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1968 Mustang 289 turns over but won't start

I’ve had my car sitting for 3 weeks and went out this morning to start it and it turns over but won’t start.

It has fuel and the battery seems to be providing enough power to the starter. It ran fine 3 weeks ago and I have not done any repairs recently that would be cause for the problem, I also changed the oil a month ago.

Thanks for any suggestions.


Did you check for spark?


Try dribbling a little gas into the throat of the carburetor…about a half ounce…no more.

If you get nothing from that then I’d check for spark as @tester mentioned.


Did you pump the gas pedal to set the choke?

My first thought was choke also. Whatever the cause it should not be hard to figure out on a '68.

I had the same problem with my 67 a couple of years ago, and tried all of the above without success. My starter also seemed to spin the engine over fine. Finally could think of nothing else, so took the battery out of my pickup and put it in the Mustang - started right up.

Edit: Forgot to add, my Mustang is also a 289, with a 2-barrel carb and 3-speed automatic.

Good luck.

When a carb equipped car sits for 3 weeks like that the fuel bowel can dry up , all the gas evaporates. That can prevent it from starting unless you pour a little gas down the air intake of the carb, as @Yosemite suggests above.

My Ford truck sometime suffers this same malady after sitting too long, and that usually works for me. Occasionally doing that allows it to start, but it quickly dies. Add gas again, starts fine, then quickly dies again. When that happens I pop the top off the carb for a quick look-see. Usually the problem is the float or gas inlet valve is sticking in the shut position, so the fuel pump can’t deliver any gas to the carb.

There’s at least a dozen other reasons why you’d get this symptom, but the above is a good place to start.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I’m going to try some of your ideas in the morning and I will keep you posted.

Pull a plug wire and see if its got spark…if it does…squirt a little fuel down its throat.

If you still have the old distibutor…you may have a date with the Points and Condenser…