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Hello,

Has anyone experienced a battery failure on their 2011 550 yet? My car is 4 months old and last week started to display a "replace battery" error. The car never had any symptoms of a bad battery, however when I took it to the dealer, they tell me I need to buy a new battery. They say they can't find anything wrong, however the computer tells them that I left the fob in the car one time and it kept waking the computer up. They are contributing the bad battery to this and said it was my fault. Anyone heard of anything like this before? They are not covering this under warranty.

Thanks, Steve
 

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Everything's Bigger in TX
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Hello,

Has anyone experienced a battery failure on their 2011 550 yet? My car is 4 months old and last week started to display a "replace battery" error. The car never had any symptoms of a bad battery, however when I took it to the dealer, they tell me I need to buy a new battery. They say they can't find anything wrong, however the computer tells them that I left the fob in the car one time and it kept waking the computer up. They are contributing the bad battery to this and said it was my fault. Anyone heard of anything like this before? They are not covering this under warranty.

Thanks, Steve
I have heard of a couple of issues with this. I would be willing to bet it's related to the logic in the fancy pants clutched alternator not coming on enough to keep the battery charged.

Tell your dealer that it's unacceptable for the battery to have died already and it's under warranty. If they still say no, call BMWNA or find another dealer. You should not, under any reason, have to replace the battery on a 1 year old car unless you're trying to run a small city off it on a regular basis.
 

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The previous generation 5 had battery problems too, particularly those with Comfort Access. Some dealers replaced their battery under warranty and others did not. I guess it just depends on the dealer.

I think if they can find a reason that it is the owners fault (short trips or leaving the key in the car) then they will ask that you pay for a new battery. If it's a problem with a faulty Comfort Access door handle thats preventing the car from going into "sleep mode" then they probably would have covered the battery under warranty or at least recharged it for free.
 

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The previous generation 5 had battery problems too, particularly those with Comfort Access. Some dealers replaced their battery under warranty and others did not. I guess it just depends on the dealer.

I think if they can find a reason that it is the owners fault (short trips or leaving the key in the car) then they will ask that you pay for a new battery. If it's a problem with a faulty Comfort Access door handle thats preventing the car from going into "sleep mode" then they probably would have covered the battery under warranty or at least recharged it for free.
Hope this is a problem with comfort access FOBs only.
 

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Battery is well under warranty. BMW replaced new battery for my previous 3yr old 530i at 48000 Mile Free of Charge! Also on the TV ad, BMW stated $0 for everything except Gas and Tire. You might want to see service manger instead of service advisers. Thanks
 

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My battery failed the second day I owned the car. It took BMW 3 days to decide to replace the battery. I've had it for 6 months now with no recurring problem. (535i)
 

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A friend of mine told me about this in an x5 and Manhattan BMW wanted 700 for the battery. He said they allegedly told him it's common in Manhattan because of the garages and how many times they start the car and move it around the garages. I was surpirsed...

Now low and behold, my 535xi with less than 4000 miles is displaying the following:



Called my Rep today but he's on vacation til Monday so I will let you know how it all turns out.
 

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There is no way in you know where that I would tolerate them not covering the battery. Short trips or whatever reason they give. If the car can't handle short trips it's a design error. I'd go straight to the service manager and I would have the BMWNA customer service number on my cell phone queued up and ready. Of all the little issues on the board this is the one that I dread the most and the only one likely to make be take the nuclear option
 

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I got the battery changed after 6 months, has also been replaced a soft close lock, 4 steel wires in the doors, remodeling of Webasto, changed the battery in 2 personal key's replaced battery in remote control for entertainment system for rear seat! I got my car 6 july, it's a 525da F10.... All this for free! :)
 

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Re my post above (#7), Manhattan BMW replaced my battery without any any question. They claim that it was a known software issue.
 

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Re my post above (#7), Manhattan BMW replaced my battery without any any question. They claim that it was a known software issue.
Interesting. I wonder if there is a software fix available or in what point they fixed it in production.

-Zathris
 

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Mine is 535i and the battery is replaced 3 months after I got the car brand new. The dealer just told me that it was just a bad battery and they replaced it with a new one. No further explanation.

Sent from my Nexus One using Bimmer App
 

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Interesting. My car actualy sports two batteries. I was told this was needed due to the self park feature. I wonder how that might change the battery dynamic.

I've thought about putting a battery tender into the car to top it off over the weekend. Anyone have any thoughts on that solution? I'd imagine it would prolong the life of the battery or batteries.

-Zathris
 

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...Just a quick note on my 535ix. I've checked all the power outlets (cigarette lighters) including the one in the passenger footwell under the glove compartment and trunk. They all power down in about 10 minutes after the car is turned off. As far as I can tell, a tickle charger would need to be attached to either the jumper terminals in the engine compartment, or a power tap that would need to be installed at the battery itself.
 

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The BMW battery tender attaches to the under-hood terminals. I use one on my M3, which sat in the garage, unstarted, from 12/1/10 to 4/1/11. Tender works like a charm - started right up after its 6 month "nap" with no drama whatsoever.

The BMW tender is reasonably priced with your BMWCCA discount. You can find a cheaper tender without the Roundel on it, but I am more comfortable using a BMW part - presumably, it gives them less "wiggle room" to deny a claim if my battery dies or the tender fries an electronic module. If I had a Brand X tender connected for 6 months, I am sure that BMWUSA would tell me to take a hike.
 

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My battery failed too after one year, 9950 miles - same as Shua22 in his post below. Same screen message. Mine is at the dealer today. I will report the result tomorrow.
 

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535i M-Sport ED May 2011
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Interesting. My car actualy sports two batteries. I was told this was needed due to the self park feature. I wonder how that might change the battery dynamic.
-Zathris
Maybe, but RealOem.com says the second battery is in cars with Integral Active Steering (Option S2VHA). Which I have on my 535i.

Not sure what it is for unless it has something to do with the rear wheel steering on these cars.
 

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This is nuts! I sure hope this doesn't happen to me. I've never had a car before that drained its battery in so many creative ways or that needed a battery tender if you aren't driving the car the way you "should be".
What next?
 

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A big surprise - yes. I have not been able to confirm this from BMW yet, but .... I have heard that the new 2011 F10 bmw efficiency dynamics that gets us a few extra mpg comes at a price - early death of the battery. This might be akin to, but not identical to (i.e., smaller scale) the trade-off in a hybrid, getting better miles per gallon, but with added electrical cost.

This does not deter us BMW faithful, but I think BMW corporate should have just told us up front about this trade-off, rather than being surprised.
 

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I am on my third battery. They are completely covered by warranty, I would get really PO'd if my dealer tried charging for one.

I for one think the "efficient dynamics" alternator is one horrible idea. It eats batteries like nothing else (and batteries just happen to be one of the greatest ecological nightmares to deal with) and does not contribute to better gas mileage in my experience. The mileage on my car lower than I expected. My S550 which was almost 5000lbs and had a 5.5L V8 regularly got 1.5-2mpg better mileage than this car. Frankly I can't stand how the car slows down so quickly when you take your foot off the gas- the car does not coast, I wonder if the alternator actually costs MPG....
 
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