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After The Floods, Will Flood Cars Flood The Market?

Flood cars being sold left and right is usually a thing to look out for after major flood issues. I am not sure how it works in Nigeria but in countries with good insurance compensation for flood damaged cars, owners often use the insurance payments to get another car. They just sell the flood car and add that money to the insurance payment to get a new car.
Serious rugged offroad vehicles can usually handle floods but mostly just during short drives submerged in deep water. I had an old 1984 mini van that was sitting in enough water to drown the engine but it only sat in the water for 10 minutes before being pulled out. It started up well after a one hour rest and never a problem with it after.

It is a different story if the car sits in water for 12 hours or more, at depths that inundate the interior as well as the engine and boot. That is enough time to soak into the electrical system. The engine is usualy well insulated against water damage but when it gets into the front console where the radio and other controls are, you can have all kinds of electrical issues. Also water or moisture can remain behind the inner door panels long enough to grow fungus which can eat away the panels from behind until they begin to sag. Speakers can have electrical short outs.

The smell of the car is the best way to catch a flood car. A car that has sat long enough in deep flood waters will not be able to clear out the moisture fast enough to prevent mold and mildew smell from building up and that smell will be the warning that there are likely active mold and mildew colonies eating the door panels from behind the panel cosmetic surface. The padding and insulation in the seats and floor can also hold mold and mildew. If the cars were stripped and had the wet insulation removed but not replaced, that will be a world of future problems to come ,such as issues with unbearable heat building up in the car even with full AC working.

Let the smell of the car reveal itself. Also a car with overwhelming scent application may be a sign of masking the flood smell, but still it cannot erase the smell without overwhelming the car interior with artificial scent.

If you are the owner of a car that was flooded while you owned it, it is possible to recover the car but no guarantee it will be manageable. If it starts and drives after waters subside, it would be worth it to fill the tank and drive the car for several hours to dry out the power train and to also coax out any issues waiting to happen. Better to spend to burn a full tank of petrol than to wait for residual water to make corrosion or electrical short circuits over time. The hard part is getting the interior smell out but it can be done if you start drying it out immediatley and use high heat and mold + mildew killer to keep it from forming. High heat constantly until it is dry. If you can drive it to the Sahara and park it there  -but it may be cheaper to run a tank of petrol with the car idling all day and night with the AC high heat blowing with the windows closed except for a small slit for escape of the humid interior air. Use the interior AC heat if you have the feature, otherwise buy a heater to use. Leaving the car to sit after the waters subside, waiting until you have time to deal with it, is the way to guarantee that moisture damage and bad smells can set in very well. Get to the car immediately and start the drying process. Corrosion in unseen areas and mildew do not take long to begin setting in.


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