Buying a used car has its benefits. You don’t have to worry about substantial depreciation and sticker mark-up that commonly comes with brand new cars. Also, many dealers offer extended warranty plans that allow you to buy with confidence so that you can have what appears to be a new car for far less than what a new car would cost.

However, with the recent floods in Texas and Oklahoma, it is likely that flood damaged cars may flood the used car market in our region. It is also important for used car shoppers in Pennsylvania to realize that these cars could make their way into our markets. 

A recent ABC report highlighted the process in which unscrupulous used car dealers (and some car owners) attempt to make flood cars look like they are brand new.  Essentially, the cars underwent a five hour detailing process where flood stains and water marks were conveniently removed. However, informed consumers can look to a number of things to ensure that they are buying a car that has not been compromised in a flood.

Check the undercarriage – If the underside of the car shows signs of rust, chances are that is has been submerged for a significant amount of time.

Check the vehicle history report – Not only will this report indicate whether the car has been in a flood, but it will also show whether it has been repaired after an accident.

Have the car inspected – It is also wise to have the car inspected by an independent third party or a mechanic of your choice.