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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went to open up my Golf R on Sunday the usual way -- grab the driver's outside door handle to unlock. Got nothing. Tried the button on the remote. Still nothing. And, of course, this is about 135 miles from home, so no way to get the other remote.

Swearing ensues.

"Is it the damn fob or the damn car?"

Tried using the key to remove the cap from the keyhole on the door. Turns out it comes off much easier if you pull the door handle out.

Key unlocks the door. I open the door and am greeted by the alarm. "Well, I guess the car is okay."

Start the car by holding the remote to the special spot on the right side of the steering column.

When I got home, I replaced the battery in the remote and it worked fine, as usual.

But I'm still kinda ticked off about it crapping out without any warning.
 

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That is odd. In my experience I have seen an alert on the dash at startup, when the battery needs to be replaced.

Good thing you knew how to get the car started with a dead remote!
 

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Same for my experience. The car had a reminder that the key fob needs a battery change. Had to change one when I bought the car a few months ago used.

2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI Autobahn
 

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I tend to replace my fob battery every year warning or no warning - the Kessy system does drain a lot of power compared to an older key fob.

Same with all the sensors around the car, I never realized that even when you turn the car on in the accessory mode, all those sensors activate even though the engine isn't turned on. Learned that with the R at the drive in - left the car on in the accessory position to run the stereo as I've always done with my previous cars - after a couple of hours, warnings started coming on and systems started shutting down - ended up killing the battery.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Just to prove that reality has a sense of humor, the battery on the remote for my Ghost crapped out today. It started, of course, while I was about 30 miles from home. Why do these things never happen when the other key is nearby?

Anyway, the car was kind enough to continue working properly (starting, locking, unlocking) but sounded a chime and displayed a message every time I restarted the car for the rest of the trip. Along the way, though, I stopped and bought a replacement battery. Once installed, all is back to normal.

That's two out of my three cars. I'm half expecting the Miata key to die this week, too. At least I have the battery on hand for that one.
 

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I had the same thing happen when I was out of town with no one other than my 12-yr old son around, in a downpour, had to look up on my phone how to pop the handle to uncover the key slot, and then deal with the alarm going off. Rediculous that there is no low battery warning.
 

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Definitely worth it to make the key fob battery replacement an annual event. I do that with all the key fobs for my vehicles and motorcycle.

2018 Volkswagen Golf GTI Autobahn
 

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They do that. My Golf R has done it twice since I have owned it. I now just change the battery about every 6 months in the fobs.
 

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FWIW this happens to me this past weekend. 2019 MK7.5 R. No warning whatsoever. I keep a spare battery inside the glovebox which is half useless if the car won't open lol.
 

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When my friend had his Mk7 GTI , I had to tell him the procedure for unlocking and starting the car with a dead fob. Every 6 months! I just do it once a year. First time the battery lasted about a year and a half, also gave me a warning. Now I make sure I have some spare batteries in the house.

I also keep the keys far away from the car. Has anybody tested to see if they can open their car via the handle, with their normal spot they leave their keys in the house?
 

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I went to open up my Golf R on Sunday the usual way -- grab the driver's outside door handle to unlock. Got nothing. Tried the button on the remote. Still nothing. And, of course, this is about 135 miles from home, so no way to get the other remote.

Swearing ensues.

"Is it the damn fob or the damn car?"

Tried using the key to remove the cap from the keyhole on the door. Turns out it comes off much easier if you pull the door handle out.

Key unlocks the door. I open the door and am greeted by the alarm. "Well, I guess the car is okay."

Start the car by holding the remote to the special spot on the right side of the steering column.

When I got home, I replaced the battery in the remote and it worked fine, as usual.

But I'm still kinda ticked off about it crapping out without any warning.
I bought a two pack of CR2025 batteries to have on stand by. Takes 30 seconds to replace the battery in the key fob.
 

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So I've noticed that my key fobs last about 18 months, even the spare one that I never use. I've seen the low key battery warning once in the 5+ years of ownership. My experience has been the same as yours, no warning, battery in the fob just dies and thankfully I've only had this happen once when I wasn't at home.
 

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I’ve had to replace my key fob battery twice in two years. So they only last about a year.

Both times there was no warning. I carry spare fob batteries in the glove box now.

I was with my wife, and she also has a Golf, so we just swapped batteries to get into my car. Her batteries last about five years, but she doesn’t have the system where you just grab the door handle and it opens.

I think the key is constantly trying to communicate with nearby cars as you walk around, and that kills the battery. With the other system, where you have to press the button to unlock the car, the battery lasts a lot longer because it isn’t doing anything until you press the button,
 

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On a related topic, if you leave the car unused for a week or so, is it normal for it to stop responding to the door handle unlocking method, so you must press the button?

in addition, when it does this, you also have to hold the key near the steering column to get it working again? Then it’s back to normal once you’ve done this. It just happened to me.
 

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On a related topic, if you leave the car unused for a week or so, is it normal for it to stop responding to the door handle unlocking method, so you must press the button?
this is aligned with what I have experienced. Dunno if it's exactly two weeks, but definitely after a few days, the car seems to go into some sort of sleepy mode.
 

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My keyless system is always wonky. I've gotten locked out of the car before pretty late at night and set the alarm off which was fun for my buddies neighbors. I couldn't get it to start inside the car once I was in. I change the battery in mine fairly often now.
 
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