AAA warns of flood-damaged cars coming to Miami Valley


Get under the vehicle and check the suspension for water damage.

In Michigan, consumers don't really have to worry about flood damage.

ADOT said flood damaged cars should say "salvage" or "flood damage" on the title.

Generally speaking, when it comes to buying a used vehicle in a private sale, it's important to take the time and ask lots of questions.

2 - BUT Carfax isn't your only option for checking the VIN. Carfax also provides a similar service for free.

3 - Pricing should be a red flag.

"If a buyer finds a deal on a vehicle that seems too good to be true, then it probably is", Hack said.

Mechanics say while most of these concerns are fixable, the fix costs often reach into the thousands of dollars.

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Even though Nevada is a long way from Texas or Florida, auto buyers in the Silver State still need to be on the lookout for flood-damaged vehicles in the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, according to the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles. "All parties - governments, the insurance industry and policyholders - have a responsibility to do this". This means if they flooded, the previous owner may have dried them out and repaired them on their own, which means insurance companies and reputable vehicle dealers may have never seen them or logged any damage info in the VIN report found via services like Carfax.

6 - Use your nose.

"I bought a vehicle a year ago and the seller never told us anything about it being a flood auto", said Charlene Geiger from Pennsylvania.

He said consumers might see deals like a new, 2016 vehicle that sold for $40,000 going for $5,000. Ask to get rid of any air scented products and roll up the windows. Tens of thousands of personal vehicles were inundated by floodwaters or smashed by wind-tossed objects, creating a huge demand for rentals that has put the cars in painfully short supply in the Houston area and across eastern Texas. "You want to do that kind of research up front". It's why experts are warning you to be extra vigilant next time you buy a vehicle. Look inside under the carpet and floor mats and examine the trunk for dirt, silt and mold.

New headlights on an older model could be a giveaway.

8 - Check for rust. It might be coming from an area the seller is unable to completely clean. The damage sustained to the body by flying debris can be fixed, but water issues are not that easy. Some people will buy the flooded cars to part them out or they'll try to fix them and export them to another country.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, "a salvage title means the vehicle was declared a total loss by an insurance company because of a serious accident or some other problems".