Months after floods, hurricanes, and tropical storms, flood-damaged cars hit the market. The unscrupulous sellers hope they can sell the compromised vehicles to unsuspecting buyers.
Water damage renders a car unsafe in a number of different ways. Saltwater can be especially corrosive and damaging to a vehicle.
So, if you are in the market for a used car, how do you keep from becoming a victim?
The Keating Agency has found some information to help you spot a water-contaminated car. This includes and almost sure-fire way to learn if a vehicle was previously submerged.
Flood-Damaged Car and Trucks Dangerous for Drivers
Last month, the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) issued a warning about used car purchases. Following Hurricane Barry, NICB said criminals frequently try to sell flood-damaged vehicles to buyers in other parts of the country.
The NCIB website, warned that if the price of a used car is too-good-to be-true, that is a red flag.
Most cars damaged by floods are sold to parts companies to cannibalize. However, some are cleaned up to be resold to unassuming buyers.
NICB warns buyers to do a thorough inspection of a car before buying. Look for water stains. Do a smell check. If possible, get a vehicle history report.
One important item to check is the Vehicle Identification Number. Running that number through NICB’s VINCheck can show if a flood insurance claim is associated with the car. Most Auto Insurance companies share their salvage data with NICB.
However, some criminals change the VIN and title of a car. This makes identifying a vehicle’s history difficult.
NICB suggests having a trusted mechanic inspect the vehicle before purchase. While a car may look and smell clean, a mechanic will know what to look for to identify water damage not readily visible.
The Keating Agency has had our customers’ back for 50 years. We are a local, independent agency, and our relationship with you goes beyond selling policies. Providing you with the tools to make better decisions is one of the best parts of our job.
Even if you aren’t a customer, feel free to take advantage of our blogs to learn more about insurance and other issues. If you like to learn more about us and our business, give us a call. Any time we can spend with members of the community is quality time.