BMW Battery Registration | Programming Step-by-Step

In this guide, you will find step-by-step instructions on how to register and code a BMW battery using various tools such as Foxwell scanner, Carly, and INPA. 

BMW Battery Registration Tool

To complete BMW battery registration yourself, you will need an OBD2 scanner that can perform BMW battery registration. Here is a list of popular scanners that you can use to register a new BMW battery.

  • Foxwell for BMW NT510
    • One of the most popular BMW scanners. Use it to register a new BMW battery with similar specs as the old battery.
  • Carly for BMW
    • It can be used to register a new battery. Limited coding functionality.
  • Autel MaxiSys
    • Professional Level Diagnostic Scanner. It can be used to program and code any type of battery including AGM and lead-acid. Even if the replacement battery is significantly different than the original.
  • BMW INPA Software (INPA K+CAN)

How to Register BMW Battery Yourself

These instructions apply to 2002 and newer BMW models including 1, 3, 5, 6, X1, X3, X5 series.

  1. Replace the battery in your BMW. If you need help with this step see our guide on how to replace a BMW battery.  Recommended installing a new battery with specs as close as possible to the old battery. 

    bmw battery

     

  2. Locate the onboard diagnostic port under the dashboard near your brake pedal. The OBD-2 port on BMW cars has a small door that you need to open. You may also find a cover on the port that you need to pull out. Plug the BMW scan tool of your choice into this port. Remember generic OBD2 scanners cannot perform BMW battery registration. 

    bmw-obd2-port-register-battery

     

  3. Turn Ignition On. Turn the key to option II. If you have a Push Start button press it a couple of times. Don't press the brake pedal when you press the start button. All the dashboard lights should turn on. The engine shouldn't be running. You won't be able to perform the BMW battery registration procedure if the engine is running.

    turn on ignition to register bmw battery

     

  4. The last step is to register the new BMW battery. The instructions in this step will vary depending on the scanner that you use. See the instructions in the next section on how to register the battery using various scanners. 

    register bmw battery

     

How to Register BMW Battery with Foxwell

Foxwell NT510 for BMW is a scanner capable of registering a new BMW battery. This great scan tool is in fact capable of reading and clearing fault codes from multiple BMW systems.

For example, you can use this scanner to read and clear codes from modules such as engine, airbag, transmission, ABS and more.

Procedure

  1. Plug your BMW scan tool into the OBD2 port under the dashboard. ...
  2. Turn ignition on, the key to position II. ...
  3. Select BMW. ...
  4. Scroll down to the Body menu 4.
  5. Scroll down to Power Supply (Battery) and press Enter.
  6. Select option 2 for Battery registration.

NOTES

  • It can only register a new battery with the same specs as the original.
  • Make sure to update your Foxwell scanner to the latest software via the Foxwell website.
  • Foxwell's support is typically very slow to respond.

How to register BMW battery with INPA

BMW INPA K+CAN setup requires a laptop. INAP is more complex to set up and can be difficult for many owners. Not recommended if you do not have experience with the INPA software.

  1. Connect OBD-II Cable to your OBD-II port. Turn on your laptop, then run the INPA software.
  2. Select Body>Power Module
  3. Press F6 to Activate
  4. Press F2 to select Control
  5. Press F7 to select Register battery replacement
  6. If registration is successful you will get register battery replacement Activated properly

These steps will register a new battery with the same specs. These steps will not code a new battery with different specs.

What is battery registration and codding?

Battery Registration

  • Registration must be performed every time you change the battery on a 2002 and newer BMW. It lets the car know the battery installed is brand new.

Battery Coding

  • In addition to the registration procedure, you may need to carry out coding if you change the battery capacity or type. Coding would be required if the new battery has different specifications than the old battery installed in the car.
  • For example, if you install a battery with a higher or lower cranking ampere rating or switch between Lead Acid and AGM battery.

Why register a BMW battery?

  • A BMW battery needs to be registered so that the engine control module (known in BMW terms as DME - Digital Motor Electronics) can properly charge the battery.
  • Skipping the battery registration procedure can cause the new battery to fail prematurely.
  • BMW battery registration was introduced in 2002 and most BMW models require that you perform battery registration.
  • If your BMW is older than 2002, you don't need to perform battery registration.

What happens when you register a BMW battery? 

During the BMW battery registration process, the following happens:

  • Battery capacity is set to 80%

  • The current Odometer reading is stored

  • Delete stored battery statistics such as:

    • current,

    • voltage,

    • battery charge level.

  • Stored temperature statistics are deleted

Frequently Asked Questions 

  • When do I need to register a BMW battery? 
    • Every time you replace the battery on a 2002 and newer BMW you need to register it. If your new battery has different specs than the old battery you need to code the new battery in addition to registering it.
  • Can I replace the battery myself and drive it to the mechanic for the registration?
    • Yes. This is ok. No damage will happen if you have to drive your BMW for a few mins. It is the long overcharging or undercharging that can shorten the life of the battery or cause problems. 
  • What's the difference between BMW Battery Registration and coding? 
    • Our members often ask what's the difference between BMW battery registration vs. coding. Registration procedure clears the charging history of the old battery and tells your BMW that a new battery is installed which allows the car to charge the battery properly.
  • What is BMW Battery Coding?
    • Ideally, you should avoid installing a battery with different specs but that doesn't always happen. If you do install a battery with a higher or lower capacity, BMW has different charging maps (profiles) for each battery, such as  80Ah, 90Ah or 110Ah batteries. You will need to perform coding to let the DME module know that you changed battery capacity. 
    • If you changed battery type, you need to complete battery coding as well. BMW charges lead-acid type batteries differently than AGM batteries. 
    • You need to perform coding if you:
    • Change battery type from Lead Acid to AGM or vice-versa. 
    • Change the battery capacity. 
  • Why do I have to perform BMW battery registration?
    • Yes. Don't skip battery registration. If you don't have a scanner, find an independent repair shop that can complete this for you. Some may only charge 0.5 hr of labor.
  • Which BMW models need battery registration?
    • Most 2002 and newer models. E61, E63, E64, E65, E66, E67, 
    • E70, E71, E72, E81, E82, E84,  E87, E88, E89, E90, E91, E92,  E93, F01, F10.
  • Should I reset error codes?
    • If you had a BMW battery that was failing it is possible that a low voltage error code has been triggered and stored in various systems. Perform a scan of all systems and clear any codes that may have been stored. This procedure should also remove any Safe Mode including Energy Saving and Transport Modes.
  • How do I know if my BMW requires registration?
    • Here is a list of BMW models that need the battery to be registered. 
      • 2006 and up 3-series E90 E91 E92 E93
      • 2004 and up 5-series E60 E61 
      • 2003 and up 6-series E63 E54 
      • 2002 and up 7-series E65 E66 
      • 2007 and up X5 series
      • 2008 and up  E70 chassis
      • X6 series E71 chassis
    • Check with your BMW dealer to confirm.
Vehicle System
Battery & Charging System BMW

I tried to register and code a different type and size battery on my 06 530 xi BMW using the new NT510 scanner . Even though there is a note above saying the procedure is different the NT 510 scanner does not have the capability to code and register a different battery . I got this info straight from Foxwell . I then tried using the Carly to do the same procedure , when I went to register the new battery Carly crashed . I contacted Carly who are aware of the crashing issue even though on their website it says it will do what I want for the model bmw I have and a test run on their free download as they advised . Carly said they are working on this and a new update to resolve this will be coming out but they don't know when . So in a nutshell nether of the above methods will code and register a different battery . I hope this saves some frustration , a waste of time and money to other readers who wish to do this .

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  • Everton,

    Thank you for the update. Your feedback is very important to us. It helps other members and also helps up improve this guide.

    As you mention, tool manufacturers keep updating the software. Sometimes new versions of the software may cause issue or break functionality. We have notified the vendors you mentioned of this issue.

    For all those who are looking to program BMW themselves, try to install a new battery with as close as possible to the stock battery. When you replace the battery with one with the same specs, you simply perform programing.

    While if you change battery type or capacity, you need to perform coding which is where some of these scanners have trouble.

    If any user or mechanic would like to recommend another BMW scan tool that can perform battery coding, we will be happy to add it to this guide.

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  • Visitor

    Foxwell NT510 are completely useless for this procedure, and generally are unfriendly, wrong, and the customer support is non-existent.

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  • Visitor

    stored 2004 z4 this past winter and battery died and froze. replaced with a new battery which is a bit larger than the bmw battery. now no air or fan and low beam headlamps. only trouble lamp is a bad bulb otherwise all looks and runs well...what sort of reset is needed? thanks.

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  • Wonderful dyi, however using the Schwaben BMW tool (same software as Foxwell 510) ver 9.51 I was not able to register or code my new battery. I receive the following error code:
    Schwaben error display
    "Battery could not be replaced. Possible cause(s) of fault:
    -No communication with IBS or engine electronics.
    -DME/DDE program status cannot save battery change.
    -Terminal 15 was not switch on. (sic)
    -Engine running

    Car not running, Terminal 15 active. All other coding and erasing of codes functioning. I cleared all codes before trying the registration. I have seen multiple instances of this same problem in the forums. No one has provided a solution.

    Any suggestions?
    Thanks,
    Jeff

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  • Hi Jeff,
    What I would do is download the latest software from the Schwaben website. I assume they provide updates just like Foxwell since it is the same scanner, different name. Then try to perform the battery registration procedure again. If it fails, try reading all the system codes. Do you see any strange codes that have popup up since last time you tried the reset? If not, it time to contact the manufacturer or seller and ask them for a replacement unit. Let us know how it goes.

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  • Visitor

    I just purchased a new battery to install. Do I need to register the battery as soon as I hook it up or can I drive it for a day or two until I can get to somewhere to register it?

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  • Visitor

    Just replaced the original AGM 90 ah battery in my 2012 535i with a 105 ah AGM battery. Will the Foxwell NT510 or 520 register this correctly and let me select the new higher 105 ah type? If not, is there another type scanner that will? Thanks!

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  • I would like to know if F30 need battery registration.
    I have replaced a new one last week work nomal and no error code so far
    Thanks

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  • This question has been brought up before. You can install the battery yourself and then drive the car to a repair shop or the dealer to get it register.

    It will not casue any problems or damage to the battery.

    Problems with BMW come up when the battery is in there for a long period and not registered. Mainly the life of the battery gets shortented due to over charging or under charging.

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  • Visitor

    2014 328i x plan to replace battery, read through previous posts and "Very Very Helpful" , I'mgoing to purchase Foxwell NT510

    Questions, Should I keep a 12v supply to under hood jump post to ensure that I do not need to reprogram windows? I would isolate/insulate + post at battery in trunk to avoid short. Or does the car/computer store window settings?

    Original OEM Exide battery is 90AH 900CCA, believe original to car dated 2013... Only new AGM batterys I can find beside dealer
    are all 95AH 900CCA (or much lower/higher cca's which I won't put in) Would i have any issue in programming the new battery with higher AH rating of 95A ? From what I read previously the car will only charge at 90A

    Also sounds like I should run the car for a few minutes like one was in previous post to acclimate the new battery to car, he wasn't able to program at first, then he started car and after shutting off it programmed with ease with the Foxwell NT510
    Again Thanks for ALL the Information !!!

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  • Yes the dealer can do the registration. The battery doesn't get damaged that quick. It is the repetitive overcharging that can hinder the battery performance. Get the car to the dealer to do the registration. They will need to perform coding as well if you changed battery type (lead acid vs AGM) and capacity.

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  • The new one I have inserted should be same type AGM & 90ah. Anyway I will drive to the service and process the registration this weekend. Thanks MB

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  • The FOXWELL NT510 battery registration. Will only allow you to register the OEM BMW Battery. If you change the battery to a AGM or higher or lower capacity you must use a GT80 scanner Cost of over $2000.00 THE NT510 will not register battery change, only OEM battery replacement FYI /// BMW E64

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  • My new Foxwell NT510 did the same to me. I had original BMW AGM battery for over 10 years on my 2007 E93 90Amp 900CCA and changed to Duralast H8-AGM 95Amp 1000CCA. I was not able to register first because my new battery not BMW part. So I start register as new original BMW battery first using numbers from old original battery and it was registered. I let it run car for one hour make sure no check engine or other surprises. After that I start register my battery again and this time I used option: same AGM with different capacity. I was ready to put six digit number i had on my receipt from the store and negative terminal four digit number actual battery production date 1017. I chose option not original BMW battery expecting it will deny registration like before. What was my surprise this time Foxwell didn't ask to fill any battery information, just simply registered. I checked battery registration history and it showed two battery registrations time of registration first battery, which I pushed as the same OEM and time of my last registration not OEM. What I think, on board computer will wipe clean previous settings and will estimate new battery parameters and will adjust charging accordingly. I will check battery charging tomorrow to make sure it's not overcharging. Hope it helps.
    Just checked my charging system with multimeter. Showed 12.6volt before start the car, drops to 10.8V when crank the starter and went to 14.6 right after, than gradually drop charging to 14.3 in about one minute time and stay that way. I connected Foxwell to check battery parameters and it showed battery cranking 91 Amp. My old battery was 90 Amp and new 95 Amp. I guess Foxwell scanner was programed to 2014 and in that time there was no batteries for E93 with AGM 95 Amp. I looked other scan tools able to register the battery, there is video and showed maximum AGM battery can be programed only to 90 amp. Well, my car charging normal now, battery registered so I will keep my Foxwell NT510 as it has a lot to offer. Loaded with valuable BMW features very usable. I manage to clear other invisible problem and glitches with computer management system. Simply clear all of them and found my car start running much better and some visible problem disappear, like windows was acting erratically when close convertible top, transmission was shifting little hard and i thought it's normal for spot car, but after clearing its shifting smooth like a batter, windows not acting up any more . Even engine get smoother as well, cause throttle body minor glitch was cleared. I think it is great affordable tools to keep if you have BMW, and you can check trouble codes and check engine light on any car in production as well. Hope it helps.
    Leo.

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  • Visitor

    Just FYI...as of 02/17/20, Carly will not register E65 batteries. Just discovered this with my Alpina B7...learned the hard way and I am attempting to reach Carly support to ask why.

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  • Visitor

    I cannot register the battery in the bmw e60 M5 V10 s85 through INPA. Do you have a tip? I've tried for Machine and power but there is no option !!!! Thanks

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  • Visitor

    Great article..strangely for me though I never had any errors and hence the need to register my battery . Been changing batteries on my 2011 X1 every 3years with non BMW sold batteries..yet never an error on my screen.never any charging or battery trouble. Keep my fingers crossed .

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  • Visitor

    My BMW is an E46 2002 M3 Convertible with 3.2L Engine which was built in November 2001 in Germany before shipping to US. This model is not in the list of BMWs indicated above that require Battery Registration. Also I did not see an IBS sensor at the positive terminal of the battery. Do I need to register a new battery?

    If I do not need to register a new battery, do I still need to code the DME if the new battery has a different specs than the old battery?

    Thanks in advance

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  • Visitor

    I replaced my alt (rebuilt) and battery (new) . But now when its cold out and i start it the voltage is anywhere from 10-11.5 v. After 5-20 (depending how cold it is out side) it jumps up to 14v. the battery test good before starting it. do you know what this could be?

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  • Visitor

    Thank you for putting this guide on how to register a BMW battery together. I have been searching on BMW forums and Youtube and I get a lot of different suggestions. One guy on Youtube swaped the battery by keeping a power source connected when swaping the battery. I think what people don't understand is that the registration procedure cleares the charging history of the old battery. When you swap the battery without doing registration, it's not that your BMW will stop working. The problem as stated above is that your battery may not last as long or charge properly.

    Again, thanks for sharing. I will bite the bullet and get the Foxwell scanner. Based on my research Carly scanner went into a yearly subscription which is not that appealing.

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  • Visitor

    Should the car start without the battery being registered. Was told battery was bad. Stopped near home and would've crank. Someone brought me a new battery and installed it but it won't turn over.

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  • If your car stopped running and wouldn't crank and&nbsp someone brought new battery and cannot crank engine anyway, you have a bigger problem than battery. Make sure your car is in park position first (would not crank in drive or reverse position do to safety switch). Second, did you hear any knocking noises coming from engine before it shutdown, any engine oil light, engine temperature light on prior shutdown? Check for any oil or ante-freeze leak? If yes, you have engine problem and it will not crank if engine seized. If that is what happen you should hear starter hard bang and not turn over even with brand new battery. Third, if engine dyed quietly and wont start any more but starter keep spinning engine, than you have fuel distribution or ignition problem: possible fuel pump failure or simply no gas in the car (check gas gage), MAF sensor or throttle body. No spark: possible crank, cam sensor, spark plugs or coils but very rare all of them go bad simultaneously. Possible ECM problem car will not start but engine should crank. Forth, but very rare: your timing chain and chain components broke, than starter will spin engine without creating any compression and most likely you did hear a some engine noise prior chain failure. &nbsp Also very important is to check your drive belt, tensioners and alternator bearings. Make sure they are not frozen and spinning free. And last is the answer on your first question: YES, the car should start without battery being registered. Hope it helps and good luck.

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  • Visitor

    I removed a negative terminal on my BMW 116i 2010 battery, after that indicators, lights, and front windows can't be turned on and the dashboard is giving me a certain error.

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  • Hi, just quick question. When i need to do quick installation or replacing steering wheel with airbag, i need to disconnect battery. I will not change battery so no registration needed right? Thanks

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  • You are correct nakedman.

    <strong>You don't need to do battery registration when you temporarily disconnect the battery and reconnect it. </strong>

    Hope this helps!

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