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BMW E39 Battery Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

BMW E39 Battery Replacement

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$100

Talent:

***

Tools:

Set of sockets (10mm, 13mm), flathead screwdriver.

Applicable Models:

BMW 525i Sedan/Wagon (2001-03)
BMW 528i Sedan/Wagon (1997-00)
BMW 530i Sedan (2001-03)
BMW 540i Sedan/Wagon (1997-03)

Parts Required:

Battery, battery vent hose

Hot Tip:

Wear eye and hand protection.

Performance Gain:

Car will start well.

Complementary Modification:

Replace battery vent hose
Replacing the battery can be done in a short amount of time. When replacing your battery, be sure to use a high quality unit. Read battery connection notes before disconnecting battery. Be sure to protect yourself from battery acid, as it can spill during removal. Before disconnecting your battery, remove key from vehicle and store in a safe place and note radio presets. When battery is reconnected or loses its charge, the following items may need attention (depending on vehicle equipment). You may have to reset your clock, enter radio presets, initialize power windows, initialize the sunroof and normalize the steering angle sensor.
The battery in BMW E39 models is located in the right side of trunk, behind a trim panel.
Figure 1

The battery in BMW E39 models is located in the right side of trunk, behind a trim panel. (green arrow) 

Charging battery: You can connect a battery charger directly to the battery or under the hood at the positive (+) and negative (-) grounding point junction. However, I suggest removing battery from vehicle when charging. This will avoid filling your trunk with gas that the battery emits during charging. Follow the manufacturer's instructions on setting and using the battery charger.
If you have a 6-cylinder model, the battery junctions are located at right front strut tower and the rear of the intake manifold, green arrow points to positive, yellow points to negative.
Figure 2

If you have a 6-cylinder model, the battery junctions are located at right front strut tower and the rear of the intake manifold, green arrow points to positive, yellow points to negative.

If you have an 8-cylinder model, the battery junctions are located at right front strut tower and the left front valve cover, green arrow points to positive, yellow points to negative.
Figure 3

If you have an 8-cylinder model, the battery junctions are located at right front strut tower and the left front valve cover, green arrow points to positive, yellow points to negative.

Jump Starting vehicle: A vehicle with a discharged battery can be jump started using a good battery or a good battery in another vehicle. When jump starting: Be sure to work in a well ventilated area, batteries can produce an explosive gas. Wear gloves and eye protection and if battery acid comes in contact with your skin, immediately flush with water and seek medical assistance. Move both vehicles close together but do not allow them to touch. Turn ignition OFF in both vehicles. Connect one end of positive jumper cable to positive (+) battery terminal of vehicle with good battery. Connect other end of positive jumper cable to positive (+) junction terminal vehicle with discharged battery. You will have to flip open lid on positive (+) junction connection. Connect one end of negative (-) cable to negative (-) battery terminal of vehicle with good battery. Connect other end of negative (-) jumper cable to negative (-) junction terminal of vehicle with discharged battery. Start engine on vehicle with a good battery. Allow to idle, then raise engine to 2000 RPM. Next, start engine of vehicle with discharged battery. Once vehicle with discharged vehicle starts, shut OFF any electrical accessories, radio, HVAC blower, etc. Carefully disconnect jumper cable in the reverse order you connected them in. Allow vehicle with dead battery to idle to recharge the battery. 
Replacing battery:
Working in trunk, pull trim panel handle to open.
Figure 4

Working in trunk, pull trim panel handle to open.

Using a 10mm socket, loosen and remove battery hold down.
Figure 5

Using a 10mm socket, loosen and remove battery hold down. (green arrow) Then disconnect battery vent hose at center of battery. Next remove two 13mm fasteners (yellow arrows) for battery bracket, then remove bracket.

Using a ratchet and a 10mm socket or a 13mm open end wrench (depending on your vehicles equipment, later models came equipped with 10mm terminal fasteners, early models with 13mm), disconnect negative (-) battery cable.
Figure 6

Using a ratchet and a 10mm socket or a 13mm open end wrench (depending on your vehicles equipment, later models came equipped with 10mm terminal fasteners, early models with 13mm), disconnect negative (-) battery cable. (green arrow) Move negative (-) cable aside and cover so it does not accidentally come in contact with battery terminal. Release locking clips and open battery safety terminal cover. (yellow arrow) There are two plastic locks on each side of lid you have to release.

Then using a ratchet and a 10mm socket or a 13mm open end wrench (depending on your vehicles equipment, later models came equipped with 10mm terminal fasteners, early models with 13mm), loosen positive (+) battery cable.
Figure 7

Then using a ratchet and a 10mm socket or a 13mm open end wrench (depending on your vehicles equipment, later models came equipped with 10mm terminal fasteners, early models with 13mm), loosen positive (+) battery cable. (green arrow) Lift positive (+) battery cable off battery and lay aside.

Lift battery up and remove from trunk.
Figure 8

Lift battery up and remove from trunk. Be careful and make sure you have a good grip, the battery is quite heavy. You will have to move cables around and keep them out of the way as you remove battery from vehicle. Clean battery compartment thoroughly. Clean corrosion from battery cable ends if present. Before installing new battery, check that battery vent line is not pinched, in good condition and is properly routed. Replace if needed. Install battery in compartment, attach vent line. Connect positive (+) cable. Next connect negative (-) cable. Install battery hold down bracket. Then close trim cover.

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Comments and Suggestions:
ronaldo Comments: how do i register a battery on my 97 bmw 528i wagon...what are the codes and steps to do it.
October 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You don't have to on E39 models. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
86BlackWidow Comments: Is it necessary to register a new battery when replacing the old battery in a 2001 E39 540i
August 30, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No it is not. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Scott Comments: Do I need a code or need to register a new battery when replacing an old flat battery on a 2003 BMW E39 530i?
February 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Rob V Comments: The pics posted in figure 5 and figure 6 are of two different batteries. My battery looks like fig 5 and i cant figure out how to loosen the cables. Can you please address this?
January 22, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Loosen the 10mm nuts on the terminals, then lift the cables off. As described in the image.

{Using a 10mm socket, loosen and remove battery hold down. (green arrow) Then disconnect battery vent hose at center of battery. Next remove two 13mm fasteners (yellow arrows) for battery bracket, then remove bracket.}- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Amrathe Comments: To follow up on the previous question, I have three vehicles. 2001 E53 X5 w/M54; 2001 E46 330xi w/M54; and E39 525i w/M54. If my battery light is on still after battery replacement and replacing alternator, is it a possible chassis ground issue or is the battery and/or alternator need to be registered/re-programmed?
December 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It won't be a programming issue. It could be a wiring issue. You can start by voltage drop testing the battery cables. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Charles Comments: Is there no need to register a new battery like in the E60 models?
October 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What type of vehicle? Most late BMWs require battery registration. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Sat 12/3/2016 02:04:58 AM