BMW Battery Replacement and Registration

Bianka Rommel
May 5, 2020

BMW battery replacement

You love your BMW, don’t you? And you want to keep driving it as long as you can, right? There are few things your BMW will require of you to maintain its longevity then — changing your oil, replacing air filters and other general service tasks. But one thing that does the most to ensure your car will run smoothly is taking care of your BMW’s battery. 

Many people wonder though, whether BMW battery replacement  and registration is a simple DIY process or has to be done by an expert technician. We say: you can definitely handle the replacement on your own! However, when it comes to the registration — if you’re not a tech-savvy person, let us do the work for you. 

Here, we’ll explain how to put a battery in a car, take an in-depth look into BMW battery registration and tell you more about the BMW battery reset procedure

BMW battery replacement

What battery do I need?

Conventional wisdom when it comes to choosing your new battery goes that the perfect replacement battery would be the one with very similar specifications to your old battery. Hence, it should be of a similar type and capacity.

However!

Our registration process frees you from that necessity. BimmerTech specialists offer a coding process to adjust your vehicle to the new battery specifications. You’ll hear more about it later in the article.

Liquid Lead Acid vs. GEL vs. AGM Battery 

Those who prepare for a battery replacement often ask: How do I know if my battery is AGM or GEL or Liquid Lead Acid?  

It’s vital to know which type you are using, as each of them needs to be handled differently. Making a mistake may lead to shortening battery’s life or harming the driver. 

Liquid Lead Acid batteries 

So to get things straight, Liquid Lead Acid batteries have so called flooded or wet cells — the regular and most popular lead acid battery type. You can identify them by the caps on the top which you can open to fill the battery with distilled water.  

GEL Lead-Acid batteries

GEL Lead-Acid batteries are on the other hand dry-cell batteries, as they contain an electrolyte in the form of a gel. Plus, they are fully sealed and have noticeable flat tops with no signs of caps or filling ports on them. How to see the difference between a wet-cell battery and a gel battery? You can either check the label or shake the battery. If it’s wet, it’ll continue to move around inside after you stop shaking. If it’s gel-filled it will stop.

Absorbed Glass Matt (AGM) batteries

Absorbed Glass Matt (AGM) batteries are also lead-acid dry-cell batteries. They consist of glass fibers creating a mesh inside the battery, which is why they are considered to be safer than liquid ones; if the casing gets damaged, the acid can’t leak out of the battery. They are fully sealed and don’t need to be topped off or maintained in any other way. It may be tricky to differentiate AGMs from GEL ones, so the best way to tell what kind of battery you have is to look it up online by the model number.

BMW battery replacement procedure

If you didn’t already replace the battery in your BMW and don’t know how to put a battery in a car here is a fast way to do it. The procedure of battery replacement can be divided into 9 steps:

  1. First turn the ignition off and remove your key. Then locate your battery. Where is the battery in a BMW? You will usually find it inside your trunk — either on the trunk floor or on the right side of the trunk.
    Found it? Remove the liner which covers the battery. 
  2. Now, disconnect the negative battery terminal with a 10mm wrench and put the cable away.
  3. Next you'll need to disconnect the positive battery terminal and remove the cable. To do it properly, lift up the red plastic cover and find a 10mm nut — you need to loosen it up.
  4. Now is the time to get rid of the brackets. The battery is held by 2 brackets — one on the side and the second on top. You’ll want to remove the latter first by taking off two 13mm bolts.
  5. Remove the battery from the trunk but keep in mind — it might be quite heavy.
  6. Before you install your new battery make sure to take pictures of the battery’s model number and technical data. It’ll be vital information for BimmerTech technician conducting your battery registration process.
  7. You can now install your new battery by carefully laying it in the place of the old one. Just make sure it is set properly.
  8. Vital step! Properly secure the battery. To do it, you’ll have to reinstall the brackets, keeping in mind not to over tighten them. Otherwise you can crack the battery housing. If you’re installing a Liquid Lead-Acid battery, connect it to the vent house, as it’ll prevent the gasses from the vent house from building up inside your trunk.
  9. Lastly, clean the battery posts with a battery terminal brush and connect the battery terminals — first connect the positive battery terminal, secondly the negative terminal.

NOTE: Before you even start replacing or registering your battery, purchase our service of Battery Registration and set a preferable date in which you could replace the battery and register it at the same time. Battery registration is a must after each battery change and has to be handled right after battery replacement, so make sure you’ll be able to do it all in one day. 

BMW battery registration 

What is BMW battery registration and coding

Before we dig into the process of battery registration, let’s focus on what BMW battery registration actually is. To put it simply, battery registration is a process of updating your vehicle with information that a brand new battery has been installed in your car. What's important, it should be performed each time you change the battery in your 2002 or newer BMW. 

As your battery gets on in years and gradually loses its charging capacity, the vehicle adjusts the amount of energy needed to recharge to operate at optimal levels. The older the battery the more charging it requires. Registering your battery lets your engine control module (known as DME — Digital Motor Electronics) know that a new one is installed and as a result, the vehicle will reset the old battery statistics and won’t try to overcharge the new battery thinking the previous one is still inserted.

Apart from the registration procedure, you also have to code your BMW computer. It’ll be necessary each time you replace your battery, no matter its specifications - whether your battery is similar or extremely different from your old one.

Why is battery registration important on BMW

The electrical system of BMW models manufactured after 2002 got very sophisticated, as it started to adjust charging to the age as well as the type of the battery. If you’re changing your BMW battery for a new one having different capacity or type, your DME has to be updated with this info. It happens for example when you’re switching between batteries with lower and higher cranking ampere ratings or swapping a Liquid Lead Acid battery for an AGM battery.

Registration is required so that your car knows about the changed specifications and can adjust to the new battery settings. Otherwise, if you don’t properly reprogram your battery, it could result in many electrical problems; you could overcharge or undercharge your battery, or in the worst case scenario, cause considerable damage to your vehicle’s alternator and electrical system — at this point your battery may fail prematurely. 

Which BMW models require battery registration?

All BMW models manufactured after 2002 require battery registration, as they are significantly more advanced in terms of electrical environment, which aims to improve the gas mileage.  Models developed since 2002 are equipped with the system of Intelligent Battery Sensors (IBS) that contains micro processors monitoring and measuring charge, discharge, voltage, current and battery temperature. 

To confirm whether your vehicle requires battery registration Contact us.

What is the cost of battery registration in car shops?

When going to the car shop to replace your old battery with a new original BMW battery, the costs may turn out to be higher than you’d expected. The registration of the battery itself costs around $200. 

BimmerTech on the other hand offers much cheaper battery registration service. To know the exact price of the service combined with the price for coding cable hop over to our coding website.   

BimmerTech’s BMW battery registration procedure 

How to prepare for battery registration

  1. Before you even start replacing or registering your battery, purchase our service of Battery Registration and set a preferable date in which you could replace the battery and register it at the same time. Battery registration has to be handled right after battery replacement, so make sure you’ll be able to do it all in one day. 
  2. After you purchase our service of Battery Registration schedule a remote coding session with a BimmerTech technician.
  3. Remember to take pictures of the battery’s model number and technical data before you install it in your car. It’s vital information for BimmerTech technician while registration process.

 Battery registration procedure

The battery registration procedure conducted with the help of our BimmerTech technician is very easy and will take you no more than 15 minutes. Our expert will guide you through it step by step. So, here’s what you should do:

  1. Led by our battery installation process, make sure you’ve properly installed a new battery in your trunk and prepare for a remote BMW battery registration.
  2. When you’re ready to start your coding session make sure you have Wi-Fi access and begin a chat with your BimmerTech technician.
     


  3. Locate the OBD2 port under the driver's side dashboard. When the technician tells you to do so, connect the OBD port via BimmerTech’s coding cable to your laptop  with an Ethernet port or external USB-RJ45 adapter — these are necessary BMW battery registration tools.
    To figure out whether you’re going to use the USB on your laptop or an Ethernet port, you'll need to know your vehicle's model code.
    For the cars with ‘E’ model code  (e.g. E90, E60 etc.) you’ll need a USB adapter. If you have a vehicle with ‘G’ (e.g. G11, G30, etc.) or ‘F’ (e.g. F30, F10, etc.) model code, the Ethernet port would be the right one for you.
    coding cable for BMW

  4. At that point, the BimmerTech technician is going to proceed with the battery registration process.

And there you have it :)

At BimmerTech we always maintain that each of our customers deserves the best quality help. So, if you need any more instructions concerning the registration of your car battery, please get in touch with our team

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