Signs your car may have been damaged in flood waters

Signs your car may have been damaged in flood waters

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Auto repair shops across the state are working around the clock to repair cars damaged by the flooding.

One car expert tells us  many people might not even realize their car was damaged from driving through high water.

An auto body shop in West Ashley explains water damage signs to look for in your car.

Matthew Buero, co-owner of Ultimate Autowerks, has seen first had what this flood water can do to your car.

"It can be catastrophic," said Buero.

Their shop has had several cars come in that are a total loss.

One car sitting in their lot still has standing water in it, after nearly a week of drying out.

Others had to be completely gutted because water got inside.

"There's a lot of electrical control modules under the carpet and it's just like your computer at home they don't function very well in wet environments," said Buero.

If you're wondering if your car suffered damage in the flooding, there are things to look for.

"If something starts happening, like the windshield wipers don't work, a light is out, warning lights on the dash - take the car to a mechanic and have them look it over," said Buero.

AAA suggests looking for water stains in the carpets, floorboards, trunk and exterior of the car and tires. Also, check under the hood and look for any mud, or loose debris and a damp or musty odor.
Whatever you do, if you suspect water damage, Buero says don't ignore the problem.

"It's not going to get better," said Buero. "The longer you wait, the more chance of damage you have."

AAA says if you're going to be buying a new car in the coming months and worried about unknowingly buying a flood-damaged one, get a thorough pre-purchase inspection by a qualified shop.

As part of their inspection, the shop will look for common indicators of flood damage like dried mud under the hood or a musty odor in the vehicle.
New carpeting and upholstery in an older car can be a red flag calling for closer inspection.

Copyright WCSC 2015. All rights reserved.