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I only just bought my 325, but batteries in general should last about 4 years if you don't run them into the ground by leaving the lights on or something like that. Once run down to a low charge state they are damaged, and everytime they are discharged that way they are damaged a little more - they are not designed to take a deep discharge (below 50-60% charge).

Some batteries will only take one or two of those kinds of discharges, others may take four or five, but it really cuts down on the life of the battery - I had one battery (brand new) go dead in a motorcycle after one deep discharge (alternator went bad in the middle of nowhere on a trip). The smaller the battery, the less abuse it can take.
 

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About 4 years. I've heard that if you let it run down a lot (by not driving it) it can go bad quicker. But if you bought the car new, the battery is covered by warranty!
 

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Donkeybike?
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3,680 Posts
Week 16 production of 2000 (105K miles) and still using the original battery. :D Then again, I know how to not destroy it. :angel:
 

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I have the original battery with a build date of 11/99 (5 1/2 years) going strong. I fill the cells every year and do an overnight 2-3A charge every few months.

Steve D
 

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BMW + twisty road = fun
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5,886 Posts
Still have my original battery in the 2001.
I plan on replacing the battery in October before winter hits just to be safe.
 

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King of Rear Clunks
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Been 4 years now and still going strong, even with occasional abuse, like on Sunday when I left the heater running for quite a while when changing coolant.
 

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I live in Fort Myers Fl. and I"ve had several batteries go bad. They seem to last around 3 years max and they go without warning. When I lived in Pa. it seemed to be that the battery would go bad gradually, not all at once like it is here. The last time one went, I had the car turned off for about 30 seconds!

The manual says if you don't put enough highway miles on the car, the battery won't have enough time to charge itself.
 

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zentenn said:
I live in Fort Myers Fl. and I"ve had several batteries go bad. They seem to last around 3 years max and they go without warning. When I lived in Pa. it seemed to be that the battery would go bad gradually, not all at once like it is here. The last time one went, I had the car turned off for about 30 seconds!

The manual says if you don't put enough highway miles on the car, the battery won't have enough time to charge itself.
Hey! I'm in Cape Coral :hi:
 

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A mere 24 months for me. Then again the IHKA bug that completely discharged my battery 3 times probably didn't help too much.
 

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The battery in my M3 is going right now.

The 323i seems to be just fine, but I don't know if it was ever repalced.
 

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Using SPF 45
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magbarn said:
A mere 24 months for me. Then again the IHKA bug that completely discharged my battery 3 times probably didn't help too much.
About a year for me. I think that caused the problem, at least in part, although not driving it much (<2000/year) didn't help.
 

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I had a 2000 328i and a 2003 330i and the battery in both lasted right at two years. The heat here just kills batteries.
 

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I see alot of the '99 guys chiming in with long battery lives. BMW OEM batteries had a really good rep with the E36 series. Alot of the guys were getting 6+ yrs out of their batteries. I believe the 99-00 model years used similar low-maintenance batteries that allowed you to pop off the caps and refill the distilled water. The newer oem batteries are all the maintenance free sealed crap that has the caps glued. So when the electrolyte dries up you're SOL.
 

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This Guy
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Well damn, it sounds like my battery is the Keith Richards of the bunch. My '98 is still using the original (7-98) battery and going strong. When I lived in Georgia, one of my friends had a '99 V-6 Mustang with the original battery in it. He hasn't replaced it as of Tuesday! No secret that I know of to the long life on either battery. :dunno:
 
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