Battery Life - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 7 Old Jul 11th, 2008, 10:33 am Thread Starter
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Battery Life

I think its time to change the battery in my 05 LT. I have had the battery drain down when I was away for 3 weeks but I have not had other problems with it. This week I was able to ride every day to work except today. Yesterday when going to work the radio did not sound right and I had some noise on the AM radio. I thought I might be having an alternator problem but all seemed to work fine on the way home. When I went to start it today the needles did not swing full travel on the tach and speedometer like they normally do and the bike would not start. I charged the battery and started the bike just now. I am getting 13.7 volts with the bike running so I feel the charging system is working but I feel the battery is due. I believe this is the original battery. I have ridden the bike over 10 hours this week so the battery should have had a full charge. I checked to see if there was anything on or any thing else that could have caused the drain and the switch was in the first off position (steering not locked) and the radio was off. I do put the bike on the centerstand before shutting the bike off and the cooling fan was not running when I parked. Daytona has the battery in stock and I was planning to go that way tomorrow. I did not expect the price to be over $170.

Does this time frame sound right for battery change? I have read about other batteries that are cheaper but are they worth it?

Dave

Dave Fuchs
2005 K1200LT
2001 R1200C (wife's)
1985 KLR 250
2002 John Deere 4110
1946 Piper J-3
IBA# 42191
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post #2 of 7 Old Jul 11th, 2008, 11:18 am
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Re: Battery Life

That sounds a bit quick to me. If the battery has gone dead a few times that's not good from my experience, and will shorten the life. I use a battery tender, there are a bunch out there, and plug my LT in anytime I'm not going to be riding for more then two days. I've had a battery last 5 years doing that.

I did a quick search on the web and the first place I looked had a battery for your LT starting at $69 and going up to $131.

http://www.batterystuff.com/

When you get a new battery get a good battery tender, one that has the smart charger feature, and just plug it in when you're not going to be riding for a few days, or just plug it in once or twice a week to make sure it stays fully charged. Shouldn't hurt it if you have the right charger.

Bob Brendel
05 LT, Light Metallic Yellow
99 LT, Totaled 3/09
97 HD Former Work Bike
88 GL1500
84 GL1200
S3 400 Kaw, too long ago to remember the year
175 Yamaha even longer

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post #3 of 7 Old Jul 11th, 2008, 11:29 am
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Re: Battery Life

I had a BMW battery replaced on the 99 LT by the previous owner in May 06. The battery died on me two weeks ago on the road, totally unexpected. The dealer wanted $154. I ended up buying one on line for $88 from www.BatteriesASAP.com
Got the LC-X1220P Panasonic

The terminals were mounted a bit different, had to drill out the holes, insert the bolts from a different direction. Did not expect all the mods, but it saved a lot of money I did not have to waste, and exceeded the specs on the BMW battery.

I figured if a 2 yr old BMW battery failed already, made no sense wasting extra money to ensure a new would be any better.

Local dealer stated battery life has been seen anywhere from 1-8 yrs, no reason why one lasts and another did not.
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post #4 of 7 Old Jul 11th, 2008, 10:11 pm
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Re: Battery Life

Go to Beemerboneyard.Com and buy a Wesco AGM battery, Get a Battery Tender for $35. And plug in your battery to the charger via the accessory socket on the driverside left footpeg area anytime you park it.

The Battery Tender will charge the battery to capacity, if needed, then put a float charge on it. It will maintain your battery for years this way. Sometimes many many years. And that's the way to add logevity to your motorcycle battery.

2006 Magnesium Black Metallic K1200LT (sold - sigh)
1996 Sinus (aka Cirrus) Blue Metallic R1100RT
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post #5 of 7 Old Jul 12th, 2008, 2:24 am
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Re: Battery Life

To me, the BMW battery seems kind of weak for what it is asked to do. 19 ah and low CCA. When I bought my bike the P.O. said he replaced the battery the year before (BMW Exide battery). I used a battery tender on it every day when it wasn't being ridden. After a year I got the tell tale ABS fail lights. I ordered a new battery on line that is 22ah and 475 CCA. With the BMW battery the starter sounded weak, even when coming off the tender. The new battery cranks it right over without any hesitation, and the engine fires off right away. Just 2 years out of a battery is pathetic, especially when you see the price of the BMW battery.
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post #6 of 7 Old Jul 22nd, 2008, 1:03 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Battery Life

I finally got a chance to pull the battery out of the LT and the install date under the plate of the current battery is 6/04. I placed it on the charger and it seems that the problem is with the battery . I was afraid the problem was with the bike. I rode the wife's bike (R1200C) over the weekend but she is now due for tires. I know some are against the BMW batteries but I feel a 4 year life is acceptable. If i can find one under $150 that is the way I will go. If not I will go with the off brand. I guess this shouldn't be an issue since my '03 Ford and '04 Toyota both have had their batteries replaced. If the bikes sit for more than a week then I think I will get a trickle charger for them but I feel that the milage we put on them is adequate and I perfer that I have a failure at home than on the road.

Dave Fuchs
2005 K1200LT
2001 R1200C (wife's)
1985 KLR 250
2002 John Deere 4110
1946 Piper J-3
IBA# 42191
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post #7 of 7 Old Jul 22nd, 2008, 4:37 pm
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Re: Battery Life

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailwheel
I finally got a chance to pull the battery out of the LT and the install date under the plate of the current battery is 6/04. I placed it on the charger and it seems that the problem is with the battery . I was afraid the problem was with the bike. I rode the wife's bike (R1200C) over the weekend but she is now due for tires. I know some are against the BMW batteries but I feel a 4 year life is acceptable. If i can find one under $150 that is the way I will go. If not I will go with the off brand. I guess this shouldn't be an issue since my '03 Ford and '04 Toyota both have had their batteries replaced. If the bikes sit for more than a week then I think I will get a trickle charger for them but I feel that the milage we put on them is adequate and I perfer that I have a failure at home than on the road.
Any battery will benefit from a stepped trickle charger. Charger manufacturers, as well as battery manufacturers, will tell you that keeping a battery fully charged during it's 'down' time will greatly add to the battery's lifespan. Letting it go thru the up/down cycles will adversely affect it's life. Gel and AGM type batteries are also keen on being fully charged all the time, butt are more forgiveable when not kept on a charger - mainly due to their slow discharge rate, given that a parasitic draw is minimal on the vehicle in which they're installed.

BTW - this info is scattered around this community, so this post is nothing new --- just thought I'd mention it again for the folks with recent BMW scoot acquisitions; and those in the hunt for replacing batteries.
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