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As the recent past has shown, severe weather can have a crippling effect on the area(s) it hits. Storm preparation is often on the minds of the citizens in prone areas, as is storm recovery. The best way to work through a storm recovery situation is like any other major life situation, in stages. Once you make sure that your family is safe, it’s time to check the property. After you secure what remains of your belongings, then starts the road back to normalcy. For some, that road may include the search for another vehicle. Searching for used cars after a severe weather event takes an extra keen eye.

Purchasing a Water Damaged Car

Purchasing a water damaged car is a risky proposition. This is because the car may have sustained damage to its electrical system and other critical components that may cost you big in the long run. However, if you are still set on purchasing this type of car it is important to do some research and not just take the keys and go. First, look for the signs of damage listed below.  Second, if you know the car has indeed suffered water damage, it is important to find out what type of water it was exposed to; salt or other. This is important as each type of water can damage a car in different ways.

What to Look for

When consumers are shopping for cars, they get what fits their needs and likes as far as model, color, and gas mileage. While you can still search for cars that meet these criteria after a severe weather event, there are some other telltale signs you will also want to watch for. If you see any of these signs, then it may be best to continue your search.

Check the trunk, glove compartment, the dashboard and below the seats for signs of water damage such as silt or rust.  Once you have checked those out, test the lights and other electrical components several times to make sure they work. You may also want to take the car to a trusted mechanic to have it checked out in a pre-purchase inspection. Much like a home inspector who walks through your home before you purchase it, a mechanics trained eye will be able to spot any potential problems with the car before you commit to it.

Purchasing used cars for sale in areas that have recently, within the last six to twelve months, sustained severe flooding is risky. However, doing some research and employing a professional set of eyes can give the consumer the peace of mind to sign on the dotted line.

Jake Alexander is a freelance writer who enjoys blogging about cars and trucks. Follow him @JakeAlexander17.