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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Sorry, I know this topic has been discussed before by users, but I still have problem understanding it even after researching in many sites. I apologize if I sound too ignorant and also for this very lengthy thread.

I have a brand new 328i in March. I live in Buckhead, Atlanta. So I do basically almost everything within the buckhead area.

Around mid October, I first received a "High Battery Discharge"warning message. But it went away within a minute after I turned on the ignition.

On November 1, I was at my dental office for over 2 hours. I got into the car, drove to pick up some shipping supplies down the street. Got back into the car about 5 mins later, halfway to the mall, my mom called and I talked to her via bluetooth.

Parked the car, cut off engine and still talking to my mom. Whole conversation is about 30minutes. I know. After I hung up the phone, the "High Battery Discharge" warning came up again. I turned off the power.

Went to the mall to pick up a few items, went back to the car. The "Battery Charged Level Low" came up when I turned the power on. This was the first time I saw that and I was worried. I connected to the BMW Assist and the lady insisted I should send my car for a checkup. She connected me to the nearest service center at Global Imports. I got an appointment on Nov 5. The warning signs did not show up after that.

On November 5, the SA told me I have too few miles in the car, and likely due to my driving short distances. I looked at the diagnostics, it said
"#1 Cause was Terminal 15 was on.
#2 was unfavorable driving patterms" Battery at 53%

The technician came and explained I should really take my car to go far away places. He has suggested a trickle charger but since I live in a condominium, that won't work. Everyone zoomed in on my "unfavorable driving pattern". He also said the battery will not be under warranty if it dies.

So I have since tried to take the car to far places once a week. Honestly, this is stressful cos I have to purposely go somewhere far to get the battery charged.

One month later, today I received another "High Battery Discharge". Not sure if it was due to my stopping at the gas station to fill up the gas and again like 10minutes later. When I got back into the car after leaving the car for 10minutes, I received the "High Battery discharge" warning. The warning did not go away. After my one hour meeting at Starbucks, I did not see anymore of the "High Battery Discharge" warning for the rest of the day.

I am wondering instead of going to highway when the traffic is just as bad as the city roads, can I just drive around the city to get the battery charged. If yes, how long should I drive to get the batt charged. Would anyone be kind to tell me if this (driving short distances) is the only reason causing it. I also have a theory, could it be because I keep cutting off the engine at within sort period of time interval. I used to have a MB, and I never have such problem :(

Would appreciate if anyone can advise on this. Thank you!:cry:
 

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Get a maintenance charger, and just charge it whenever you can (visiting mom, friend w/ garage, anything).

When you get out of your car, lock immediately to put the car to sleep.

You can save a bit here and there by not using DRLs, radio, the vert top, no more BT talking, etc. If and when you must, only when the car is running.

FWIW, I don't really use DRLs, barely use the radio, don't have integrated BT, don't have a vert, immediately lock my doors, and even roll the car out *unstarted* in neutral to wash it. Yet, my first charge took 24 hours. Which leads me to believe that you will need a lot lot lot lot lot of city driving *on one start* to get it up to charge.

Is it possible to remove the battery to have a shop charge it for you, and go from there? (I honestly don't know if it's cool to just remove it with our cars w/o adversely affecting the OBC and stuff . . . I think I recently read it's no problem on the E46?).
 

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at your condo, do you park in front of your unit? is there power available to the car? i know you ruled out a battery tender but it will solve all your issues and you wont feel pressured to drive the car distances... CTEK 3300 battery maintainers are water proof. If you could get power out to the car you just hook it up to the hood terminals, shut the hood and leave it outside, the unit is sealed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ilovemycar: Hi thanks for your reply. Sorry, what is DRL? I don't use the radio, even though I have satellite radio. I only play music from my iphone when I drive. Does that count? It's cold here in Atlanta now, so no more top down for me. I lock my car immediately when I leave the car. So no problem like some users with the car and remote being in near distance. My car parks on the deck. I live in a high rise. I may have to learn about the maintenance charger thingy. But feels so bad to impose on my friends. My mom lives in the other side of the world. I have no relatives here. Do you think there is anywhere that I can pay them to charge my battery? OBC? Sorry I have alot of learning to do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
B737: hello, thanks for replying. I live on the 9th floor, my car is on the 5th level. There is no power available anywhere in the deck :( If there is one, I would have taken the option of getting a charger, put a chair next to my car and just patiently wait :( So Ilovemycar said his/her car took 24 hours to charge, so the technician's suggestion of taking the car to far away places on weekends may not help too.
 

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DRL = Daytime running lights

DRL = Daytime running lights
This is like having a plug in hybrid without the electric motor.
It probably would be enough to put on the triclkle charger one or
two time a week overnight.
The battery charges better on the highway because of the higher rpms.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
ctuna: oh okay :) DRL=daytime running lights
I supposed I have that? My lights on Auto. So the daytime running lights will be on? What do you mean by "This is like having a plug in hybrid without the electric motor." I apologize, I am really slow here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
ctuna: sorry I didn't see your advice on the charger and highway. Charger doesn't seem to be an option for me cos I live in a highrise. I guess you are right, I will just have to burn some gas and wander aimlessly in the highways :) Thanks for replying :)
 

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I mean this thing sucks electricty

Even when its sitting around going nowhere. Yet does not make your car go
any further down the road. You have to put it on a charger just to make
sure it will still start. Its a joke. Wondering down the highways is a very expensive
way to keep your battery charged these days, the car should get some exercise though.

Turning off the automatic lights might help some.
I have them but I don't turn them on after a lifetime of doing it the old fashioned way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
ctuna: let me tell u a personal joke. When I took my driving test, the examiner said turn on the lights. I like turn what? I never know how to turn on the headlights cos the car lights turn on itself everytime I start the car. Obviously the examiner was not too happy.

I really appreciate you and everyone's advice here :)
 

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In reading these posts, I have concluded using a trickle charger is the answer to preventing terri's situation - i.e. the battery discharge warnings. Although I've used a trickle charger during the times I was away for extended periods of time, I havent used it when I've driven the car as I 'normally do - on a Saturday or Sunday for about 25 miles. I now feel I should use the charger between drives - am I correct? And most importantly, will using it prevent premature battery death? I just plugged it in!
Thanks for any input.
 

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http://www.amazon.com/Sunforce-50022-Battery-Trickle-Charger/dp/B0006JO0TC

I think it might help but do you think it would be enough?
This one goes to the cigagette lighter and I notice even the BMW approved one does to .
If you could get one that doubles as a window shade that would be better.
I wouldn't use the lighter socket as most of them are switch power, at least they are on mine X5 but not sure about mine 328i. Better to connect at the back of the battery like the one you referred to (but only ~400mA). You can parallel panels to increase your charge rate but the panels need circuitry to protect from overcharging the battery.
 

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A lot of the maintener are around an amp

so about 3 of these would = one of those if the sun was shinning at a optimum value.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hi all, I am totally lost here.
 

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It's very simple, really.
1. Buy this http://amzn.com/B00068XCQU

2. Plug it in your battery ( red clipper to red outlet on the car battery and negative clipper to screw close by.

3. Find a place to plug in the item 1 above to power outlet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hi all, I have taken a look at the amazon's link, it's a solar panel. I read can be connected directly to battery or cigarette lighter plug. Hmmm I don't think there is one in my car.

Just wondering if there is anything that can be used n charged at home and then in turn bring to the car & charge the car battery.
 
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