VW California leisure battery replacement

A few weeks ago we were away in the van the weather was warm over the course of a couple of mornings I noticed the fridge was off, I initially thought that I had somehow knocked it off while raising or lowering the roof. After the third time I noticed the fridge would run for several minutes then turn its self off I could see ”this was as a result of the battery although showing 60% the voltage dropped to around 7 volts shortly after the fridge was turned on.

Time for some new leisure batteries.

The originals are 7P0-915-105-A. VW replacement cost over £500.

Replacement needs to me AGM I went for Varta LA80

‘To remove the batteries turn the seat to access the front13mm nuts and loosen almost all the way off.

Putt the seat forward and remove the 13mm bolts from the back of the seat runners.

I tilted the seat forward and wedged a piece of wood under the runner to aid access.

Remove the rubber battery cover and disconnect the -ve terminal.

Remove the cover to accessory the rear battery and undo the clamp holding the battery in place and carefully remove the battery.

Disconnect the battery -ve terminal and then the +ve terminal from both front and rear batteries.

Remove the front battery

There’s a plug in the original batteries that needs to be removed and placed into the new battery

Lift the new battery in to the passenger seat void and connect the breather pipe and connect the +ve battery terminal.

Connect the rear battery +ve terminal first then the -ve terminal an lift into the rear battery compartment not fogetting the breather pipe.

Finally connect the front battery -ve terminal and tighten both battery retaining clamps, replace the rubber cover on the front battery and prefix the seat.

I plugged the van into the mains and confirmed the battery were charging, i had to reset the time and date on the camper control unit  

24 thoughts on “VW California leisure battery replacement

  1. Just finished a successful swap of both leisure batteries by following these excellent instructions. Thank you!!

  2. Pingback: VW California Leisure Battery Replacement – Sterling Adventures

  3. Great step by step guide, thank you. I was going to replace mine this weekend. Out of interest what’s the reasoning behind the -ve off of the front battery then doing the rear battery before returning to the front battery for the +ve?

      • I replaced both the leisure batteries with your guide. Worked a treat. Luckily I have the height adjustable comfort seats so could jack the passenger seat up enough to get the battery out without unbolting the base. Opted for a pair of Varta LA80 (£327) from Tayna.co.uk

  4. Excellent – this is a god description – but you will need strong fingers to lift the the old batteries out of tiny cupboard door. I replaced with 2x E39 Varta £130 each plus £10 postage (May 2021) from Tayna. These are slightly smaller and less (5) Amp/h less – They work well. Saved well over 50% on VW quote to fit (£260 each plus £60 fitting = £580)

    I still have the old ones which will be useful as they still pack enough charge to start a car and I still have £310 for wine to put in my most excellent fridge!

  5. Brilliant stuff. I just replaced both batteries and saved nearly £400 off what the VW dealer quoted. Thanks.

  6. Hey, I would like to install a special aux battery (rear, A24 battery) from the beginning since my T5 California 2005 don’t have one, but I’m not sure how to wire up. Do I have to go all the way to the second battery (A1) under the seat or can I manage all the connections under the fridge? There should also be a fuse installed between the A24 and the A1 battery.

    Thank you in advance, I would really appreciate your help

  7. Many people are talking about recoding the batteries, you didn’t mention if you did that.Would it be necessary ? Thanks Pete.

  8. Thank you for an excellent tutorial – just changed my 10 year old leisure batteries! Hardest bit was sawing the wood to make the wedge 🙂

  9. Just about to replace my 10 yr old batts in my cali. Fitting Varta LED 80 EFB. next level down from AGM. £280 a pair . see how they go.Thank you for posting you replacment infomation.

  10. Thanks for this. Great help. The VW batteries look suspiciously like the Vartas in every detail. It’s almost as if VW buy a product off the shelf, stick their own label on it then double the price.

  11. Hi Jamie, thank you for posting this information about battery replacement (found you quoted in a thread on VWCaliforniaclub.com).

    Your detailed instructions made the task straightforward and all done in an hour……. My batteries work as they should now and the heating does too!



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