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  #1  
Old 01-30-2015, 10:11 PM
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Car won't start or crank... battery?

Hi guys,

My car is an X5 E70 3.0 diesel to begin with. It won't start or crank. The ignition turns on, all the lights etc work. but all I hear is a clicking sound when trying to start it.

Now here's the story.

Two days ago, I went to start the car and it wouldn't work. Same symptoms as above. Worked fine the day before. After a few times trying, I left it, went back home and went out again. Put the key in, but I noticed the clock was reset. And the car started! Confusing. For me, at least. I knew that the battery was weak, and it had been for a while, (I have ordered a new one) but it started... until now. The car won't start. Same symptoms again. Now what confuses me is that it won't even work with a jump start... Does that still mean the battery is weak or could it be the starter or the alternator?

Appreciate all the help!
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  #2  
Old 01-31-2015, 02:19 AM
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It is the battery. I wouldn't even start to consider other potential faults until you've at least eliminated the obvious one. If it doesn't start after that, then you can start to fault - find.
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Old 01-31-2015, 03:07 AM
ard ard is offline
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Confused. Seems you ordered a battery in the middle of a sentence....

Is the new battery installed? Yes or no?

If no, install it and see how it goes.

BMW does odd things with this system- it isnt just battery- cable- solenoid-starter like the old days. Various modules are sensing voltage and can inhibit jump starting.....
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Old 01-31-2015, 03:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ard View Post
Confused. Seems you ordered a battery in the middle of a sentence....

Is the new battery installed? Yes or no?

If no, install it and see how it goes.

BMW does odd things with this system- it isnt just battery- cable- solenoid-starter like the old days. Various modules are sensing voltage and can inhibit jump starting.....
Sorry for the confusion, the battery hasn't arrived yet. I ordered it two days ago, and since it's weekend I need to wait til next week... So weird that it would inhibit jump starting... But the cars I tried to jump start with weren't particularly new or big ones either... And their batteries weren't new. So maybe the car wasnt given enough juice to be able to start? I'm just hoping for that...
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Old 01-31-2015, 08:09 AM
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Yeah, probably battery
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Old 01-31-2015, 09:53 AM
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Update:

My friend brought his truck with a bigger battery and jump started it - it worked!
BUT, as I was driving it to the shop, the car died. At first the wipers were going really slow.. Then I kept getting error messages of the 4x4 being out of order, transmission failure, airbags turned off etc... Such a panicking moment. Slowly everything shut down. Luckily I was able to pull over safely.
Called a tow truck and took it to the shop. It's most probably the alternator in this case. But I know for fact that the battery was weak too. Maybe it's them both combined? Or maybe the battery has always been good, but the alternator kept sucking all the juice out of it?
Anyway, I'm changing all of them. Not gonna pull up with any more headache.
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Old 01-31-2015, 10:57 AM
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Did you put the new battery in or just had it jump started? It could be either one. A bad alternator will kill a battery as well. But have the shop check the battery before buying a new one if you haven't already, may not be bad just yet.
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Old 01-31-2015, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by neliconcept View Post
Did you put the new battery in or just had it jump started? It could be either one. A bad alternator will kill a battery as well. But have the shop check the battery before buying a new one if you haven't already, may not be bad just yet.
The new battery hasn't arrived yet. It comes sometime next week. But yeah, I will have the shop to check the battery before installing the new one.
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Old 01-31-2015, 01:02 PM
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If you jump started it and then it died while driving it's the alternator, not the battery. Of course draining all the way down can kill a weak battery so you might have two problems now.
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Old 01-31-2015, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by wsmeyer View Post
If you jump started it and then it died while driving it's the alternator, not the battery. Of course draining all the way down can kill a weak battery so you might have two problems now.
Yeah, I figured this is the case...
I just think it's weird that the alternator died "only" after 7 years. I mean, shouldn't they last longer?
On our E46 320i it lasted for 14 years... and on the Mercedes 32AMG it gave up after 12 years...
Maybe it's not even the whole alternator (generator) that's broken on the X5, but the volt regulator...
I'll have the mechanics to have a look at it.
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