Why Should You Not Buy a Flood-damaged Car?

by IndianAuto Team | 16/11/2018
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If flooded, the car will be damaged badly. If the water level is higher than car’s capo, this car will be considered as scrap.

After flood season, it is usual to spot a bunch of “flood-damaged autos” in the used car market. These vehicles often endure lots of electrical as well as mechanical problems. If a car’s hood is soaked in water, its engine and inlet will be filled with water, too. The water might enter the cylinders through the cavity or the exhaust system and stay there. Even if the car is brought to the garage and water is removed from the cylinder, the engine, as well as other car parts, can still be affected by the flood. Below are car damages caused by waterflood.

a black auto in a flooded road

Flood water damages auto badly

1. Electric System Malfunction

After being flooded, both electrical and electronics parts of the car might be damaged badly. Moisture can lead to a short circuit in the electrical system, which results in malfunction of critical parts, including Electrical Control Unit (ECU), brake lights, headlights, turn signals, air-conditioner, windows, locks and seats, audio, video systems, fuses, anti-lock brake system and so on. Make sure the engine is safe and these electric components are dried out before turning on for review. If you identify any electrical trouble, have your car checked by a mechanic.

2. Engine Damage

When water enters engine parts like air intake or cylinders, the piston might try to compress it. Because water cannot be compressed, it will break piston rods and lead to engine stalling. To know whether water has been in the engine, check for milky oil as well as water droplets in the oil dipstick.

3. Mold and Odour

Wet, stained and moldy carpet or upholstery with musty odour are things you have to suffer if driving a flooded car. In some cases, flood-damaged autos can cause health issues to drivers and passengers. After submerging in floodwater, the interior of the car will develop mold, mildew and odour which result in respiratory ailments such as asthma or allergies.

Mold inside a car

Mold and odour will appear sooner or later

4. Hard-to-Clear Debris and Mud

Floodwater leaves debris as well as sand on hard-to-see and also hard-to-clear areas in your car. These places include the engine compartment, brakes, wheels, under the hood and gaps between trunk panels.

5. Rusty Auto Parts

Though it takes months or even years to form, rust may weaken your car’s structure and affect parts like brake and stick shifts. Water cause rust in areas that normally do not get wet like the brake pedal or sometimes, the trunk latch. Furthermore, the seatbelt locks or crevices around seatbelts will be full of grit.

rusted car frame

Rust forms easier in flooded cars

6. Slippery Brakes

After being soaked in flood water, car brakes are slippery due to the lack of friction between the pads and the wet rotors of the brake. If the brake rotors are too wet, the brake pads can not grip them efficiently. Though car brakes are quite protected, they still become exposed to wet roads, especially if your car is flooded.

7. Contaminated Liquid

The transmission, power steering, brake fluid and coolant reservoirs of the car will become corroded due to lack of lubrication when contacting with flood water. Furthermore, if water is blended with gasoline and gets into fuel injectors or spark plugs, the car engine will be damaged seriously.

The longer the car remains submerged, the greater the damage is. If the car has been soaked in salt water instead of fresh water, the corrosion will occur much more aggressively. If the submersion was deep, then even if there aren't electrical problems now, there could be dangerous down the road. In all circumstances, these soaked automobiles are dangerous to drive, and the results may even be fatal. Therefore, whether the car is new or old, if it is dipped in flood water, it is advisable to bring your car to the nearest garage or service station for checking. Finally, to avoid all these above troubles, never buy a flooded car.

Read more tips and guides from IndianAuto.com

How To Know If A Used Car Is Flood-Damaged?

Flood Driving Safety Tips On Indian Roads

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