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1990 Ford F250 that's sat for five years

I am looking at a 1990 f250. 4 X4 that has been sitting sent 2013 it has gas in it if I take the gas out of the truck can I drive it home if I put new gas in it

Who knows, it might start but there are so many things that could be bad about this thing you could very well be looking at a money pit. Tires are not any good now, all hoses are probably weathered , brakes could be frozen , did it have antifreeze in it all of these five years .
What about registration, will you have to pay back fees for five years ?
This is rude : but how much are they paying you to take this off there hands ?

Kelly Blue Book only goes back to 1992 and if this thing was running and in fair shape the value is from $1500 to $2000 and you will put that much into it.

Along with items listed by Volvo, cylinders may have rust and/or frozen rings. Before even attempting to start you might want to pull the plugs and add a shot of lubricant such as mystery oil to each cylinder then, with plugs still removed, turn over the engine with the starter. This will also get oil circulating in the engine.

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It’s not uncommon for a fuel pump to be inoperative from the get-go or fail soon after being put back into service when a car has been sitting for years. The gas goes stale and ruins them.

Even the fuel filter can screw up from sitting. Moisture settles in low areas and causes rust inside the filter.

Lastly, the fuel injectors can muck up. They may clear up or may not.

Smell the gas inside the filler neck. If it smells like old paint or varnish it may needs more than fresh gas. Try it and see what happens but I assume the way this is worded you haven’t bought the truck yet. That brings up the question of how far will the seller let you go in messing with it.

If you don’t know the seller personally there’s always the possibility of a bad engine or transmission and someone is playing dumb.

I remember there was a Benz that was towed into the dealer, after having sat for 5 years

It had a saddle style tank, and an external fuel pump

Both fuel sending units and the external pump were completely ruined by the crud in the tank

It smelled like varnish . . . as @ok4450 said

We had to dispose of the old fuel as hazardous waste, and I wiped out the fuel tank as best I could, but didn’t actually remove it, because the customer wouldn’t pay for that. All he paid for was the diagnosis, replacement of both fuel senders, the external pump and filter, new battery, plus wiping out the tank . . . without removal, as stated

With fresh fuel and those new components, it did start . . . but it took a very long time until the valve train quieted down to an acceptable level

I just thought of something else . . . the customer also declined an oil and filter change :confused:

Not changing the oil and filter on a Benz that sat for 5 years is horribly pathetic. How cheap can you get…

I’d also bet that Benz is no longer on the road.

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If you are getting it for free, and you are looking for a project, good luck. It could be fun, or a nightmare. If you are looking for transportation, you might look somewhere else. People rarely park up a fine running vehicle. There was some reason why it was abandoned 5 years ago, and that reason is still there, only worse.

Two tips from someone who does this sort of thing often with old motorcycles:

  1. Make sure you understand the legal stuff. Do they have a title, in their name? Generally speaking, no title, no deal. If they say they lost it, tell them to get a replacement. It’s much easier for them than for you. Someone also brought up registration fees and penalties. Some States charge a lot to start up an old expired registration. California has a calculator online to get an estimate, and it can go up to $800. Never spend five cents on a vehicle you can’t get clear title for, or that will cost more to register than it’s worth.

  2. Always (always, not almost always) search really carefully for the effect of rust on the body and frame, the suspension and front end parts. Anything with serious rust is probably not worth bothering with unless you are a skilled amateur welder. Even then, maybe not. Rust is called cancer for a reason.

I have a feeling he’s not getting it for free. Some guys tend to ask a fair amount of money for those older Ford 4x4 pickups, especially if they’ve got a full-floater , solid front end and a big engine

maybe op bought this truck to go off-roading . . . ?

I wouldn’t be surprised if the seller’s asking $2000 or more

If you still have this option, it may not be all that bad if it’s a model you really like. I spent several months looking at old trucks to use only as a spare vehicle for times I needed a bed. In summer 2018 I bought an old '01 F150 with only 103k miles but which had sat for 5 years under a carport. A good mechanic is absolutely required.

The old truck would start and run OK but the gas had turned to varnish so we put in a bottle of B12 ChemTool and topped off with premium gas. I drove it to my mechanic whom I was soon to become very familiar with and had all fluids changed (oil, transmission, coolant, etc), new tires, new plugs, and new front brakes.

The first problem was a coil which started acting up just a week in. 35,000 miles later and I’ve spent a total of $4500 on problems (new heater core, radiator, head gasket, & more) and $1900 on routine maintenance (counting the initial fluids, etc.)

All in, for buying and repairing this one I’ve spent about the same as the prices I see online for trucks with similar features and mileage. Would I buy it again? If it’s for a daily driver I would have preferred to spend the ~$5k up front to avoid downtime at the shop.

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