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Discussion Starter #1
My late brother bought my dad's 1985 S10 years ago and had it in the garage at his house. Then, my brother died four years ago. I inherited the house and the Blazer. I believe the Blazer would start when he died, but there were all sorts of things to take care of in terms of his estate. When I tried to start it again some months later, it wouldn't start. It would crank up with starter fluid for a few seconds, but wouldn't keep running. It become a secondary concern, but stayed garaged.

Now, I want to get it running again. I know I need to drain the gas and replace it with fresh gas, plus changing the oil and probably the coolant.

Are there any things specific to this model Blazer that I should keep in mind when trying to get gas to the engine? That seemed to be the issue that last time I messed with it.

I do know that because we used it to pull an aluminum-hull boat on a trailer, my brother had the transmission rebuilt with premium parts and spent about $3,000 on that job. He said he probably shouldn't have dropped that much into it, but at least I know that the rebuilt transmission has relatively few miles on it.
 

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Awww..you ain't got shit!
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Should be relatively straightforward. This model with the carbed engine is pretty easy to troubleshoot. I'm sure that the truck probably has bad gasoline since ethanol based fuel has a poor shelf life. The carburetor may be gummed up too because of that garbage. If that's the case (and even if it isn't), you might want to look into a Weber swap. It's easy, and it's a big upgrade for these older trucks. The carburetor on those really chokes the engine.

Good luck, there are a lot of good folks on here. Please keep us posted and drop some pix! I love early trucks like yours (and mine).
 

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94 4x4,01 Blazer
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sitting that long- full tune up - and punch the screens out of weep holes in the base of the dizzy- full lube job- hit e brake cables with pen oil- pull all for and lube brake mech with brake grease- agree on carb clean/rebuild or replace- drop the spare- pull lower filler hose off tank- and pump/siphon out the crapgas. while down there have someone turn the key and listen for the pump.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
One thing I'm not clear on with these carbureted S10s -- parts sources list both an old-style mechanical fuel pump and an electronic tank-mounted pump for this car.



How do I know what this one has?
 

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You should be able to hear it if it's electric. If it's mechanical, it should be mounted on the block. I had an '85 Blazer and it was mechanical.
 

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Mew Nember
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Yeah, start with the fuel pump. Mechanical is lower front corner, driver-side, of the block. Has 2 bolts holding it in. Has one hard line, and a couple rubber ones. If caked in grease, use something like generic oven cleaner with lye (about $2 a can at grocery store) and get a cheap brass wire brush or similar. Spray it, let it sit for 5 minutes, than rinse with garden hose water. Don't breath or get on skin. Oven cleaner is better than auto store bought degreaser and about 1/3 the price. It also foams up, and puts greased metal back to bare metal w/o a film.


The diaphragms rupture easily with age. Be SURE to change the oil too regardless. If planning to keep, splurge for synthetic.



Once unbolted, the pump comes out. There is also a solid piece of steel bar that acts like a solid lifter connecting the lobe to the pushrod on the plunger. Don't drop it, and make sure it gets cleaned. I add a bit of fresh oil to both ends upon reassembly. Will need to overcome spring pressure slightly to get bolts threaded on new pump. Be sure to inspect for leaks after.


While at it, hit all all avenues (it's cheap enough on these and good insurance when dealing with 30 year old parts) and do plugs, wires, cap, rotor, fuel filter, air filter, ignition coil (even if just to have a spare) and inspect all vacuum lines. A leak will cause it to run too lean. Rock Auto has things like plug wires for $3 to $30 range for example.


If it has an EGR (driver side, along side of the distributor on manifold) might be worth it to connect a vacuum gauge to a full-vacuum port and make sure it has good engine vacuum. If the egr is bad, it could cause a massive vacuum leak.


Those are just basic things to cover and cheap insurance. I know ignition coils on Fords from the same era would go from working correctly, to parking a car, and next day not starting having failed during the cool-down cycle, so might be worth dropping $15 and having a new one.



I just had to replace my mechanical fuel pump, but it was seeping out the weep hole and you could smell it. Was still running though.



If electric fuel pump, you may NOT hear it if it's failed, or the fuse is blown, etc..


I have a carb rebuild kit for these (unopened) that I doubt I'll ever use. If your carb is actually bad (gummed up, dirty, etc.) and you need a rebuild kit, PM me and I'll ship you mine.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the advice! Luckily, this car was pretty well-maintained by my father, who bought it new in 1985, and my late brother who bought it from my father in 1995. There's a folder of service records about 2 inches thick. My brother was an excellent mechanic, so it was well cared for. For some reason, my brother had removed the headlights before he passed away, but I found a box with the trim pieces and turn signals in it.

I checked the battery today, which will not take any charge, so I'll be getting a new one. I will change the oil even though what's in it looks pretty clean. I turned the engine by hand just a few degrees to feel that nothing was frozen.

I'd forgotten how many hoses these late carbureted engines had running everywhere. This one has an A.I.R. pump on the emissions sticker under the hood.
 

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Awww..you ain't got shit!
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One thing I'm not clear on with these carbureted S10s -- parts sources list both an old-style mechanical fuel pump and an electronic tank-mounted pump for this car.



How do I know what this one has?
Those things are wrong. If it is stock and it is carbureted, it has a mechanical pump. You can see it under the power steering pump. 85 2.5 trucks are fuel injected TBI which is probably where the confusion comes from.
 

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Awww..you ain't got shit!
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I'd forgotten how many hoses these late carbureted engines had running everywhere. This one has an A.I.R. pump on the emissions sticker under the hood.
Ah yes...the rat's nest of vacuum hoses... I tossed mine in the trash when I put the Holley on it back when it still had the 2.8 in it. What a massive improvement that was over stock in terms of performance and decluttering the engine.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I was trying to drain the gas tank today and ran into a problem. The hand pump I got has a hose about a half inch in diameter, and it seemed to run into something as I tried to feed it into the tank.

Does the 1985 Blazer have any kind of rollover valve in the tank? Do I need a smaller-diameter hose?
 

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Since you're going to drain it, why not just pull it and inspect it at the same time. You can take the filler off once it's out.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I did manage to drain it by siphoning today. Got 9 gallons of weird-smelling gas out. When I pulled the tube out I'd used as a siphon, I noticed some sediment/debris on it.



With a 34 year-old car, do you reach the point where you need to flush sediment and debris from the tank to keep it from clogging the fuel filter? The oldest operable car I've had was 25 years.

And that was the symptom a few months after my brother passed away. The car would crank with starter fluid, but wouldn't keep running, like it wasn't getting any gas.
 

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Awww..you ain't got shit!
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Ethanol gas is garbage. Maybe 6 months to a year till it is not burnable. If any of that **** was in the carburetor, you probably have issues there too. If your brother drove it infrequently that may have been the case. Sorry about your bro too. It’s hard to lose a family member. We’ve all been through that. If you’re up to it, order you a Weber. It’ll make the truck much more fun to drive. I did the Holley conversion. Lot more work and expense. Max can point out the merits of each. The Rochester 2SE is probably one of the WORST carburetors ever for a 2.8. You’ll be surprised how well it performs if you allow the **** motor to breathe. My truck was one of the slowest on earth....with the Holley? I was literally shocked at the difference in performance....I mean it was night and day. I’d never seen that truck run at that level. And honestly? Gas mileage was not affected once you got the springs dialed in for the secondaries. The stock springs are too soft for the 2.8. Put the long black spring in it. That worked for me.

Cleaning the tank out otherwise and blowing out the lines I think should be sufficient. I bet it fires right up!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have been reading about the carburetor improvements with the Webers.



As I think I posted at some point, the car would crank right up with starter fluid spray, but wouldn't stay running. I first want to get the major issues resolved, and then I may replace the carburetor.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
As the saga continues, I was looking for some car tools and found that my brother had stockpiled five brand-new 14oz cans of Freon 12 for this car.

Also, this Blazer only has 109k miles on it. My father kept all the service records back to when he bought the car, and it all tracks. My brother bought it as a secondary car in 1995, so it really didn't get driven that much for the next 19 years he owned it.
 

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Since you have the freon, I wouldn't waste it on a home installation. I'd make sure all of the AC components are up to snuff, and take it and the R-12 into a shop and have it done right.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Since you have the freon, I wouldn't waste it on a home installation. I'd make sure all of the AC components are up to snuff, and take it and the R-12 into a shop and have it done right.

Understood. My brother was very good at car AC, but that's one thing he never got around to teaching me. The pressure gauges are still hanging up in the garage.

I do get that if the system has leaked, it needs to be vacuumed and leak-tested before recharging.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Ooops. Misread the service records. It has 209k miles on it. My dad got it to 181k in ten years, and then it only got another 28k in the next 19 years.

Interesting that there were quite a few suspension parts repairs like knuckles, bushings, steering idler arm, although my dad drove it mostly around town.
 
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