How to Identify and Avoid Flood-Damaged Cars

By Max Anthony •  Updated: 08/02/21 •  4 min read

Flood damage can happen to any car, but it is especially something to be concerned about for cars that are stored in or around the home. Floodwaters are known to be capable of taking any sort of car, as they can come from different sources, like rivers or even underground manholes. 

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Flood-damaged cars can become a huge problem when they take time to be repaired. Here, we will be discussing some important information on how to identify and avoid flood-damaged cars.

How To Identify Flood-Damaged Cars?

If you do not know how to identify an affected car, it would be best for you to use a camera or a spy, or a simple body-worn camera to film and document any damages to your car. 

Flood-Damaged Cars
image source © forbes

After recording damage occurrences, take your car to an auto shop. If you do not have one nearby, it would be okay to bring a piece of paper and jot down the make, model, serial number, and the damage incurred, including the location of the damage. Take pictures of the damage as well.

You may have noticed some floating objects under the car that look somewhat damaged and might look like a bit of mold or mildew. If you find this, there is a big chance that your car has suffered water damage. 

The first thing that you need to do is to locate the source of the flooding. If you have located the source of the flooding yet were unable to remove the flooded objects, then you will have to wait until it dries out. Once the damage is done, you can start your search for how to identify and avoid flood-damaged cars.

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When looking at flood-damaged cars, it would help if you could see the underside of the vehicle. Floodwaters tend to eat away at the undercarriage of cars, so if you find some visible mold or mildew, this means that there is more damage underneath than on top. 

Check out for any bubbling paint or signs of body damage that might indicate some rusting. Another possible clue that you have found some flood-damaged cars is if the engine has seized or something has just gone wrong with the vehicle’s electrical system.

How To Reduce The Risks Of Buying Flooded Cars?

There are some things you can do to reduce the risk of buying flooded cars. First of all, you need to turn off your car’s engine before you approach any flooded cars. 

If you have found one near a river, you may want to get down low and look carefully for mud and other debris in the area. Also, be aware of any trees or bushes in the immediate area that might be causing problems with visibility. Remember not to step out into these areas unless you have to.

Now, if you are wondering how to identify and avoid flood-damaged cars, it is time for you to get serious about getting repairs done to prevent more damage from occurring. One of the first things you can do is find a good shop for auto repairs. 

You don’t want to end up with a big bill to pay just because you didn’t realize that your car had been damaged in a flood. It is better to spend a few dollars on a good auto mechanic than to end up with thousands of dollars in vehicle damage payments to pay for.

Does Car Insurance Policy Cover Flood Damage Cars?

You also need to make sure that your car insurance policy covers flood damages. If it doesn’t, you are going to have to get a flood policy that covers your car in case of floodwaters. 

While some people think they are covered during a regular car accident, this is often not the case when floodwaters damage your vehicle. So, if your insurance company won’t cover flood waters damage, it is strongly recommended that you get a flood policy that will take care of any damages resulting from floodwaters.


When learning how to identify and avoid flood-damaged cars, you should also be careful to not push your car to a car wash right after the accident. Car washes can flood your car.

 This often happens when vehicles are washed at the same time. If you are unsure whether or not your vehicle will be safe after being washed at a car wash, you should avoid washing it there.

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Max Anthony

Max is a gizmo-savvy guy, who has a tendency to get pulled into the nitty gritty details of technology and cars. He attended UT Austin, where he studied Information Science. He’s married and has three kids, one dog and a GMC truck and a Porsche 911. With a large family, he still finds time to share tips and tricks on cars, trucks and more.

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