What to Do Before Starting a Car That Has Been Left Sitting for Months

Although it is quite normal to see multiple cars in a regular Malaysian household, there’s a chance that one of them has been abandoned for quite some time.

Did you know that leaving your car untouched for long periods of time can cause more damage to it compared to driving it every day? On top of that, trying to start an abandoned car can lead to even more damage, especially when there are no proper precautions taken when storing it.

carsome abandoned car

If you’re trying to start a car that has been abandoned, it’s best to go through these steps first to make sure your attempt does not cause any further damage to the car.

Look for Signs of Leaks

Look under the car for signs of leaks before checking the liquid levels in the engine. Avoid driving your car if there are any signs of a leak since it can cause serious and expensive damage to the engine.

If there are leak stains underneath the car, here’s how you can try to identify where the leak is coming from:

  • Black or light brown liquid usually indicates the engine oil is leaking.
  • Red or brown liquid usually indicates the transmission fluid is leaking.
  • Clear, red or brown liquid usually indicates the power steering fluid is leaking.
  • Transparent yellow or brown liquid usually indicates that the brake fluid is leaking.

If possible, get a trustworthy mechanic to help you inspect and diagnose the leak before you attempt to start the car.

Check Fluid Levels in the Engine

It’s important to check the liquid levels in the engine before you try to start a car that has been abandoned for a long time. Since the engine relies on various liquids to run properly, any issue with them can spell trouble for the vehicle.

carsome check car oil

Make sure there is enough engine oil, coolant, brake fluid, and transmission fluid before you proceed to start the engine. Also, if any of these liquids seem gritty, murky, or too dirty, then it is recommended that you flush them out and replace them entirely.

Make Sure the Brakes are Functioning

When a car is inactive for some time you have to pay attention to the brakes since they tend to seize due to the buildup of rust on the rotor and brake pad. If you feel grinding when applying the brakes, and hear a high-pitched squeaking noise, this also means that they have gone bad and need to be replaced.

Inspect the Battery

Car batteries are known to last for up to three years. Despite that, if a car has been abandoned for an extended period, it will still slowly lose its voltage, leaving you with a dead battery. You can jump-start the car to solve this issue, but remember to check the battery terminals to make sure they’re clean from debris and corrosion first.

carsome change battery

However, if the car will not restart after jump-starting, you might have to replace the car battery altogether or there could be an issue with the car’s electrical systems and you will need a mechanic to diagnose the problem for you.

Read more: The Proper Way to Jump-Start Your Car

Examine the Tires

Leaving a car stationary for an extended period of time will cause flat spots to develop on the tires. Tires under static vehicle load for a prolonged period of time are susceptible to this condition.

In some cases, driving a car for a while will clear the flat spots. But often, it can be permanent and when this happens it becomes necessary to replace your tires with new ones. Tires with flat spots are unsafe to drive with since they cause excessive vibrations when you’re driving and mess up your handling. 

Read more: What you need to know about car tires

Replace the Fuel

Petrol has a shelf life of around three to six months before it starts to degrade. When a car has been abandoned for any period longer than that, you should properly drain the old petrol and then refill the tank before you start your car.

When the old petrol starts to oxidize, it may cause deposits and other impurities to clog up the inner mechanisms of your engine, causing substantial damage when you try to start the car.

Read more: Signs of a Faulty Car Fuel Pump: Here’s When You Should Replace It

Sell Your Car to CARSOME for a Fast & Convenient Selling Process

Instead of leaving your car parked, why not sell it to CARSOME to get instant cash? Besides, as the saying goes, ‘One man’s asset, may be another man’s treasure’. Aside from clearing your storage space, you can make an instant profit, and your car can also benefit other people as well.

carsome sell car

Here’s why you should sell your car to CARSOME:

  • Inspected for fair value: We’ll perform a 175-point inspection to offer you fair value on your car.
  • No paperwork hassle: We’ll handle all the paperwork needed to complete the sales transaction.
  • Fast payment: Once you accept our offer, we’ll ensure you’re paid as soon as possible.
  • No hidden fees: If you accept our offer, the price you see, is the price you’ll get. No additional fees are charged.

Selling to CARSOME is very easy. Follow these four simple steps to sell your car with us:

Step 1:  Book a FREE inspection appointment at carsome.my or via our mobile app.

Step 2:  Bring your car in for a 175-point inspection and we will offer you a price on the spot.

Step 3:  You can accept our offer or you can choose to put it up for bidding and sell to the highest bidder.

Step 4:  We will handle all the paperwork for you and you will receive payment in 1 hour*.

So, if you’re ready to sell your car or trade it in for a new one – we’re ready to assist you. Book a free inspection at carsome.my or via our mobile app today!

Read more: Enjoy Up to RM1,500 OFF Any Car When You Trade In Your Old One: Upgrade Your Ride Now!