Out-of-operation vehicle tune up - what's essential?
March 31, 2019 11:53 AM   Subscribe

I now have a car that has been sitting idle for 3+ years (for stupid reasons), with only very intermittent use (moved around once a year). Fluids were not drained prior to the idle period. This is in a non-freezing climate. It's a hybrid. Obviously the main battery is dead. When I take it in to get tuned up, what should the priorities be? I'd like to get it in shape to smog it, re-register it, and sell it; I don't want to sink an infinite amount of cash into it, but don't want it to be a dangerous vehicle. KBB value is around $3.5k.
posted by benzenedream to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
 
Try jump-starting it and driving it. Check the tire pressure and that the oil isn't tar, but other than that, it might be good to go.
posted by notsnot at 2:23 PM on March 31, 2019 [1 favorite]


If you are still in the Bay area, contact Luscious Garage in SF. They only work on hybrids and are generally great with these kinds of questions.
posted by gingerbeer at 2:48 PM on March 31, 2019


I suggest that the gasoline may have soured. Running that gas through the engine could create a much more expensive tuneup. Drain the fuel tank and put in fresh gas laced with injector-cleaner before you start it.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 11:30 AM on April 1, 2019 [1 favorite]


Based on this car talk forum post, I reinflated the tires, hauled it to the closest mechanic, and am having them drain the gas, replace the oil, replace the brake fluid, and replace the battery, after checking to see if any of the belts or chains are rotten/corroded.
posted by benzenedream at 4:05 PM on April 2, 2019


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