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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

I will be moving 1500 km away next month, and elected to drive. I have obtained a 1987, 9000 Turbo. It has ~275,000 km on it and cost me 700 dollars. I admit that this is not the most rational thing that I have ever done. I am looking for some information to increase the odds of me not feeling like an idiot 1200 km from home. I also believe that this vehicle deserves respect (it's older than me) and would like to at least maintain its condition, if not improve it. Thank you in advance, and I'm sorry that this is rather long.

The vehicle has what I believe to be a mostly complete service history (it seems to have some gaps in the mid 90s, and there is nothing after 2011). It is on 16" alloys, and does not have its spare wheel. Its safety inspection runs out in July. It has some rust patches, which are particularly serious on the bottoms of the doors.
Land vehicle Vehicle Car Alloy wheel Tire

In the next 3-4 weeks I know that I must do the following:
-Replace the brake pads.
-Get the areas that have been rusted through patched up.
-Have my garage give it a thorough going over for obvious potential problems.
-Renew the safety inspection.

My garage will catch any obvious mechanical issues (fluid, suspension, brakes etc), but what non-obvious things I should ask them to look for? I did the preliminary checks that I could based on information found online, such as checking for blue smoke from the Turbo and leakage around the head gasket.

I have noticed that there is a sound like air leaking when I turn the wheel more than a little bit. It doesn't sound like something is broken, but it is disconcerting. Is this normal?

I have yet to see the EDU work. I asked the previous owner about it via email and this was his response:
"The edu works intermittently... It's a light bulb issue with the right sunlight on dash u can press button and watch it change.
But it does work normally every once in a while."
If I understand him right it's some kind of sensor issue. Which sensor might that be, and is there anything that I can do about it?

It rained today, and when I lifted the back hatch I noticed that there was quite a lot of water pooling at the bottom of the slope on either side of the trunk (I'm talking about the edge of the seal, where the hatch meets the car when it is closed). Is this a significant rust hazard? Is there anything I can do to prevent it? Somebody also told me to remove the plastic rims on the wheel arches because they tend to collect water. Is there any value in doing so?

Beyond that, any advice on maintaining or improving the car's condition would be appreciated. I regret that I am not wealthy enough to give this car the restoration that it deserves, but I want to do my best for it.


(Note that I cannot drive the car again until the DMV opens on Tuesday. Stupid long weekend.)


285 Posts
Get a tune up. Plugs, wires, distributor cap, and rotor.

EDU is backlit with light bulbs. May want to start by replacing them.

Have your mechanic check condition of the battery and charging system.

Sniff carefully for the sweet smell of coolant and listen for the squeaking of a failing ventilation fan. If either is bad, replace both.

The wide wheel arches can collect water and be trouble, but regular arches are fine. Removing them likely wouldn't be easy anyway (assuming the fenders have rust to match) and would only make the rust situation worse.

If you take off the door panels and look inside the doors, there are water drains at the bottom. Yours are clogged with dirt and rust. Try cleaning with a shop vac. Or run water into the door bottom while using a small screwdriver to clear the obstructions from the drains.

Get a spare wheel/tire!

Sent from App
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