Although used cars tend to be cheaper than new models, buying from an individual can be risky. Many buyers fail to research the history of a vehicle before making their purchase decision; if it has been in flood damage, there are warning signs to look for which could indicate what has caused it. Here is a list of warning signs that your used cars in sacramento have likely been involved in flooding and should be avoided by buyers:
- Water Damage
The most obvious sign that your car has suffered water damage is mold growth. Water usually starts with floor mats and carpets on panels submerged in water, but can spread to other panels when left standing for too long. Furthermore, when water sits on a vehicle for an extended period of time, it may lead to rusting even in hard-to-see places.
- Flooded Engine
A car’s engine can become water damaged if submerged in floodwater for an extended period. Not only should you check the engine bay, but also inspect the center console and tool chest as well. Flooded engines usually show signs of moisture such as blackened oil smudges from oil spills or dirt particles from floodwater – even if there are no visible rust spots. It is important to take extra precautions when inspecting these areas to prevent further harm to your car.
- Moldy Airbags
Although not submerged in flood waters, airbags can still be affected. Flooding often causes mold to grow on these bags which in turn leads to breathing issues for drivers and passengers alike.
- Water in Seats
Water in the seats can be hazardous to drivers in case they experience an accident while driving or any side effects from prolonged exposure. Water on the seats also has the potential to cause an electrical short within a car, so it’s essential to check for signs of possible damage before buying used and inspect it thoroughly prior to taking a test drive.
- Musty Interior
Another telltale sign of flooding may be the musty odor coming from inside a car. Mold can grow anywhere on a vehicle, so inspecting its interior for signs of mold problems. If mold has been growing for an extended period, it may be difficult to pinpoint its source; thus, inspect all panels that are difficult to access for signs.
- Damage to Vehicle Title
In most states, automobiles must be registered with their state through the DMV. If flood damage has damaged this title, replacement is likely necessary. Furthermore, if a car was flooded in a major flood like the Great Miami River or any other recent major event like it, steps should be taken to secure insurance coverage.