I have posted a question on meta asking to lower standards for re-opening questions on smaller SE sites, and wish to provide a link here because the question was generated from the frustration I feel towards being unable to re-open older questions here on Programmers, even after significant edits.
Please visit the question and vote to support if you agree.
To summarize, currently users get a single re-open vote for the lifetime of a question, and that re-open vote will expire in 4 days. This 4-day limit can be extended if someone else votes to re-open within that 4 days, however this only resets the 4-day timer and once it expires, all votes expire at a rate of 1-per-day.
I've made a few suggestions in the MSO question that would make it easier for smaller SE communities to reopen their questions, although the one I'd like to see implemented the most would be to refund re-open votes if they don't actually get used, so users can participate in other re-open attempts at a later date if the question gets more attention.
Just a FYI, I have been part of this site since beta and do not ever remember seeing an older question get re-opened by the community. I have seen a handful of newer questions get re-opened by getting the 5 votes needed, however I have never seen an older one get re-opened without moderator intervention.