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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 06-18-2012, 03:17 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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should i buy the battery charger

Hello Peeps,

I am about to lay my hands on the ride on this Saturday..first time BMW owner and i am pretty excited. I mentioned in my previous post that it is a 2004 X3 3.0. Once i get it, I will only get to use it every 10 days for 3-4days. I have read in the forum that it may not be good to leave the vehicle without turning the key for long.....but is 10 days long? Or is the bmw advanced charger the first best investment that i should make for the vehicle. I am not even sure if they sell them in Aus or can i get a standard battery trickle charger from an auto shop to do the job ??

Your assistance is much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 06-18-2012, 07:07 AM
Frenchx3 Frenchx3 is offline
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I have had a couple of strange things occur on my X3 while after sitting for extended periods. The last was a couple of months ago when I was away on vacation. It sat at the airport for 9 days. When I first started it up the stability control indicator came on and stayed on for a day or two. It finally reset by itself and hasn't come back on. I did try hitting the switch on the dash that allows you deactivate it but to no avail. The battery had plenty of juice and it started right up so I don't think this is a matter of a low battery. If it were me, I would go without it first to see if you have any issues...

Last edited by Frenchx3; 06-18-2012 at 07:10 AM.
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  #3  
Old 06-18-2012, 09:15 AM
ghpup ghpup is offline
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I recommend a battery tender if you are not going to be using the vehicle regularly and for extended periods. The issue noticed by FrX3 may likely be a battery issue. I have been told repeatedly by my SA that when a battery is lower than peak charge weird warning lights are activated as those systems are not fully powered during start-up. A friend who had an X6 was told the same thing regarding the extended driving (20 minutes in a single trip without shut-off). Since putting my X3 on a tender regularly I have not seen the odd warning lights.
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  #4  
Old 06-18-2012, 09:40 AM
kenza kenza is offline
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Smash,
Do not get a standard battery charger. Try to find a smart charger like this one: http://www.amazon.com/Ctek-Battery-C...attery+charger

Cheers
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  #5  
Old 06-18-2012, 10:12 AM
al_macaroni al_macaroni is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ghpup View Post
I recommend a battery tender if you are not going to be using the vehicle regularly and for extended periods. The issue noticed by FrX3 may likely be a battery issue. I have been told repeatedly by my SA that when a battery is lower than peak charge weird warning lights are activated as those systems are not fully powered during start-up. A friend who had an X6 was told the same thing regarding the extended driving (20 minutes in a single trip without shut-off). Since putting my X3 on a tender regularly I have not seen the odd warning lights.
+1 for the Battery Tender. I've been using the Battery Tender 800 Waterproof 12 V charger on my X3 whenever I know it is going to sit in the garage for more than a few days.

The cigarette lighter connection attachment is very handy when connecting it to the BMW when you are parked indoors.
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  #6  
Old 06-18-2012, 03:35 PM
UberXY UberXY is offline
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I use a battery tender on all three of my BMWs, my Porsche, my BMW motorcycle, and my boat. There is nothing special about the battery in your X3 that deserves the extra money you would pay to have a BMW logo on a "special" battery tender. Heck I don't even like paying extra for the Battery Tender brand name.
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  #7  
Old 06-18-2012, 03:44 PM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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Thanks for the info guys. I have never used a battery tender before, If I connect and leave it on for 9 days or so...does it overcharge the battery? Or does it cut off once the battery charges up?
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  #8  
Old 06-18-2012, 03:54 PM
usaret usaret is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smashbeem View Post
Thanks for the info guys. I have never used a battery tender before, If I connect and leave it on for 9 days or so...does it overcharge the battery? Or does it cut off once the battery charges up?
A lot of good info here:

http://batterytender.com/resources/f...sked-questions

They are the same company that makes the BMW Chargers. I've used one since 2004 on three different BMW's and I've never had a charger or a battery issue.

http://www.amazon.com/BMW-Genuine-82...pr_product_top
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  #9  
Old 06-18-2012, 05:39 PM
MaliBMW MaliBMW is offline
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i also have a 2004 x3, when my battery died after sitting out for months, i used Schumacher Speed Charge 1.5 amp battery charger and maintainer. Only $20. it charges and keeps it charged. You don't need any expensive bmw battery charger. next time, instead of worrying about your x3's battery dying, just disconnect the battery cables.
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  #10  
Old 06-18-2012, 07:47 PM
Supercourse Supercourse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaliBMW View Post
i also have a 2004 x3, when my battery died after sitting out for months, i used Schumacher Speed Charge 1.5 amp battery charger and maintainer. Only $20. it charges and keeps it charged. You don't need any expensive bmw battery charger. next time, instead of worrying about your x3's battery dying, just disconnect the battery cables.
Agree that the $20 Schumacher looks like a really good buy for a smart charger that shuts itself off when the final phase of charging is complete.

Some of the more expensive ones do pulse charging that may help to remove sulfation on the plates.

The Deltran/BMW one doesn't claim to do that, but I guess the value is in a more rugged-looking product and better user interface (easier to see what's its doing than on these new smaller chargers).

Not sure that disconnecting the battery every time would be a good idea for the OP.

The voltage spike when reconnecting has been known to cause inconvenient problems.

The X3 is better than some other BMWs in this respect but not immune to sensors getting fooled and triggering fault codes.

And there is the risk of closing the hatch when disconnected and not be able to open it without a bit of crawling around.

Then there is the loss of OBC stored values, radio settings, clock, and the need to restore windows for anti-trapping, etc.

A disconnected battery is going to drain over time anyway.

Once the vehicle has gone into sleep mode (after about 20mins.) the draw should be quite low, and that low activity can be better for the health of the battery than being disconnected.
(Certainly true for a cold battery in winter - not positive if it applies generally.)

If idle for several months, battery disconnection might be the way to go.
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  #11  
Old 06-18-2012, 08:24 PM
spokelizard spokelizard is online now
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Thanks for the reminder about the battery tender. I'm having surgery next week and will be laid up, unable to drive, for about 6 weeks. So I just ordered the battery tender out of an abundance of caution, want the car to start up when I'm ready!
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  #12  
Old 06-19-2012, 01:28 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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thanks for the excellent info people. I am going to check what the BMW dealer here in australia charge for it...bet it would be thrice than what you guys get it for in States....!! Next thing would be to check in one of the auto shops to see what similar product can be purchased. I take that the advanced charger would be of some low voltage one that can maitain a battery but not re charge a dead battery ?

Thanks.
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  #13  
Old 06-19-2012, 07:15 AM
Frenchx3 Frenchx3 is offline
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Actually battery tenders output a steady voltage (~ 12 Vdc) at very low amperage...(750mA).
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  #14  
Old 06-20-2012, 01:52 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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CTEK MXS5.0 ... anyone heard of it? would it do the job ?

http://www.ctekbatterychargers.com.au/ctek-mxs50.html
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  #15  
Old 06-20-2012, 05:06 AM
kenza kenza is offline
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Smash, yes, that CTek should do it.
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  #16  
Old 06-20-2012, 06:10 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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Thanks Kenza, I will go and get one...getting excited..2 more days to go before I pick up the bimmer
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  #17  
Old 06-26-2012, 03:12 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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Did not manage to pick the charger as I could not find one in my local store. I took a pic of the battery so I have the tech details and so I can buy the right charger on line. I have ordered the ctek max 5. But when I looked closely in the pic, I realised there is an inspection window and the colour it should be in. Mine is black on colour and I won't get back to my bimmer for another 9 days. Hope it is going to be ok as it's not going to be started for these 9 days..!!
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  #18  
Old 06-26-2012, 04:08 AM
elevatorguy925 elevatorguy925 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smashbeem View Post
Did not manage to pick the charger as I could not find one in my local store. I took a pic of the battery so I have the tech details and so I can buy the right charger on line. I have ordered the ctek max 5. But when I looked closely in the pic, I realised there is an inspection window and the colour it should be in. Mine is black on colour and I won't get back to my bimmer for another 9 days. Hope it is going to be ok as it's not going to be started for these 9 days..!!
Mine has been black since I bought the car and it starts fine, I charged it with a battery charger overnight and still stayed black. I am pretty sure the window only monitors the specific gravity of the cell that it is in, but can indicate a problem with battery health.
There are a lot of posts about the battery, if it gets weak, gremlins appear and the vehicle will have various faults randomly occur. I will probably replace mine pretty soon as it is about 6 years old, I would be curious of what the dealer says/does about your battery.
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  #19  
Old 06-28-2012, 12:46 AM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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should i connect the battery charger direct to he battery or to the jump start connector in the engine compartment ?
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  #20  
Old 06-28-2012, 06:15 AM
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Dominic49 Dominic49 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smashbeem View Post
should i connect the battery charger direct to he battery or to the jump start connector in the engine compartment ?
either works, if you get a small battery tender you can opt for the cigarette lighter adapter
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  #21  
Old 06-28-2012, 05:31 PM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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thanks mate..
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  #22  
Old 06-29-2012, 09:03 AM
spokelizard spokelizard is online now
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My battery charger arrived and my X3 is plugged in. Got the official BMW charger. Red light at the start, while it was charging. It's green now, and hopefully will stay green for the next 6 weeks or so that I'm not driving.

Shout out to EBMWParts.com. I've used them before, and they have the best customer service, fastest turnaround to shipping, and lowest prices of any of the online BMW OEM parts dealers I've found. I needed the charger ASAP, and although I'm an Amazon Prime member, it worth the shopping cost to get the item much faster from EBMWParts.com rather than the BMW dealer that ships the part for Amazon. Price without shipping was $53.82.
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  #23  
Old 06-29-2012, 11:35 AM
kenza kenza is offline
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Good price Spoke!
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  #24  
Old 06-29-2012, 05:20 PM
smashbeem smashbeem is offline
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Thanks Spoke. I live in Australia, not sur eif the battery charger from that site would work. I have e-mailed them anyways to find out bot the functionality and shipping charges. At the moment, I am considering CTek MSX5.0, cost $95 (goes for about $150 in my local auto shop).
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  #25  
Old 06-30-2012, 06:38 AM
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timfitz63 timfitz63 is offline
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G'day, Down Under!

Spent quite a bit of time visiting Australia, but never made it to Brisbane except to connect through the airport on my way to Cairns. Always enjoyed my visits to your country!

Another product you might consider (not sure if its available to you, though) is the one I use: BatteryMINDer. In addition to keeping the battery charged, these products are supposed to recondition (desulfate) the battery. I use one on different vehicles that I store for long periods of time, and have never had weak batteries. I don't have definitive proof of their desulfating capability, but I've used one on my X3 for periods of time. When I first bought my X3, the the little 'eye' on the battery was dark, even after driving it regularly for several months. After some regular use of the BatteryMINDer, the battery 'eye' now shows green again. Take it for what it's worth...
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