Rejuvinate garage stored '02 Mazda

mazda
mazda5

#1

To conserve cash I would like to do some easy things at home and then let a mechanic do the more complex tasks.



What tasks can be done at home and what must be done by a mechanic? You can answer one or the other set of questions.


#2

Need a little more information. How long has it been stored?

Brake fluid and coolant should be replaced every 2-3 years regardless of whether the vehicle is used or not.

I think the tires should be OK unless they are hopelessly flat-spotted, though some here will tell you not to drive on tires over 6 years old.

If the gasoline in the tank is several years old, it would be best to drain it. If that is difficult, siphon out all you can and mix fresh gas in with what is left.

If it has been parked for several years, you may want to shoot a bit of light oil into the cylinders and crank it for a few seconds with the spark plugs out to pump oil through it before starting it.

Whether any of this needs to be done by a mechanic depends on your auto maintenance skills and whether you have the tools to do the coolant and brake fluid. Those can be messy jobs.


#3

The Mazda has been parked in garage for 5 years without any prep for long storage. I am relying on a friend who is mechanical. I would like to give him a list of things he can do (can’t be screwed up) and leave the hard stuff for the mechanic. So I probably need a checklist. I couldn’t find one on the Internet even though I know there must be something out there.
Thanks for all the good advice.
My daughter lost her job in NYC and is moving in with me so that is why we are trying to conserve cash.


#4

I am not an expert on Mazdas, but if it were in my garage, I would:

Buy a new battery, 10 gallons of gas, and some Marvel Mystery Oil.
(I choose this oil because I am not sure how well your O2 sensor and catalytic converter might like other penetrating oils)

Siphon all the fuel you could get out of the tank.
Put in the new battery and the fresh fuel.
Remove the spark plugs and shoot a few drops of Marvel oil in each cylinder.
Check the oil to make sure it looks good (no evidence of water in it)

Disable the ignition and crank the engine over several times, about 5 seconds each time, with a minute between to let the starter cool, to pump oil through the engine. There will be old raw gas blowing out of the spark plug holes. No Smoking!! Check oil dipstick again.

Put spark plugs back in and start the car (hopefully). It may not start for a few seconds, until the old fuel in the fuel rail circulates back to the tank and you get fresh fuel up to the engine.

Warm up the car, then replace the motor oil, the coolant, and the brake fluid with proper fluids for your vehicle. If you live where it is humid, you may have bad rust on the rotors or in the calipers, so try out the brakes before you drive it more than a few feet. If the brakes don’t work, you have more work to do, but I expect that they will.

The tires will be flat-spoted. Drive it around for a few days before deciding if they will need to be replaced.

Good luck!