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704-201-7334 | 100 Center Ln Huntersville, NC 28078

How to Identify a Flood Damaged Vehicle

How to Identify a Flood Damaged Vehicle

It is important for those considering the purchase of a used vehicle to be car care aware and check for signs of water intrusion or contamination, says the non-profit Car Care Council.

"Purchasing a used vehicle and later learning it has been flood damaged can be very problematic and lead to costly issues down the road. Worst yet, these vehicles can be unhealthy to occupy because of mold and bacteria growing in the carpet and ventilation system," said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council.

The Car Care Council and the Car Care Professionals Network (CCPN), a network of professional automotive service providers, say it all comes down to how much water the vehicle took in and where it can be reached and together recommend taking the following steps to determine if a vehicle has been flood damaged:

  • Take the sniff test. Close all the windows and doors and let the car sit for about five minutes then crack open a door and sniff. Mildew and mold have very distinctive smells and it doesn't take long for that smell to present itself.
  • Try the touch test. Get some paper towels and press them against the low spots in the carpet. The paper towels will draw the moisture out and reveal if the carpet is wet under the surface. Some carpets can be several inches thick to insulate from heat and sound. If the paper towel becomes wet it could mean water has gotten into the car.
  • Investigate the interior. Look under the seats and dash for corrosion and rust and look for exposed metal that is untreated. There are metal springs under the front seats that are usually not painted. If they are rusted that is a sign the interior has been wet. Look for mud and debris in places it does not belong.
  • Inspect the instrument panel. Turn on the key and perform a bulb test. Make sure every bulb lights up. If a system has an issue, removing the warning bulb can hide it. Many times vehicles that have flooded have malfunctions in their anti-brake and air bag systems. Ensuring the light comes on and then goes out after the bulb test is an indicator that the system is on and has no active faults.
  • Take it to a professional. Let a service and repair technician inspect your vehicle. They can raise the car and look underneath to see if there is any mud, sticks or rocks in the suspension. A professional can check the oil in the differentials to make sure they contain no water in them. Spend a few dollars to have it looked over to give you peace of mind.

Source: Car Car Council


What Our Customers Are Saying

reviewiconFamily Vehicles
North Charlotte, NC

Bert & associates are awesome. I started servicing my BMW couple years back. They are now my default repair shop for all family vehicles. When service is required, it's expertly provided. Perhaps more important, when work is unnecessary or minimally resolved, they explain why, to quickly get me back on road. I always leave the shop feeling work is thorough with safety in mind. Clean shop, clear talk, trustworthy service...all at a fair price.

, 09/22/2020
I came in to get a car inspection and I was able to be seen immediately! Bert even gave me a great deal on the inspection since it was my first time. I will be back for all of my car needs!

, 08/28/2020

reviewiconHighly Recommended, Honest Business
Heating and Cooling Services, near Concord, NC

I was referred here by another mechanic to help out with my A/C. I told the owner, Bert Jones that I was getting rid of my car in the fall and did not want to spend a lot of money. I only wanted the A/C charged and a sealant put in hoping it would last the summer. I was very impressed that my wishes were respected and no one tried to sell me on a higher priced repair. Everyone was very friendly and I was very happy! About 6 weeks later I noticed that the A/C was not as cold and wanted to get it back in for another recharge. I had an opportunity to speak to Bert for a few minutes and he was awesome! I even left there with a no charge for the recharge! This is an honest business and I would highly highly recommend!

, 07/27/2020
Had a difficult electrical issue with my car, took it by auto specialists and they had it fixed the same day. Great mechanic shop.

, 05/07/2020
I was in Lowes Hardware the other day when I ran into a guy with an Auto Specialties t-shirt. Not wanting to waste his time I asked the gentleman if he had a few minutes to spare. Within a few minutes of speaking with him I was convinced he had a wealth of knowledge about my truck. On Monday I decided to take off work and drove down to Huntersville to see if he could help me with my truck. Within a few hours he called me and said my truck was fixed. I'm not big on reviews but I feel my experience was so good I needed to tell more people about this hidden gem.

, 05/07/2020

reviewicon

Great facility, great customer service. Have taken my cars here for the past few years. Clean shop with friendly staff. Have gone to a few different places for auto inspection in the past, this place is where I am staying. Thank you gentlemen

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