10 Ways to Spot a Flood-damaged Car

Rely on Expert Eyes
Of course you'll want a mechanic to check it out, too. ljubaphoto/E+/Getty Images

Even a used car is an investment, and you don't want to buy a damaged car that will cost you tons of money in the long run. If after your own inspection you still aren't sure the car is completely dry, hire an expert.

A good mechanic will know where to look for signs of flood damage. That's especially true of places you may not know how to examine, such as the alternator, certain wiring mechanisms and pumps.

The mechanic should also take the wheels off and inspect the brakes and wheel components, which can carry tell-tale remnants of a flood history, such as silt and mud.

For more great information, check out the links below.

Last editorial update on Oct 16, 2018 04:17:40 pm.

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  • Donnelly. Grace. "Hurricane Irma and Harvey Damaged 1 Million Cars. What Happens Now?" Fortune. Sept. 20, 2017. (Sept. 21, 2018) http://fortune.com/2017/09/20/hurricane-irma-harvey-damaged-cars/
  • Fix, Lauren. "Hurricane sufferers victimized by illegal car sellingscam." Family Car Parts. (Sept. 21, 2018) http://www.familycar.com/nextcar/flooddamagedcars.htm
  • Insurance Information Institute. "Flood-Damaged Cars from Hurricane Katrina May Show up on a Used Car Lot Near You." March 2, 2006. (Sept. 21, 2018) http://www.iii.org/media/updates/archive/press.751580/index.html
  • Montoya, Ronald. "How To Avoid Buying a Flood-Damaged Car." Edmunds, Inc. Aug. 31, 2017. (Sept. 21, 2018) http://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/how-to-avoid-buying-a-flood-damaged-car.html
  • National Insurance Crime Bureau. "VINCheck." (Sept. 21, 2018) https://www.nicb.org/theft_and_fraud_awareness/vincheck/vincheck
  • Progressive. "Spotting Flood Damage." (Sept. 21, 2018) http://www.progressive.com/vehicle-resources/car-flood-damage.aspx
  • Samarin, Vlad. "How to inspect a car body when buying a used car - illustrated guide." Samarins. Dec. 2, 2013. (Sept. 21, 2018) http://www.samarins.com/check/bodycond.html#flood


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