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A good dealer can restore flood-damaged cars so that they look almost new, but don't let the good looks fool you. Buying a flood-damaged car comes with a lot of risk. However, a wet past doesn't necessarily make a used car a bad buy, either. So, how do you decide whether to gamble on a car with a watery history?


Consumer Reports has tips on how to avoid being sunk by buying a used flood car. Experts warn that cars swamped in stormwaters could return to market.


If you're buying a flood vehicle with the idea that you'll rebuild it, try to run as many checks and tests as possible before you hand over that wad of cash. (And don't even think of applying for a loan to buy a salvaged vehicle. It won't happen.) Still, you'll have very little to go on because the cars are displayed without electrical power.


Yet, flood damage can be difficult to identify. In addition, vehicle buyers might not consider flood damage if no recent flooding has occurred in their area. They may not be aware that flood-damaged vehicles are often transported across state lines. Such autos can turn up on used car lots many miles from where a flood occurred.


Ask good questions, too. Specifically, inquire if the vehicle was ever damaged in a flood. Get your answers in writing and if the seller is unwilling to provide clear evidence, move on. There are plenty of other dealers who are more than willing to go the extra mile to guarantee that you aren’t buying a vehicle with a salvage title.


One of the many risks of buying a used car is that you don't know its history. Sellers have an arsenal of supplies and tactics to dress up a used car, even if it has been severely damaged. Flood-damaged cars fall into this category. If you're thinking of buying a used car, be sure to know how to recognize water damage from flooding.


Salvage and Flood Damage Vehicles: Buy flood damaged cars from online auction. Bid and buy all models of water wrecked vehicles, salvage trucks, boats, SUVs, motorcycles at Salvagebid.com.


If you suspect a dealer is knowingly selling a storm-damaged car or a salvaged vehicle as a good-condition used car, contact your auto insurance company, local law enforcement agency, or the NICB at (800) TEL-NICB . You’ll help someone else avoid a rip-off. If you have other questions about buying a car, these resources can help.


There are some precautions a used-car shopper can take to minimize, if not eliminate, the chances of buying one of these future rust buckets. Depending on whether the seller is a licensed dealer or a private owner, duped buyers may have some legal recourse if, after purchase, their used car turns out to be flood damaged, but that's not guaranteed.


About Auto Auction Mall. Auto Auction Mall is an online marketplace that connects to all of the major salvage & insurance vehicle auction houses in North America. We have helped thousands of buyers from dozens of countries buy and ship their dream cars while spending a fraction of the retail price to get them.