How to Start a Car That Has Been Sitting for Months

Everything is getting normal now. You want to get back to your garage, throw that curtain that had been covering your car for months or even years, and you are pretty excited to grab the steering and take your boy to the road.

But wait, cars are not built for sitting for months or even weeks. And starting your cars after a very long time may not be easy as you think. Well, perhaps some of the modern cars can be easily started even after a long rest. But we are not talking about that now.

So let’s see how you can start a car that has been sitting for months.

Check your Car

After months of sitting inside the garage, maintaining a car and getting it back to the state of good health can be a difficult task. The first thing you need to do before starting a car is to check its components properly. From engines to fuels, brake systems, wires, tires, and other things can be a mess inside when your car has been sitting for months.

1. Inspect Engine Oil

The engine is the heart of the car. So, inspect its oil at the first.  To do it, you can check your engine oil by dipstick.  The dipstick will help you determine if your oil level is in safe-to-drive condition or not.  Besides that, you also have to watch out for the color of engine oil.  You need to change your oil instantly if you find it thick, dark, and gritty.

So, make sure you fill your engine with fresh oil before trying to jumpstart and ruining your engine at a later stage.

2. Watch other signs of leaks

To make things even faster you can directly find the problem of your car and fix it to start the car.  One can check other signs of leaks by watching down the floor under the car. If you see fluids, there are obviously some problems. So we have categorized the types of fluids that show different types of problems below.

Normally engine leak can be identified by black or brown colors. A transmission leak is indicated by a red or brown color. However, clear red or brown color also indicates the leak in power steering. And finally, the brake system leakage is indicated by the transparent or yellow color of the fluid.

3. Time to be battery doctor

It’s normal that after a while battery charge starts to drain down if not used. This is mainly the major and common problem people face when starting a car that has been sitting idle for more than months. So, let’s check your battery and help it to revive. 

One thing you can do to charge your car’s battery is by either giving it for a charge or jumpstarting. But make sure that your battery terminals are clean and clear of debris and corrosion.  Once you have jumpstarted your car, let it run for 5 to 10 minutes that will recover the battery charge. After that turn of your car and normally start it again.

To take a precaution for the next time, disconnect the battery from the engine so that it won’t be discharging while you plan to put your car in the garage for a long time.

4. Replacing the fuel or gas

The early thing to break down when a car rests for a month is fuel. By nature, some component of fuel starts to evaporate and is likely to lose its combustible property.

Also as time passes, the fuel also starts to form a gummy residue which gets into the fuel system and increases the chances of fuel blockage later.

In order to check if your fuel is damaged or not you can check its smell as well. The old fuel is likely to produce a sour smell that resembles the smell of garnish.

So drain all the fuel from your tank and refill it with fresh oil before starting the car.

5. Check Tires

A visual check along with an air pressure check should be done to check if the tires have enough pressure to run smoothly.  Even if the pressure of tires is good, the flat tires that have occurred due to the weight of the car it carried all along also impacts.

But fortunately, as you drive the car for about 10 to 15 minutes, the tires regain their shape. Lastly, if the tires are out of pressure, then you need to inflate them before starting the car and going for a drive.


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