Fact or Fiction: Car Flood Damage

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

With all the flooding in the U.S. in recent years, car buyers should beware: Flood-damaged cars are showing up on used car lots nationwide, sometimes without any warning to potential owners. How much do you know about flood-damaged cars? Take our quiz and find out!

The odor from mold and mildew eventually fades.

Unfortunately, no amount of shampooing will get rid of that musty, flooded-car smell.


Opening the glove compartment may tell you whether or not a car has been in a flood.

Mud and other debris from floods can make its way below and into the glove compartment and console.


The worst that can happen when inadvertently buying a flood-damaged car is that it will cost more money than anticipated.

The worst that can happen is a fatal accident, as flood waters can damage important safety and operational systems in a car.


It's never a good idea to buy a flood-damaged car.

A car may be OK after a flood, if it was flooded by fresh water rather than salt water and if the water wasn't too high or long-lasting.


It's a safe bet to buy a flood-damaged car as a temporary solution since you can always turn around and resell it.

Reselling a flood-damaged car is nearly impossible, as most people don't want to take on the financial and safety risks.


A new stereo system is always a big plus in a used car.

Unless a dealer had a good reason to update the sound system, a new stereo could mean the old one was damaged from flood water.


As long as you buy a car in a state that has been spared from flooding, the used car is not likely to be flood damaged.

Flood-damaged cars make their way around the country, changing titles along the path, so no region is immune from unscrupulous offerings.


You can test for water damage by bending wires under the dashboard.

If the wires under the dashboard are brittle, they've been submerged in and damaged by water.


You might not be told if a car is flood-damaged since not all states require dealers to disclose such history.

Quite a few states don't require a car to be labeled "Flood" or "Salvage," so beware that you may not be dealing with full disclosure.


A sweet-smelling car is always a good sign that it was well taken care of.

A car that smells too strongly of air freshener may be hiding something a little less sweet: a moldy aroma.


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