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E90/E91/E92/E93 (2006 - 2013)
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  #1  
Old 03-12-2013, 08:09 AM
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Hound Passer Hound Passer is offline
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Battery Issue ('11 E93)

About a month ago I was getting a warning notice on my 2011 E93 saying my battery wasn't completely charging. I took it in and the dealer couldn't find issue but recharged it for two hours and the problem went away.

Last week I was waiting for someone and turned of the engine but kept the radio on. After about 5 min I got a yellow battery light so I immediately turned the car off completely. I had to take the car again anyway for the battery cable recall so asked the dealer to look at this issue.

The dealer ran an energy diagnoses and reported back I basically abused the battery -- listening to the radio w/o engine on, kept door open too long, etc. for a total of 22 times. That doesn't mesh w/ my own recollections. When I'm in the car I'm driving. I almost never have it in accessory mode. There are times when the trunk is left open for a bit -- not sure how that affects battery life. Also my iPod is connected 24/7 but I would think when you have the iPod option BMW takes that into account when they design the electrical system.

Bottom line: dealer is telling me it's not covered under warranty because I used the battery in a way it wasn't designed to be used -- even though I can't recall putting stress on the battery as stated.

I've owned 4 other BMWs, my last previous one was an '07 E93 w/ pretty much same options as my current one. My driving and use habits have not changed, and I've never had this issue before.

Any suggestions how I can get the battery replaced under warranty? I think the computer is BS, but it's what BMW is going to rely one, not my word.
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  #2  
Old 03-12-2013, 09:01 AM
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fun2drive fun2drive is offline
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I would request a meeting with the service manager over this. Request they show you where it states you can't run the radio in the manual. I assume you are not driving the car much which accounts for their telling you that you are not using the car correctly. If would help you battery life if you use a battery tender when you are not driving it as I do. You might get the dealer to replace this battery but not another and my guess is this will happen again if you don't take steps to help your battery out if you are not driving the car a lot and just use it for short trips.
Also and my guess is the dealer didn't say anything about this is that not locking the car pulls the battery down since it pulses the system every 4 hours and checks everything. I would suggest you lock the car even in your garage. I discovered this about a year ago that the car continues to check systems unless locked...
Hope this helps some...
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  #3  
Old 03-12-2013, 09:15 AM
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Hound Passer Hound Passer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fun2drive View Post
Also and my guess is the dealer didn't say anything about this is that not locking the car pulls the battery down since it pulses the system every 4 hours and checks everything. I would suggest you lock the car even in your garage. I discovered this about a year ago that the car continues to check systems unless locked...
Hope this helps some...
Did not know that. Good to know. Still a bit puzzled why this E93 is so different from my '07. I though the mid-life updates were mostly cosmetic.
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  #4  
Old 03-12-2013, 09:54 AM
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This battery issue is not unheard of .... can search this forum .... I think Kat is the most recent to firmly press her dealer for a warranty battery replacement.

I've one replaced under warranty.

Practically you should get the trickle charger battery tender.

Buried in your maintenance documents is likely a warning that you should drive 10 miles per day or so to keep the charge up. I don't recall ever hearing that you can't play the radio.

Another practical suggestion is to take the car to another dealer that might own up to BMW's warranty obligations rather than search for "22 times" where you abused the battery .... that's just ridiculous imo and I doubt they could direct you to a consumer warning in your warranty documentation that says don't play the radio with the engine off.
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  #5  
Old 03-12-2013, 10:57 AM
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Hound Passer Hound Passer is offline
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Originally Posted by laser View Post
This battery issue is not unheard of .... can search this forum .... I think Kat is the most recent to firmly press her dealer for a warranty battery replacement.

I've one replaced under warranty.

Practically you should get the trickle charger battery tender.

Buried in your maintenance documents is likely a warning that you should drive 10 miles per day or so to keep the charge up. I don't recall ever hearing that you can't play the radio.

Another practical suggestion is to take the car to another dealer that might own up to BMW's warranty obligations rather than search for "22 times" where you abused the battery .... that's just ridiculous imo and I doubt they could direct you to a consumer warning in your warranty documentation that says don't play the radio with the engine off.
Thanks. I'm going to the dealer in a few min. and will talk w/ svc. manager before bumping it up to BMW directly. But I was always under the impression that dealers had no leeway on warranty repairs and had to get prior auth directly from BMW. Am I misinformed on that?
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  #6  
Old 03-12-2013, 10:57 AM
Lufthansa Lufthansa is offline
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"I would suggest you lock the car even in your garage. I discovered this about a year ago that the car continues to check systems unless locked...
Hope this helps some..."

One caveat to this advice would be if you have the factory alarm - the system and the 'clown' nose would be an electrical draw.
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  #7  
Old 03-12-2013, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hound Passer View Post
Thanks. I'm going to the dealer in a few min. and will talk w/ svc. manager before bumping it up to BMW directly. But I was always under the impression that dealers had no leeway on warranty repairs and had to get prior auth directly from BMW. Am I misinformed on that?
The dealer does need to be reimbursed by BMW but why BMW is so reluctant to own up to these battery issues surprises me.

I think you are in a strong position with 4 prior BMW's, no change in your driving habits, pretty clear to me that there is a battery issue, maybe a design issue BMW doesn't want to own up to.

I think if you are polite but firm with the dealer you should prevail.
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  #8  
Old 03-12-2013, 07:26 PM
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fun2drive fun2drive is offline
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BMW alarm system in an E93 hardly pulls any more than a little over 0.04A which is normal. I will cause some draw but nothing close to the draw leaving the car unlocked is.
Also you could well have received a battery that was not up to the task. It happens.
I think you stand an excellent chance to get this battery replaced once.
Remember this if you don't plan to keep the car that long don't bother with a battery tender. If you like the car and want to keep it a long time then invest in one.
Battery plus registration is a 500 buck bill so a 25 buck battery tender is a good investment...

Lastly there isn't that huge a change in the pre LCI vs post LCI E93 regarding systems that effect the charging system of the car it is pretty much the same as the 07 was...

Last edited by fun2drive; 03-12-2013 at 07:28 PM.
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  #9  
Old 03-12-2013, 08:19 PM
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MP3_E46 MP3_E46 is offline
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Virtually all the lower mileage/ fairly new cars with battery issues are E93s!

I've a few threads on this. Long story short: if you make any kind of decent money per hour you'll waste more than a new battery costs arguing with the dealer. Try reconditioning the battery with a CTEK 7002 or buy a new battery. DIY install is easy as it the coding assuming you know how to use a windows computer

If you recondition pull the -ve lead off first so as not to expose the car to higher than normal voltages. I've successfully reconditioned two dead batteries but not enough time has elapsed to say how many extra years that buys.
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  #10  
Old 03-12-2013, 08:44 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Checking in here:

Yes, I did get my battery replaced at ~23K with the "unfavorable driver behaviour" code being thrown for my opening and closing the driver's door too many times before 'drive off'. Since then, I've acquired a CTEK unit and plug it into the car after every car wash session.

Bottom line, the E93's are very finicky about power usage. Between the top and the electric trunk pull down they are power hogs.

Any and everything that can be done to mitigate the power draw is a good thing.
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  #11  
Old 03-12-2013, 09:30 PM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hound Passer View Post
The dealer ran an energy diagnoses and reported back I basically abused the battery -- listening to the radio w/o engine on, kept door open too long, etc. for a total of 22 times.

This is interesting!

When you meet with your dealer's service dept, as you certainly should, ask them for all the detail. By that I mean time & date of logged item, duration; power draw and battery level.

For instance, keeping the door open too long - kindly post their response on that one - are door opening and closings date/time stamped in a log? Otherwise, how could they show that?

And so on. Insist on the whole printout - everything. If they refuse, you have a Small Claim option and, being sympathetic to the little guy, their behavior may bring you a judgement.

Good luck! Post results!
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  #12  
Old 03-13-2013, 09:11 AM
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Hound Passer Hound Passer is offline
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Thanks for all the responses. I spoke w/ the svc. mgr. when I went to p/u the car & the conversation ended up w/ him emailing BMW requesting a one time replacement. We'll see what happens - not holding my breath.
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  #13  
Old 03-13-2013, 09:18 AM
jbyron jbyron is offline
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Surely they'll make good on this.
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  #14  
Old 03-14-2013, 06:30 AM
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CALWATERBOY CALWATERBOY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic_Kat View Post
Checking in here:

Yes, I did get my battery replaced at ~23K with the "unfavorable driver behaviour" code being thrown for my opening and closing the driver's door too many times before 'drive off'. Since then, I've acquired a CTEK unit and plug it into the car after every car wash session.

Bottom line, the E93's are very finicky about power usage. Between the top and the electric trunk pull down they are power hogs.

Any and everything that can be done to mitigate the power draw is a good thing.

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Eeeeek! Exactly how many door opens and closes violate corporate policy? Criteria like that should be a Sticky - perhaps BMW will write us a letter of specification as the info ain't in the manual. Bentley neither - glaring deficiency!

Boy o boy o boy....opening that door must drain big watts....poor li'l BMW battery just can't take that....being frightfully efficient, it has little amperage to give before the alternator must charge!

.

Last edited by CALWATERBOY; 03-15-2013 at 10:53 AM.
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  #15  
Old 03-14-2013, 03:28 PM
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Nordic_Kat Nordic_Kat is offline
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Originally Posted by CALWATERBOY View Post

Eeeeek! Exactly how many door opens and closes did you do to violate corporate policy?
.
15 per car wash X 48 car washes per year X 3 years
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Old 03-15-2013, 08:18 AM
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Good news... BMW is going to replace the battery. According to the energy diagnosis the car was woken up 22 times in the past 6 weeks. BMW considers a wake up anytime you do something in the car w/o being moved, but even still that doesn't seem all that extreme to kill 60% of a battery. At any rate happy to get a fresh start, and at $500 I think I'll start locking my car at night.
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Old 03-15-2013, 08:25 AM
SpartanGA SpartanGA is offline
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good to hear.

I will start locking my e93 also in the garage.

weird.
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  #18  
Old 03-15-2013, 11:21 AM
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bmwrocks bmwrocks is offline
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Good to hear they are helping you. As well they should.

Not only do I not lock my car in the garage, I leave the keys in the ignition. I am going to reconsider that habit, although it has been ok for nearly 2 years.
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Old 03-15-2013, 11:51 AM
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MP3_E46 MP3_E46 is offline
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I took the time and tested with a multi-meter in series with the battery. The car went into sleep mode locked or unlocked. Since the new battery we've never locked ours in the garage - problems are still gone

A car waking up every four hours for a diag check should not drain a two year old 90Ah battery, but what do I know? Oh wait I have three Engineering degrees, the first one was very heavy in EE

As stated previously I've never had this issue with even weekend cars. My 2010 MX-5 has done ~250 miles since early October (I just looked at its maintenance records). Took it out yesterday and had zero issues. Since new that car has pretty much been a third vehicle.
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