The AA Insurance has issued a warning that an estimated 6,700 cars were damaged by the extreme weather conditions over the Christmas period in the UK.
Water can damage parts of the car such as the brakes and the electrical system, making it unsafe to drive but it might not be obvious.
Speaking about flooded vehicles, Justin Kavanagh, managing director of MyVehicle.ie said: “If corrosion reaches critical components it can not only lead to costly repairs but it can also make a vehicle extremely dangerous to drive. Unfortunately spotting a previously flooded vehicle can be difficult to spot and opportunists care very little about the danger they are causing others by selling these vehicles.
How to Spot a Flood Damaged Car
Look for any indication that they have been under water. If there is any condensation or water lines, this could mean that the car has had possible water damage.
Use Your Senses
Does the car smell mouldy? This could be a sign that the car had water damage.
Another thing to look out for is if the car smells too good. The car may have been sprayed with air freshener to cover something up.
If the windows are condensated, it could mean that there is significant moisture in the car.
Keep an Eye out for Rust
There will be rust on cars that are very old. However, if the wires under the dashboard, the pedals or components in the engine compartment have significant rust on them that is a major sign of water damage.
Check the Seatbelts
If you hear grinding or feel seatbelts sticking, there may be sand or mud stuck in them. The car was likely flooded somehow, so it makes it hard to pull the seat belt and fasten it. Make sure to check these before buying a used car.
Seems too Cheap
The old saying that “If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is” is especially true with used cars. A car that is cheaper than expected could mean that the seller knows there is something wrong with it and is trying to sell it quickly.
Car History Report
Get a car history report from websites such as www.myvehicle.ie.