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Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: June 22nd, 2013, 2:15 pm
by Ricardo
Hi, just looking for some advice from people who know - apologies for the simpleton question and for not looking after the thing in the first place!

I have a 16v integrale which has been "in the garage" for about 14yrs. It's only done 65,000m and up to 5 years ago I started it and warmed thoroughly every few weeks. But its not been started (or turned) since then. I am about to try to get it fired up and wondered if anyone had any advice?

The facts are:

1) I have looked through the spark plug holes and the bores shine so no rust, piston tops are black carbon. From what I can see of the valve lips, the top of these also shine.

2) About 7yrs ago I fitted new fuel filter, air filter (K&N), oil filter and Mobil 1. So the oil has done very little from a wear stand point, but will obviously be full of moisture. Also fitted new plugs.

3) Plugs are all black (no rust).

4) Battery is dead (which is a shame, as I fitted it new 7yrs ago!).

I am thinking:

a) Mist bores with oil through spark plug hole and leave to soak
b) With plugs out attempt to turn engine by hand, then assuming it turns:
c) Check all pipes and connections
d) Check levels, use fresh fuel and battery then try starting, if it starts:
e) Add flush to water system and flush to oil, get it warm then replace oil filter plus oil and water

Any advice appreciated.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: June 22nd, 2013, 2:47 pm
by Guy Croft


Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: June 22nd, 2013, 4:19 pm
by samo
I have a little bit of experience with the integrale engines and I have to say that anything else than a strip and rebuild is asking for trouble... even if you get it running for a few days you will probably regret it a little later on.

Don't forget that a rebuild where you re-use 95% of the parts isn't that expensive. But when your 14 year old cam belt, balance shaft belt, poly-V aux belt, water pump, oil pump or anything else that is running on bearings will fail IT WILL get a lot more expensive. For instance keep in mind that EACH exhaust valve costs about 40-50€ and you have 8 to ruin if anything breaks.... not to mention the rest of the engine that you can ruin!

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: June 22nd, 2013, 4:47 pm
by Ricardo
I was planning on changing all the belts and associated external tensioners etc the belts look OK, no cracks etc but I wouldn't trust them other than to warm the engine up.

But I'll re-phrase the question/s...

1) Given that I have changed the clutch before, is it possible to lift the 16v engine out the top? - if I remove the diffs and gearbox from underneath, maybe turbo and rad too?

2) How many hours do you reckon for removal, strip, re-build and re-install?

3) Any idea of what consumables I am likely to need, I assume all gaskets as a minimum?

4) Are the water pump, oil pump, alternator and power steering pumps serviceable?

I stopped turning it over because a Ferrari ended up sitting next to it for a few years, a single conrod and piston in that was 800€ ... so I know what you mean, but I am poor(er) now! So cost and time are issues.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: June 26th, 2013, 5:50 am
by arguti
I would be interested in the broad coatings involved as I have my Alfa155 Q4 in the Same state.

are there any specific parts which are no longer available so that I know what to hunt for?

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 13th, 2013, 11:10 pm
by rossocorsa
I have to agree with GC a full strip down would be wise, given the amount of time that it has been unused all the seals in the engine will be at risk of failure, certainly the belts and associated bearings will need replacing plus the water pump. I would imagine power steering and alternator will probably be ok but worth inspecting them.
No experience of removing Integrale engines but certainly they are awkward and a very tight fit.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 14th, 2013, 7:28 pm
by Will01
Be very careful with what you think looks ok when talking about belts. Believe me when I say that even if a belt looks ok it can still fail.
Its interesting as last year I was given a couple of belts off engines that had been crated up from the factory, they were only 5years old, but because they had been sat tensioned in the same point all that time they were no good!
The rubber compounds and other compounds in belts have a shelf life, belts have a shelf life and a useful engine life. Let me give you an example, a belt has been on an engine for a long time, the rubber is beyond its best. Overtime the rubber has got harder meaning it is less flexible. Now the engine is turned over (probably hard to turn over because it hasn't in so long)and the belt flexes, unfortunately the old rubber breaks the tensile member in the belt because it is not able to flex properly and then you have a snapped belt.
Personally I wouldn't risk it, belts are cheap enough especially when you see how much the engines are worth if you have to repair.

I would agree with GC and give it a complete strip and rebuild, it will do the engine a new kiss of life. If you look after it, it will look after you.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 18th, 2013, 6:34 am
by TS131Volumex
Read and understood . M .

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 19th, 2013, 3:57 pm
by Abarthnorway - Remi L
Regarding engine removal it can be taken out both up and down(Integrale). Easiest way is to remove complete with gearbox in my opinion. Estimate 1 days work for removal, and a couple of days the other way....its a tight fit:-)

Regarding rebuild time it all depends on the conditition of the engine, and of course on how YOU want to define the level of "rebuild". "Rebuild" has a different meaning to everyone....

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 24th, 2013, 9:11 pm
by Ricardo
Many thanks for all the good advice.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 26th, 2013, 8:02 pm
by Ricardo
Any idea what kind of weight the engine, gearbox, turbo and ancillaries are? I'm wondering if a 550kg engine stand is ok re: iron block etc


Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 26th, 2013, 9:31 pm
by Guy Croft
easily strong enough, probably about 220kg


Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: July 30th, 2013, 11:18 pm
by Ricardo
To Abarthnorway - Remi L

Many thanks for the info, I have been looking at the Lancia workshop manual which describes removal from underneath (lifting the car off it) and wondered if you had any more hints on getting it out of the top? I am wondering if its possible with the front diff attached? as I can't see how the prop flange gets past the floor without the turbo being an issue on the other side. I also assume I would need to remove the ABS unit?

Also, if pulling out the top, would the wishbones stay in place? or do they need removing to gain access to the engine mounts?

I am thinking removing the turbo and exhaust manifold would help considerably, which is a relatively easy job and loosing the front diff isn't the end of the world if it has to be done (I find getting it back on is the back breaker!).

Any advice would be appreciated!

Thanks Guy, I am surprised the block is that light.

Re: Engine not turned over in 5yrs+ any advice?

Posted: December 11th, 2013, 3:57 am
by tommilton
I have read this stream with amusement - granted I have never even seen an Integrale in real life- but from the pics that engine looks like a thing of beauty - and it sounds rare and full of potential. So maybe If I had a 16 valve unit like that I might be more respectful, even paranoid about it... but I am playing with Spiders.

I have 2 road cars - an '80 and an '81 and 2 parts cars, all unmodified. My first one, the '81, was a car that I got from a friend who had owned it for years and was not capable of doing what was required to get it back into safe running condition. Consequently, the car had not run for approx. 10 years. I had never worked on one of these Fiats so it was all new to me. All my previous experience had been on old English cars in the early 70s when I built up a Cooper S, a few Triumphs, Jags and all sorts of other similar stuff. I had always admired the little Fiats but never got near one.

I started by getting a workshop manual, owners manual, an excellent wiring diagram and a fuel injection diagnostics manual. After that, I got all the electricals working, had the alternator rebuilt, blew out all the old gas, drained and cleaned out the gas tank, went over the brakes, drained the oil, replaced it with cheap 10W30, made sure I had coolant etc. Next I disconnected the ignition and cranked the engine over until I could see that oil was circulating everywhere... then put some gas in the tank, reconnected the ignition and fuel pump and started it. It was running rough (fuel injection was not working well at first) and eventually got it going on 4 cylinders (and was cautious to never revved it much over 2000 rpm) THEN SHUT IT DOWN. Next changed the timing belt, put 1/2 pint of transmission fluid in the cheap oil and started it again and ran for 1/2 hr at idle. Shut down again, drained out the oil mixture and replaced with good quality oil and new filter, adjusted the tappets and started driving it gently. The trans fluid/oil mix cleaned out the engine such that the new oil looks so clear on the dipstick you have to look for it. Now after using it for a couple of thousand km the engine has got happy and runs really well. I also replaced all the front end rubber bushings and the engine mounts, which had collapsed over time.

Now I am working on the '80 and have been reading all the great stuff on this blog and large sections of Guy's fabulous workshop manual (If you like Lampredi engines - or just want to have a great read about improving engine performance this is a must read!) ... and came to the realization that with the first engine I was very lucky it all worked out so well. The engine is coming out of the '80 for a strip-down before it ever sees any fuel + spark... and that would be my advice to anyone else tempted to do what I did the first time. When I get it apart, if I find useful stuff I will provide photos of what I find for the curious. This will take a fund project and make it even more interesting.