Car sitting


My friend moved away from his family and recently came back after a year. He has an audi A4 from 2008. I have the same car except 2010. I told him that since it has been sitting for so long. He should probably change the air filter, fuel filter, drain the gas, do an oil change and flush the coolant and brake fluids. Is there anything else that he should do?

Check the age of the tires. 10 years is suggested replacement time.


I’d be a little more conservative. I’d get the oil changed, for sure. The battery may need to be replaced.

Has the fuel in the gas tank been sitting for a whole year? Friend might try some brand new gas in the tank, see if the engine will even start. Old fuel can be a problem.

Personally I wouldn’t be concerned with changing the coolant or brake fluid.


Thanks and yes the fuel is been sitting for a whole year

Change the oil, inflate the tires, recharge the battery.

The coolant is good for 5 years, replace if needed. The air filter and fuel filter are no dirtier than when he parked the car.

My cars sit for more than a year, nobody is going to sell me all that maintenance.


All good advice, inexpensive and worth doing once a year anyway but if he does nothing else I’d invest in several bottles of Chevron Techron fuel cleaner.

Any residual gas in the system has long since evaporated leaving behind a gummy or hard residue.

And depending on how it was stored, it may also need a cabin filter change and through interior cleanout to battle mold buildup.


I have seen car sit for far more than a year start up and run fine on the old gasI use very little two stroke mix, I only use it for my small snowblower and a string trimmer. I mix a gallon at a timand at the end of the fall or spring just drain i† back into th cad and don;r mix up another gallon until it is gone``e

We have a vehicle that was stored for 18 months. When put away, the gas tank was filled with fresh gasoline and a fuel stabilizer was added, and the battery was pulled and put on a battery tender. The car was not touched while in storage. After storage, it started and ran fine. Unless the fluids and filters are scheduled for replacement due to age or mileage on them, changing them is not needed.

One year, while the vehicle was stored, mice moved into the heating and air conditioning ducts and fan. I removed a mouse nest from the heater fan and cleaned and disinfected the ductwork. Fortunately, they did not damage any wiring. Hopefully, your friend will not have to contend with any critter issues. The mouse mess happened 10 years ago, and still, occasionally the faint odor of mouse urine can be detected when the heater/air conditioning fan is running.

In my experience, sitting for 1 year isn’t long enough to cause a no-start due to fuel degradation

If the car starts, then top the tank off with fresh gas and drive on. Sitting for one year should be of no further concern.

All the other items that you mention (oil change, coolant, brake fluids) are maintenance and should be considered independent of whether a car sits or not.

The air filter, oil, or oil filter did not get more dirty when they sat for a year. The coolant didn’t become anymore contaminated either.

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In a 4-cycle engine?


old gas is old gasm whether is is mixed with oil for a 2 cycle or not, as a matter of fact, 2 cycle imx is more likely to foul plugs that straight gas in a 4 cycle.

My point as that I don’t experience the old gas problems that people are continually warned about on this site in the time framepeople warn against.

Maybe our cooler climate preserves gasoline better. It ure makes batteries last longer.