3pete
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Sun Oct 10, 2021 3:25 pm

A quick update here (viewtopic.php?f=11&t=17163&p=69898#p69898) where I am more convinced that BMW is 'sandbagging' a bit in their BMS which impacts estimated range.

One additional thing I'll note is that with the software upgrade, my battery icon in the bottom left corner of the screen (ignore the circle) changed from this:
Image
to this:
Image

Based on my experience, I would encourage anyone with the battery icon in the top screen to ask for a software update. It's tough to say it's worth whatever BMW will charge for it ($500?), but I suspect it would make a difference in range estimates.

Neil
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2014 10:11 am
Location: Davis, CA USA

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Sun Oct 10, 2021 5:10 pm

Do you know what your previous software version was and what your new version is? (Available in the saved .mpd profile file on a USB drive plugged into the center console.) Should be listed in the file like this: <i-step>I001-17-07-500</i-step>

My 2014 kappa is close to 70% and am waiting as long as I can before bringing it in for a capacity check.
Neil L.
2014 i3 Rex, Giga World, all the trimmings.

alohart
Posts: 2450
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Mon Oct 11, 2021 12:05 am

3pete's i3 must have had a pretty old software version prior to his recent update because the new battery icon appeared when our i3 was updated to I001-18-11-520. The previous version on our i3 was I001-16-07-506, so the battery icon must have changed between July, 2016, and November, 2018.

If the BMS was updated so that more of the battery pack's capacity is usable, I would be interested in knowing what software version included that update. However, another interpretation of the increase in usable capacity in 3pete's battery pack might be that the capacity test itself, deep discharges and high charges, calibrates the BMS resulting in more usable capacity. I don't recall reading about any capacity test that didn't result in a usable capacity increase.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

3pete
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Mon Oct 11, 2021 3:11 pm

Neil wrote:
Sun Oct 10, 2021 5:10 pm
Do you know what your previous software version was and what your new version is? (Available in the saved .mpd profile file on a USB drive plugged into the center console.) Should be listed in the file like this: <i-step>I001-17-07-500</i-step>

My 2014 kappa is close to 70% and am waiting as long as I can before bringing it in for a capacity check.
Yes, I went from: I001-17-11-543 to: I001-21-03-530.

As far as waiting... I'm not sure it's worth it. On the one hand, if your current capacity is adequate for what you need, then great! On the other hand, if you're starting to sweat the range on your trips, it's probably worth getting it checked now. Take your manual, and point to the page that capacity is warranted and must be serviced by an authorized dealer ask them to do the check for free. Worst they can do is say "no".

3pete
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Mon Oct 11, 2021 3:15 pm

alohart wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 12:05 am
3pete's i3 must have had a pretty old software version prior to his recent update because the new battery icon appeared when our i3 was updated to I001-18-11-520. The previous version on our i3 was I001-16-07-506, so the battery icon must have changed between July, 2016, and November, 2018.

If the BMS was updated so that more of the battery pack's capacity is usable, I would be interested in knowing what software version included that update. However, another interpretation of the increase in usable capacity in 3pete's battery pack might be that the capacity test itself, deep discharges and high charges, calibrates the BMS resulting in more usable capacity. I don't recall reading about any capacity test that didn't result in a usable capacity increase.
It's true that I am associating the additional capacity with the software upgrade, but that may not be true. It could be the actual method of the battery test. I wonder if anyone has had a capacity check done without a corresponding software upgrade?

Software update seems more likely to me just because other manufacturers have done capacity tweaks that way before.

Neil
Posts: 64
Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2014 10:11 am
Location: Davis, CA USA

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Mon Oct 11, 2021 3:55 pm

I hardly drive my i3 anymore since I stopped commuting 75 miles a day before the pandemic even started. The reduced capacity/range is still adequate enough and it charges really fast now! :lol:. Otherwise, like 3pete said, if I were sweating the range I'd be more aggressive about getting something done about it. However, as I have been assuming that if the capacity is tested to be below the warranty limit I'd actually be able to have battery modules replaced (a hardware fix), this does not appear to be the case for most warranty claims I've heard about. So I'm not sure it is as important to wait, since the increased capacity appears to be due to a software upgrade, the test process, a BMW technician's incantation, or some combination of these and possibly something else and I'd probably have to pay for it anyway. I think those clever BMW engineers planned for this from the beginning to mitigate warranty claims on reduced capacity (a known phenomenon) and only would have to deal with hard battery failures which were shown to be much less likely.
Neil L.
2014 i3 Rex, Giga World, all the trimmings.

JohnKelly
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:02 am

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Tue Oct 12, 2021 8:13 am

The battery capacity icon is selected by going through the menu when you push the button on the end of the turn signal stalk.
2015 REX / Participating on plugshare w/level 2 Clipper Creek 32 amp, Moclips, Washington coast

Arm
Posts: 159
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2020 5:53 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Tue Oct 12, 2021 10:05 am

Neil wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 3:55 pm
I hardly drive my i3 anymore since I stopped commuting 75 miles a day before the pandemic even started. The reduced capacity/range is still adequate enough and it charges really fast now! :lol:. Otherwise, like 3pete said, if I were sweating the range I'd be more aggressive about getting something done about it. However, as I have been assuming that if the capacity is tested to be below the warranty limit I'd actually be able to have battery modules replaced (a hardware fix), this does not appear to be the case for most warranty claims I've heard about. So I'm not sure it is as important to wait, since the increased capacity appears to be due to a software upgrade, the test process, a BMW technician's incantation, or some combination of these and possibly something else and I'd probably have to pay for it anyway. I think those clever BMW engineers planned for this from the beginning to mitigate warranty claims on reduced capacity (a known phenomenon) and only would have to deal with hard battery failures which were shown to be much less likely.
You are a shining example of using what you NEED and not what you THINK YOU NEED like so many others.

Well done sir! :)

Arm
Posts: 159
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2020 5:53 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Tue Oct 12, 2021 10:10 am

3pete wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 3:15 pm
alohart wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 12:05 am
3pete's i3 must have had a pretty old software version prior to his recent update because the new battery icon appeared when our i3 was updated to I001-18-11-520. The previous version on our i3 was I001-16-07-506, so the battery icon must have changed between July, 2016, and November, 2018.

If the BMS was updated so that more of the battery pack's capacity is usable, I would be interested in knowing what software version included that update. However, another interpretation of the increase in usable capacity in 3pete's battery pack might be that the capacity test itself, deep discharges and high charges, calibrates the BMS resulting in more usable capacity. I don't recall reading about any capacity test that didn't result in a usable capacity increase.
It's true that I am associating the additional capacity with the software upgrade, but that may not be true. It could be the actual method of the battery test. I wonder if anyone has had a capacity check done without a corresponding software upgrade?

Software update seems more likely to me just because other manufacturers have done capacity tweaks that way before.
There's a simple way to find out. Drive the car a few times and see what range you get now after a certain number of miles. The most accurate way I've been able to calculate my range on my car (what it's going to actually give me in current conditions) is miles/% battery used.

For example, I'm averaging around 1.35 miles / % Battery Level. At full charge, I'm hovering around 124-145 miles per charge. I've seen as high as 164 miles at 100%. Overall since the last 1100 miles I've driven since I got my car at the beginning of September, I've averaged 5.1 miles/kWh. My Kappa is 29.2 kWh. So according to that calculation I should get 149 miles at 100% charge. But the miles/% charge is more accurate.

3pete
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: I took my 2014 i3 in for a battery capacity check and BMW added capacity to my battery

Thu Oct 14, 2021 3:25 pm

Arm wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 10:10 am
There's a simple way to find out. Drive the car a few times and see what range you get now after a certain number of miles. The most accurate way I've been able to calculate my range on my car (what it's going to actually give me in current conditions) is miles/% battery used.

For example, I'm averaging around 1.35 miles / % Battery Level. At full charge, I'm hovering around 124-145 miles per charge. I've seen as high as 164 miles at 100%. Overall since the last 1100 miles I've driven since I got my car at the beginning of September, I've averaged 5.1 miles/kWh. My Kappa is 29.2 kWh. So according to that calculation I should get 149 miles at 100% charge. But the miles/% charge is more accurate.
I tend to avoid looking at Range related metrics for my tracking because it varies too much based on the weather outside because I'm using the heat or AC. But in case you see something useful, here's a chart of that data on my car, duplicated: once colored by before/after capacity check and one colored by temperature. It seems like the orange may be higher than usual but definitely not as pronounced as the capacity charts.

Image

*I threw out measurements above 95% and below 5% battery because those were obvious outliers

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