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Water Flooded Vehicles: What You Need To Know

Flooded vehicles in USA

Torrential rains can damage entire cities and destroy infrastructure but also lead to great problems in cars.

Many of these will be written off and scrapped, but some owners may be able to keep their cars on the road and others will try to sell them through unethical techniques.

Water can damage mechanical equipment - it can destroy the engine and transmission, as well as electrical systems. This can affect the reliability of the car's airbags, braking capability and safety overall.

Salt water is even more likely to cause fatal damage to the chassis because metal and water lead to rust. Often, these cars are auctioned and some dealers in UAE purchase them and try to hide the faults instead of repairing them properly. They do this because the cost of repair can be extremely high.

What to look out for when buying a flooded car in Dubai

Key safety components such as steering and brakes need to be checked thoroughly, and all cooling and ventilation systems must be checked for debris. All fluids including gear oil and engine oil will likely need to be drained and replaced to make sure there is no contamination entering the components.

Petrol engines usually need to be hand-turned with the spark plugs removed to drain fluid from the cylinder chambers but diesel blocks require more complex solutions. If you are buying a flooded car, make sure you have a backup budget in case the seller did not repair the faults properly.

Transmissions are usually dismantled, cleaned, lubricated and and put together in order for them to work properly again. There is a huge risk that the repair has not been done properly because the symptoms do not show right away. They might creep overtime when you least expect it.

The electrical system is one of the most difficult tasks to repair in flooded vehicles. Even after cleaning each and every component, issues can resurface due to slow metal contamination overtime. Usually, the best way to fix this is to replace the entire electrical system altogether. As you may imagine, this can be costly and require quite a lot of time.

As you may have now realized, a repaired flooded vehicle may not be a good longterm investment - but this won’t stop some from trying to pass waterlogged cars onto unsuspecting prospective buyers. This is why it is always important to carry out pre-purchase inspections, and to try and find the history of the car. Most American flooded cars that are auctioned can easily be found by us at BeSoji. We include this for free as part of our comprehensive pre-purchase inspection.

If you really want to know if a car has a flood history, check for these pointers:

  • Mud or silt under seats or dash, or inside glovebox, ashtray, ducting or filters

  • Rust in the spare wheel, tool pouch or boot wells

  • Damaged or missing logbooks and service records

  • Corrosion of unpainted metal components, both inside and out

  • White, powdery corrosion on alloys and green, powdery corrosion on electricals

  • General interior wetness or dampness is an obvious sign but like all of the above, in isolation it could have an innocent explanation

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