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I bought a used 2003 X5 a couple of months ago. It came with two keys -- the one I've been using and an "extra" in a fancy key case. I read that the battery in the key fob recharges while you drive and that any extra keys should be used periodically to re-charge the fob.

I didn't do anything with the extra for the first couple of months (not really driving anywhere with all of the lockdowns -- so barely using main key). Now, I decided I better see about making sure the extra key has a charge. It is currently dead. I have driven with it twice now (maybe only a hour or two total) and it is still dead.

Does anyone know how long it should take to re-charge a key? I don't know if it was already dead when I received it since I never tried to use it. Could it be totally dead and not coming back or am I just being impatient? If it is dead, is there a way to fix it?

Thanks.
 

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Often when you have the symptoms described the problem is she key 2 is not paired with the car. You can test for radio output at a hardware store that sells remote batteries, they often have a sensor that will light up when it detects the remote transmission.
Also, if you find my key repair thread on xoutpost, I show how to measure the battery voltage with some needles through the button rubber joint.
 

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Does anyone know how long it should take to re-charge a key? I don't know if it was already dead when I received it since I never tried to use it. Could it be totally dead and not coming back or am I just being impatient? If it is dead, is there a way to fix it?

Thanks.
It can take up to 30 hours to recharge a fully discharged remote key. If you have a battery charger or a battery tender/maintainer...you can hook it up to the dedicated negative and positive jump start terminals in the engine bay...turn the ignition to position 1...and leave the key in this position over night. As long as the battery charger/maintainer/tender is hooked up to the correct jump terminals in the engine bay...the car's battery will not run down and the key inside the remote will get charged up.

As mentioned in the post above...try reinitialize game BOTH of your remote keys. If you only initialized one remote...any remote you have that's not programmed during the same session will no longer have the correct rolling code table and won't be recognized for lock/unlock & arm/disarm of the alarm siren system by the GM (general module). See the instructions below on how to reinitialize remote keys. Make sure you follow EVERY instruction or programming will fail. This includes the instructions on all doors must be closed and UNLOCKED prior to beginning...and KL R means ignition position 1 (Not position 2 or engine running):



{take note of the 3rd bullet in pic below}


 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you andrewwynn and QSilver7! Programming the two keys at the same time fixed it.
 

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