Just bought an Amphicar, need advice

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New Member
Hi all,

So I bought an Amphicar last week from an estate sale. The car has been fully restored but was parked inside roughly 4-5 years ago and hasn't moved or been started since.

The building it was stored in was heated and dry, so there are no mold problems or humidity problems, and the car was stored with the doors open slightly to keep the door seals in good shape.

So far all I've done is aired up the tires- they seem to be holding with no flat spots- and I'm buying a new battery today.

My plan is to drain the gas tank(and re-fill with ethanol free gas), change the fuel filter(anyone tell me where it's located?), change the oil/filter, check the coolant condition, and....?

I'd love any advice on further things it would be wise to do before attempting to re-start and then drive the car.



Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
Welcome to the Amphicar world and the forums.

Sounds like you are doing most of the right things. Good news is that the Amphi engine is about as sophisticated as an old tractor but equally durable.

You might want to remove the spark plugs and spary a bit of fogging oil or WD40 into the cylinders. Try turning it over by hand, or at least with the distributor wire off before going live. The only fuel filter may be the one built into shut off valve at bottom of tank. It is basically just a screen. I would NOT remove this as it is almost certainly going to leak after you reassemble it. There may be an aftermarket in-line filter on one of the fuel lines from the tank (not a bad idea to add one of those).

Make sure to check the brakes before you go zooming down the road.

Make certain that both transmissions have oil in them before you get under way.

If you do try to put her in the water remember to PUT THE BILGE PLUG IN FIRST! :)


Feel free to contact me at steve.reich at sbcglobal.net and provide a phone number. I would be happy to walk you through your first trip.


Amphicar Expert
Back in Cold Ontario,
The dirt in the oil in the engine and trany will have settled into a nice BLACK SLUDGE. there is really no way to get this all out without taking pans off. At least change the oils. Then change them again after driven for a bit.photo below is after cleaning out the sludge,you can still see the level it was at..trans, inside 002.jpg

Midwest Amphicar

Worlds Largest Amphicar Destination
Regardless if ethanol free (LOL) Add stabil or similiar make sure label does include ethanol stabilizers. I also add a couple of shots of 2 cycle oil. "Motors" industry trade magazine had an article about ethanol and the delivery systems in place. Odds are good having some amount of ethanol in your fuel.


New Member
Wow, thanks for the responses. I will definitely turn the motor by hand and fog the cylinders.

I've been crazy busy at work, but will update this thread with pics and a other info once I get some time. For now the car is just sitting lonely in it's storage space.


New Member
Hey gang, I finally got time to pull the Amphicar out of storage and get it to a mechanic. Unfortunately I won't have time to wrench on it myself but hopefully it will be running by early next week. It does run, but needs a new fuel pump(which is in the mail, thanks to Gordon Imports).

Here are some pics just after it was towed out of 5 years of storage.

Any idea what it might cost to get the door panels fixed? The vinyl is in good shape, but the cardboard(or whatever it is) underneath is badly bowed/warped in some spots. Not a deal breaker but I would like to get them fixed- hopefully for much less than the $500+ Gordon Imports wants for a new door panel.









New Member
Wow, those pics came out much bigger than I thought. If they're too big please delete and I'll re-size them. Thanks


Wow. Very clean machine. Nice set of wheels/props you have there.
Pull the clips off the window and door cranks (careful not to lose the springs and washers), and gently pull the door panel off . Seperate the vinyl from the old board and use it as a partern on some new fibreboard. Wrap it in the old vinyl, install your clips and you'll have a straight door panel ready for installation.
Looks nice...
I actually like the black painted bumperettes, it gives it a different look.
I may have to try that with mine, when I get to that point. :)


Amphicar Expert
Looks to me like some one redid the leatherette on the seat bottoms but not the rest of the car.It makes a good car look bad. I could probable never match the red they used so I would recomend a new interior kit someday.
A full kit runs about $1300.00 for everything.
you get all 6 panels with heat shink white top lines, great pouches. and are 100% ready, just snap on. rear back rest is also just drop in ready,(you can have a Amphicar crest added for $50.) the seat bootms are held in place with hog rings and front back rests slide over and staple at bottom out of sight.
You are also missing the front floor humps.I have a kit for these $20 that streched into place and look great.
Radio deleats in pic are original. I have reproduced these and are aval for $30.
I just added a spot in the lovers classified listing all the parts I have in Florida this winter.
Remember there is more than 1 supplyer of amphicar parts(and REPAIRS)
FL> NUMBER IS 352 301 7022