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Explorer parked for 3 years

10-19-2011, 06:01 PM

Almost 3 years ago I got orders to Japan. Unfortunately I did not have enough time to sell my vehicle so I parked it. For about the first 6 months my sister would drive it around and put gas in it, then she just stopped. So for about 2 1/2 years it has jsut been sitting there. My father started it 2 times, then put some fuel preservative in it. My question is, what can I expect to have to change/do to get it running again once I return? I know I will have to drain the fuel and get a new battery but not really sure what else I can expect to have to fix on it. Thanks in advance!

10-20-2011, 10:00 PM
I don't feel I'm the best person to respond to this, but since no one else has, I'll give it a go to get some conversation started.

The battery is likely shot, and if the car is sitting somewhere where it gets below freezing, the battery may have frozen a time or two as well. Sounds like you were planning to change that anyway, along with the old fuel and fuel filter. You also will want to carefully inspect the tires to see if they are starting to dry rot. To don't want to be running down the highway and then discover the tires are shot.... While the spare tire was probably protected from UV and won't be dry rotted, you will want to make sure it is properly inflated.

It also would be a good idea to remove the air filter and make sure a mouse has not moved in. Checking the condition of the vacuum lines could reveal some that are brittle and will soon be causing a rough idle and low power situation.

The engine oil is likely broken down beyond the point where it can still protect the engine so you'll want to change the oil and oil filter. It may not be a bad idea to remove all the spark plugs and squirt a bit of oil in to the spark plug holes to lubricate the rings since it's been so long since they've seen oil.


10-31-2011, 02:11 PM
Sorry for the late response.

It would be wise to flush cooling system. The anti-corrosive properties break down over time.

Also inspect the brake lines and hoses for signs of deterioration and possibly bleed out the old fluid as well.

11-01-2011, 07:40 AM
VERY good suggestions. After sitting that amount of time there's a very good chance the brake fluid took on moisture. Considering the likely age of the vehicle (I don't see the model year mentioned) it is probably a good idea to replace the cooling system hoses and the serpentine belt as well.


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