How to Start a Car that’s Been Sitting for Years (Wont Start)

How to Start a Car that’s Been Sitting for Years (Wont Start)

one, two, three, four! Rev up your engines! It’s time for the Scotty Kilmer Channel I just had this corvette towed over to my house, it sat in the garage for 15 years,
hasn’t been driven since 97, so now I’m going to show you how to get a car
running it’s been sitting for years, first thing to do is empty out the gas
tank, because that’s not gasoline in there anymore, it’s more like turpentine, so get
a long hold and a tank to put some gas in, and siphon the gas out of the tank,
but don’t suck like people used to, you can kill yourself breathing it, use a
pump, just stick it in the pump, and suck it to get the gas out, then just
transfer it into your can, then it’s time to get five gallons of new gas and pour
it in the tank, and pour it in, now you know the battery’s going to be dead after that
many years, and in this case we just bought a new one to stick in, and now
comes the moment of truth, let’s turn the key and see what happens,
it only clicks, well it means either the engine is locked up, or the starter’s bad,
so we’ll get a socket and a wrench and see if we can turn the engine over, well
here we go, well the engine turns, so time for new starter, well here’s the old
greasy starter, now we’ll see what happens, well spray in a little start and
fluid in the carburetor, and then crank it and see what happens,
what do you know, fifteen years later and she starts right up, and of course once
you get it running you got to change all the filters, oil and filter, radiator,
power steering, transmission, because when a car sits for 15 years, everything’s
going to be bad, and watch all the hoses and check all the brake lines too, then pray
like mad that all the oil seals don’t go bad and it starts leaking everywhere, but hey,
at least it’s running now and that’s half the battle, and remember if you’ve got any
car question just visit Scotty Kilmer .com and I’ll answer them as soon as
I get back from the devil’s hole.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. ⬇️Scotty’s Top DIY Tools:

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    2. Cheap Scan Tool:

    3. Professional Socket Set:

    4. Wrench Set:

    5. No Charging Required Car Jump Starter:

    6. Battery Pack Car Jump Starter:

    ⬇️Things used in this video:
    1. Siphon Pump:
    2. Starter Fluid:
    3. Ratchet and socket set:
    4. Mechanic’s Tool Set:
    5. Wrench Set:
    6. Shop Towels:
    7. Disposable Gloves:
    8. Steel Jack:
    9. Jack Stand:
    10. Common Sense
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    12. My computer for editing / uploading:
    13. Video editing software:
    14. Thumbnail software:

    🛠Check out my Garage to see what I use every day and highly recommend:

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  2. Hi , Scotty love your YouTube diy car repairs. I have a few issues that need attention and was hoping you can help. So here it goes I own a 1990 honda civic sedan 4dr. D15b2 1.5l 4cyl 16valve gasoline engine dual port fuel injection manual 5 speed and 1st issue is I had my engine rebuilt at a shop and when driving it around I can seem to get past 75mph aka 3200rpm because it starts to hesitate or Boggs out wanting to shut down until I let off the throttle 2nd issue is after taking a road trip from California to north carolina my engine started to stumble at idle then shut off and won't kick over so I'm planing on replacing the starter but suggestions would be helpful

  3. Continued message.. 3Rd my car has sat for 3 years with an empty dry tank no fuel in it what so ever so was wondering if I put fresh fuel in it will the car start and run or do I need to replace the tank or just use additives ….note fuel pump was brand New before it sat as WELL as lots of other parts including distributor battery radiator engine parts and all fluids injectors fuel filter need replacing as well as other parts but want to get it running first …can you please help out with suggestions because it also lacks horsepower at times with an erratic idle at random

  4. Hey Scotty! I thought that I'd add my 2 cents worth. I'd put some gas in the tank after it is pumped out, then rock the car around to slosh it in the tank, pump that out and put more fuel in it. I'd also add some 2 cycle oil or "Marvel Mystery Oil" to lube the parts a bit. I'd also put a small amount of diesel in each cylinder to give it a little lube, or some other light oil. The starter problem was probably just the solenoid. There is a large metal disc with 2 contacts that supply power to the starter motor. You can replace the solenoid, or take it apart and sand the disc and contacts. They are probably corroded from sitting. My goal is to get my brother's 1954 Dodge Coronet going again. It has been sitting for about 28 years.

  5. Scotty, Would you do a video of transmission fluid change on a 2002 Jaguar S type 3.0ltr Would much appreciate it. thanks!

  6. Great to see that nice old car working again, but in the part of the video where it was idling it was sounding rough?

  7. Hi. I got a ford transit 1.8d. Its been sitting for 8 months and when I went to start it the battery was flat and would not start with jump leads. Its turning but no crank. It won't even go with a toe. Would the diesel be gone bad or what. Any help would be appreciated. The battery was pretty dead when on toe. Would it still start on toe even if the battery was low. Cheers for help

  8. Keep an eye on the fuel pump and fuel pressure too.. From my experience usually the fuel pump will fail a few weeks or months later on cars that have sat for a very long time with old gasoline.

  9. I imagine the tires on that car would be toast too correct? Anything made of rubber will crack and fall apart over time. So bye bye tires, bye bye hoses, bye bye fan belt, etc…. You would have a lot of things to replace on a car that hasn't been driven! 🙁

  10. After 5+ years some of my valves on a Honda are almost stuck, takes a min or so for the spring to lift them back up.

  11. how long can i leave my car without starting it and my battery wont die?Like how many days? I usually start it once in 2 or 3 days!

  12. I would had cranked the engine a few times without spark to get the oil pressure through to the bearings.

  13. I always pull the fuel pump relay and crank the engine a few times to make sure any hydraulic lifters get full of oil, and all the oil journals and gallerys fill with oil. Nothing worse than starting an old car only to realize that brief moment without oil spun a few of the engine bearings!

  14. Hi Scottie love your videos mate but I need some help I haven’t started up my Holden V8 for about 4 years mate with all the oil sitting on the bottom of the engine can I cause any damage if I fire it straight up ??? Also do have to take the tank out and clean it or just drain the fuel out ??? Kind regards Brett

  15. Ive got a 318i bmw thats been sitting for yrs,It was hit and dented the bonnet so i replaced the bonnet,but my husband didnt do much else but used our other car,so it sat for about 2 yrs.Then he passed away my son used jumperleads & it started but that was a yr after he died.And now i dont know how to get it back on the road,we tried to push it into the shed but it wouldnt budge,So should i do all the things you suggested,and what about the spark plugs ?should i replace them,I can not afford to get a mechanic Any help you could provide would be much appreciated Thanxs P.S. I dont have my other car as it was stolen and burnt to the ground grrrrrrrr

  16. Hi, my car is idle for about 10 months now and I can not recharge the battery with a charger simply because I can not get on the road for 20 minutes to recharge it unfortunately. I am not a specialist like you so I want to do so I must take preventive measures. So what would you suggest to prevent this to happen? Of course don't allow the car to be buried under tons of snow during the winter time as I rule of thumb but beyond that, what is possible to do? Maybe I should just to buy another car battery (instead of a charger) and replace it so that I could turn the engine in the meantime? What else?

  17. My dad’s car has been sitting for about a month and when I started it it started up fine And I let it run for a few minutes and my mom says it’s not good for a car could be running

  18. hi Scotty just a quick question my 2015 Acura has been sitting for 3 years now in my garage. Is it important to run it periodically to lubricate the engine seals? Please let me know ? I would appreciate it! thank you so much

  19. Hi Scotty , I have a Pontiac GTO that I only drive in Summer how often should I start it and how long to let it run for ( including Air cond ) in the winter time . I don't drive it at all in winter . Thanks Scotty

  20. Hey buddy where do you get that pump to get the old gas out I got a 85 Monte Carlo it’s been sitting for about 3 years and wanting to get it back going

  21. i am new to being a car guy always liked, was able to get 1955 pontiac, there is a small metal pedal to the far left of the brake, close to the door what is it what does it do?

  22. I know a guy with over 150 parked Studebaker’s and he would like me to get them running so we could sell them thank you for making this video!

  23. I would have removed the distributor and used a tool to drive the oil pump, prime the oil system till it’s coming out in the valves. Then squirt oil in the cyls.and rotate the engine a couple times.

  24. 0:46 I appreciate that he doesn’t stand there and explain in depth on why it could kill you he just says “don’t do that you’ll die” and moves on

  25. Please help me, i have a 351 Cleveland 2v it was running and has only done 10.000 kilometers since rebuild, it was sitting near bushes for 7-8 months , i changed the battery put petrol in it and then some down the 600 holly vac sec, it wouldnt start, i noticed alot of water was in the feul, so i cleaned out the tank , cleared the feul lines cleared the mechanical feul pump dismantled and cleaned the carburetor cleaned out the manifold and the combustion chambers by turning the engine with plugs removed , removed feul filter , rain it strait to the carburetor, installed carburetor with new gasket and correct sealant, cleaned plugs , but not too sure if they are still good , they were all carbon fouled, the distributor is fairly new, a procomp distributor, the coil has been on the engine ever snce i had it , since 2002 , a gold lucas coil, im not mechanically minded enough to get it going, i dont have tools, but i need to drive this car away from where i am , the landlord has told me to leave now, i cant get a mobile mechanic to come fix it

  26. What does mean when the rear wheels wont rotate the parking break isn't on any help is greatly appreciated my Grandpa died and left a car sitting in my grandma's drive way and the code compliance jerk served her like 5 different notices for different things, help please

  27. Was just gifted a 91’ Lincoln lsc that hasn’t been driven in 10 years (only known problem was a bad air spring that they didn’t wanna bother with) should I prime the engine before attempting to start it? I intend to pour marvel mystery oil into the spark plug holes, dump/ replace all the fluids and filters and change the battery

  28. Scotty, My 1984 chevy truck has not moved in 3 years and I went to move it out of my garage and i can hear the gear links moving but when i put it into neutral it doesn't move at all. Could the brakes be seized?

  29. Hey Scotty, could you slow down and give more details? Where did you get that pump? Can I use a basketball pump? What screw did you turn on the engine? How do you know it need a a starter? Is it OK if I put in new gas with the old gas already since it already had only 1/4 tank or less. My car Oldsmobile Cutless Sat 2 yrs. And won't s6art. Already leaking oils. Oh, the key got stuck in the ignition in the on position when I tried to start it. What to do?

  30. I have a motorcycle that I bought new in 1985. It is still running the original battery. It has dried out a few times but worked fine when I added water. It is a Yuasa battery. I have been through plenty of batteries on other cars and motorcycles but this one keeps on working and will hold charge for weeks. I have no idea why this is so. BTW the bike is kickstart only.

  31. Very useful video I’m picking up my grandfathers truck that has been sitting in a garage for about 20 year

  32. Not all cars are made so that you can insert a hose into the fuel tank. Some are made with a stopper.

  33. I am looking to buy a 1950 pontiac that has been sitting in a barn for twenty years to be sure should i pull the plugs gift the cylinders a shot of atf and let sit ?

  34. Mini Cooper JCW sitting for two years. New engine, brakes, callipers, tires, clutch, fuel pump, and the nut behind the steering wheel. Nothing to it.

  35. My 1950 Dodge sat in a junkyard for 23 years. Pulled it out. Took out the 6 spark plugs and put 50% lightweight oil and transmission fluid..let it sit for one week in the hot sun. Then put a huge socket on the crank shaft to loosen it up. It was a little difficult, but it moved. Put new spark plugs and a new battery. Used alternator…starter was ok. Carburetor was ok, but the gas line was bad. Cleaned all the lines. Soaked the carb with gas. Checked the sparkplug cables and ignition. Cranked…spray some gas…and boom! The old rats nest blew out the exhaust…and ran for another 20 yeats!

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