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Your BMW E39 5 Series key fob is not working? Here’s how to fix it...

Your BMW E39 5 Series key fob is not working? Here’s how to fix it

We all love our older BMWs but while they may still be true to the Bavarian style of making cars, they are prone to suffering from old age. That’s not necessarily a hint at rust or other issues normally associated with older cars but other tricky issues too, like running out of battery on your key fob.


It may seem like a rather uncommon issue but it happens all the time. Older BMW models, that required a physical key to be inserted into the ignition, used to recharge the small battery found inside the fob while you were driving. This was an easy way to make sure that your battery stays charged all the time and that you don’t have to spend money on a new one every once in a while.


However, today, as older E39 models are becoming collector’s items, they tend to be driven less and less. Therefore, the batteries are not getting charged on a daily or even weekly basis, leading to the potentially unwanted scenario where you can’t unlock or lock your car.


Unfortunately, you can’t just change the battery on your key fob so you’ll need to get some specialized help. The first thing that comes to mind is going to the dealer but there are other, cheaper alternatives out there.


One of them is to have a new set of keys purchased separately. However, you’ll also need to initialize the keys and have your car’s EWS module reprogrammed. The EWS is the module that handles everything related to starting your car. It’s also known as an immobilizer. It was put in place to make sure your car isn’t stolen but, in this case, it can work against you.


Therefore, once you buy a new set of keys, you’ll need a to make sure they work with the EWS on your car. To do that, you can ship the EWS along with the keys to a specialist who can reprogram it and have it sent back to you. Then, you need to install it back into your car, initialize your keys and you’re all set.
With the new remote keys you get from us you can easily open the keys and replace the battery so you don’t need to worry about the same problem happening again in the future.


To initialize your E39 5 Series key fob you need to do the following:

  • 1. Close all doors and put your key in the ignition and turn it to position 1 and off (within 5 seconds).
  • 2. Remove your key from the ignition and then hold down the unlock button and press the lock (BMW Logo center) button three times.
  • 3. Your central locking should now lock and then unlock to confirm that the key has been programmed
  • 4. When done, put the key in the ignition and switch the ignition to the first position and then off again to confirm that all the programming has been done.

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