, and have since removed my battery altogether and will probably end up doing this myself...thanks for posting this up, because i was going to do the same! ha!

- e39
- e46
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  #15  
Old 01-05-2012, 11:22 AM
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Trebbia Trebbia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fooz View Post
i have checked all of the above.
So what's the parasitic drain then?

And what was it when you removed the FSU & fuses?

Nobody is going to guess their way through this.

Show us a picture of your test apparatus and then maybe we can help you.
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