The reservoirs with rainwater and the overflow of dams are fulfilling, particularly when the supply of water is short. But the problem is the floods and storms cause flood and water damage to individual’s properties such as cars.
If you are looking out for a second-hand car, there is a possibility of purchasing a water flood-damaged vehicle. The reason is that the water-damaged cars are difficult to identify like damaged when they get dry.
What does flood damage do to a car?
Here are the various types of car damages:
- Car airbags can get damaged. And sometimes they can open unexpectedly due to electrical system failure.
- The car components like brakes can get damaged.
- Catalytic converters and starter motors can get damaged.
- Overall damage to electronic and electrical systems.
The main mistake often people make is thinking that the only thing a car requires after getting flooded is good airing and time to dry off.
When you are buying a second-hand car and when the damage is not properly evident, you should know how to check for flood damage on a car to stop yourself from purchasing a car with possibly fatal defects. Purchasing a car is a commitment and a huge investment. Hence, there is nothing wrong with following the inspection process aggressively in order to stop you from purchasing a headache on the wheels.
How to spot a flood-damaged car:
1) Examine the full history of the car
Checking the complete history of the car allows you to get access to the car’s history and stop you from purchasing a car which has really been written-off because of flood damage.
2) Check if the electronically operated items are suffering
If the car has been inside the deep waters, then the electrics will show signals of suffering. Examine all the car lights and you can still come across a visible water line to imply flooding. Also, make sure you check all other electric systems like windows, to ensure they work in the same way as they should.
Another practical way to know how to check the water in a car is to turn on the heating system. When the heating system is switched on, the trapped water inside the ventilation and heating system often results in excess condensation. And if the windows begin steaming up, begin to ask questions.
3) Check for corrosion or rust below the bonnet
Pop the hood and look under the bonnet without being shy. Also, check for water where the water should not present. If possible, take the support of a mechanic so that the mechanic can examine the complicated and more crucial parts such as a starter motor.
4) Check if the car rust is excessive
When you are buying a used car, you must be careful of the rust. The reason is used cars may contain a little rust; however, it must match up with the car mileage. If the car rust is excessive and is not consistent with the car age, then this could be a warning sign of water damage. Examine things such as unpainted metal, heads of exposed screws, and other potentially rusty spots like doors, beneath the dashboard, and beneath the boot where water normally would not be normally present.
5) Check if any parts are loose
If there are any loose bits and missing parts, then you need to ask why. Also, check whether the seat mounting screws have been removed before. The seat mounting screws would have been removed when removing the seats in order to dry the wet carpets. But, this is not usual maintenance, therefore don’t be fooled.
Furthermore, check if the rubber drain plugs below the car are removed or replaced before. If yes, then it is an indication of floodwater drainage.
6) Sniff the car for musty and damp smells.
There are some areas in the car that never completely dry off from being aired. These are the areas you should be checking. Just like a crime scene investigator who is searching for evidence, examine the carpets. Sniff, tap, and flip. Feel your way on all sides of the car, sniffing around for musty and damp smells and to identify any damp spots.
Obviously, bringing a mechanic for doing the car check would be easy. However, if the mechanic is unavailable or if having a mechanic is too expensive, then knowing how to spot flood-damaged cars and what to search for to ask the correct questions is a better backup plan. If you ask the right questions and come across too many red flags, then just walking away can be the safer choice.
If the car is water damaged, make sure you ask for any evidence that the required car water damage repair work has been carried out on the vehicle. Purchasing a flood-damaged car that’s had vital components not replaced could be like purchasing a ticking time bomb of dangerous and even expensive problems.
Not every car can get damaged by the storm, but that doesn’t mean you should leave things to chance with your car. Always ensure that you verify if your water damage car insurance does cover your car for unfortunate incidents like floods and storms.