Old Gas

I have a 1993 Grand Am that has been sitting for 2 years with a half tank of gas. The car will run on starting fluid but that’s all. Is there anything I can add to the old gas to make it burn? If not, what do I do with 9 gallons of old gas?

Do you know that that’s the issue? If the gas is only 2 years old, it would be on my list of suspects, but not near the top. You need to confirm that there’s fuel pressure first. I’ve found it not at all uncommon for cars that sit for a while to have the fuel pumps quit working, especially if there’s a lot of empty space in the tank. Fuel filters and lines can rust and corrode internally, as well. Can you hear the fuel pump running when you switch the key to “run”? You might need to go back by the tank and have an assistant turn the key. If you don’t hear anything, check the fuse and relay and if that doesn’t fix it, plan on a new pump.

If the pump is making noise, try carefully pressing down on the schraeder valve on the fuel rail. Gas should squirt out fairly vigorously. If it doesn’t or if it just dribbles out, try changing the fuel filter and visually inspecting the fuel lines. If this doesn’t address the issue, plan on a new fuel pump. If you do get a squirt of gas, ideally you should hook it up to a fuel pressure tester to confirm that there is indeed enough consistent pressure, but at that point I’d be comfortable saying that fuel pressure is likely not the issue and would start looking at the gas. It is possible that filling up the rest of the tank with fresh gas will get the mixture fresh enough that your car will run, but it’s a bit of a gamble with gas prices these days and plus the added hassle of having that much more gas to drain and dispose of.

If you fill it up with fresh gas it will mix with the old gas and that should be fine.

HOWEVER…Are you sure the engine is even getting gas?? Car sitting for a couple of years the filter or injectors could be completely clogged. I think you have more problems then just bad gas.

Thanks for the info. I’ll check and let you know.