I have a 2001 Mercury Sable LS (24 valve DOHC). It has been setting 1 year and a half. It would run a 1 year and a half a ago. However, now, it acts like it is not getting fuel. I have checked the fuel shut-off valve. Any suggestions? Thanks!

Asked by Mar 31, 2015 at 05:11 PM about the 2001 Mercury Sable LS Premium

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2001 Mercury Sable LS (24-valve DOHC). It has been setting for 1 yr and a half. It ran before. Now it acts like it is not getting fuel and will not start.

14 Answers


Possibly water in gas tank. That happens especially if it was parked near-empty. Drain tank, fresh gas, and HEET or Sea-Foam. Have a suspicion it will run fine. Wouldn't hurt to pull all spark plugs and squirt a small amount of light motor oil in cylinders. http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/sea-foam-motor-treatment-for-gas-and-diesel-engines-16-fl.-oz.-sf16/6410004-P


It does crank over, right? not battery? A battery will go bad from non-use in 18 months. Or does it turn over and try?

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Battery is NOT issue. It cranks & cranks.


Ok then, if you have spark, the timing won't have changed sitting, so if you do have spark then back to fuel..... and water. And by spark I mean ignition to plugs, not that it cranks over.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

You should keep in mind that overtime gasoline breaks down and looses it's flammability properties, and can even gum up everything it sits in, causing a varnish like sticky coating, especially in smaller areas like fuel injectors. Have you tried spraying some starting fluid into the fresh air intake to see if the engine will fire up? Give it a try if you have not already, but use it sparingly and be careful not to spray it directly onto any sensor wires (the air flow sensor that may be inside the intake air tube. If it starts but won't stay running after a couple of tries, you may have to change out any fuel in the tank with new.

Added Heet to the tank. Also bought starter fluid and sprayed into the cold air intake. I got it to start three separate times after spraying the starter fluid but can't keep it running. Just dies. Also, notice dark smoke from exhaust. May have added too much heet. It only had a 1/4 of tank of gas.


Just to be clear, the product HEET used to be an additive for diesel fuel that keeps it from getting to thick to flow or to keep it from freezing in cold temperatures, and it came in a blue can if I remember correctly. Is that what you used? I would never put any diesel additives in any gasoline product, only diesel. The black smoke could be from any number of causes if the car sat that long, but the fact that it ran off the starting fluid shows it does run, so your problem comes back to the FUEL/SPARK equation.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

HEET now (I remember what you're talking about JP) has a product in a yellow and a red bottle for automotive applications, gasoline . Click this and you will be able to read labels. There is yet another, injector cleaner with alcohol and without

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

Trivia...from the 70's..sure is some weird stuff on eBay

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@ FordNut - Thanks. The last I knew (dating myself?) HEET was a round blue & white Metal can with a screw on cap and was as I said for diesel anti-gelling. I didn't even realize they made gasoline products. I have used and like the SeaFoam. Did you ever run Marvel Mystery Oil thru anything? I did on an old Chevy I had and boy was that a big mistake! Ate the valve seals right out! I guess it cleaned BETTER than clean!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

No, JP I haven't. I'm not saying these products are not good, just never had a reason to use/try them. If it works, don't fix it I go by. It's the Fix-A-Blown-Head-gasket-In-A-Can crap that I really think is a rip-off, the labels say things that lead people that don't know cars, perfectly intelligent folks that cars are just not what they know, and going by the label think this stuff from a bottle will actually permanently seal a blown head gasket. I don't know how they get away with the claims they make.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

On my 1976 Ford F250 I use 50W motor oil in the transmission and transfer case. Have for 20 years and when it's cold, like 15 - 20° it shifts better and never a problem ..other than it's getting hard to find it.


I agree FordNut! I can't believe how many people fall for some of the crap they market these days for cars. I am so tired of hearing how many people have fallen for the bull especially with all the "Stop Leak" crap they market for Head gaskets radiator Leaks, Motor oil Leaks and Transmission Leaks. Interesting fact about your F250 tranny & transfer case fluid!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

have you checked for fuel pressure at the fuel rail there is a black cap with a scrader valve cycle the key then push the scrader valve there should be a blast of fuel come out not a lot but can get messy can you hear the fuel pump run in the fuel tank have someone turn on the key while you are in the back by the fuel pump if you dont hear anything then there is your answer

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