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Beware of Water and Flood Damaged Vehicles



Something that can be frustrating for both buyers and inspectors is a vehicle with flood or water damage.

There a many unknowns when you start inspecting a car and you notice heavy moisture in places that aren’t common or normal.

How long was the vehicle wet? How submerged was it? What kind of water? Fresh water or salt water? Salt water can be especially damaging.

The reason these questions are so important, is because not only can you get heavy rust issues, you can also start seeing problems with things like the electrical system, engine, transmission and cooling system.

Unless some big effort has been put in on repairs, you can definitely expect problems in the future.

Also, any time a car has been subjected to heavy moisture or flooding, this vehicle very much deserves to be sold well below market value. It would be completely foolish and unfair to put an abundance of money into a possible flood damaged vehicle.

Unfortunately, Thousands of damaged & destroyed cars due to water damage or flood don’t end up junked, but rather quietly and secretly resold to an unsuspecting buyer that later gets to flip the bill on some major repairs.

In this ‘05 Mustang GT you see below, there were many signs of water damage and flooding.

There is rust formation on the lower interior hardware including seat tracks, as well as dirt inside the glove box.

The underside and interior of this vehicle shows signs of major rust and some in areas that are not common.

The cooling system is not building pressure properly and both the floors and the seat belts are damp.

Another major red flag for this vehicle is that upon hooking the computer up, the monitors were incomplete. 

This is a sign that the computer has been reset. The inspector could see no current or pending codes and all history has been erased.

All of the issues mentioned here above were not disclosed by the seller and he had every intention of selling this damaged car just the way it is, at a high price, to an innocent and unsuspecting buyer. Thankfully, the party interested in buying this car was smart enough to have a thorough inspection done by a professional. As a result, the headache of buying a damaged vehicle was avoided, the costly and extensive repairs that would have come with the purchase were averted, and his down payment was canceled. ALWAYS get a Used Vehicle INSPECTED!