How to spot a flood damaged vehicle

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Sometimes flooded vehicles that are not totaled by insurance companies, and are sold as salvage vehicles.

Robby Malcom says those salvaged cars can be sold at auctions. Often, mechanics will buy those and try to fix them up and make a quick sale. He says that may be a great way to get a cheap vehicle. But there are some things you should know if you are buying a salvage car.

Look for signs of rust in covered spots, like under the floor, trunk, and inside the glove compartment. These are signs the car has been flooded. Be sure to ask the seller for a title, which should be stamped “flood” or salvage”. Take the car to a trusted mechanic. Have them check the instrument panel.

Also have them check the oil indicator. Indicators with extremely high oil levels could mean there’s water in the engine.

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