Shopping For A Used Truck? Make Sure You Don't Buy One With Flood Damage

Posted on: 10 April 2015


If you are shopping for a used truck this spring, make sure you don't bring one home with flood damage. A vehicle with flood damage can have a whole host of problems that may not be obvious from a casual visual inspection, which is why used trucks with flood damage should be avoided.

Take A Deep Breath – What Do You Smell?

When you get into a used truck, pay attention to how it smells. It can be difficult to mask bad odors, even if the vehicle has been cleaned.

Does the truck smell like mildew? Does it have a sour smell to it? Does it smell a little too much like fuel inside of the truck?

Mildew can be lurking inside the seats and flooring. Often, flood-damaged vehicles were not just exposed to water; they were exposed to other substances, such as oil, that made its way into the floodwater.

Look Around – What Do You See?

Use your eyes to spot things that seem a little off. Is the carpet new, but the seat covers are old, or vice verse?

Mismatching interior could just be a sign of bad taste, or it could be a sign that the original owners are trying to cover something up. Be sure to ask why the carpet and seat covers don't match.

Next, look around and see if you notice any moisture inside of the vehicle. Floodwater can hide inside the lights in a vehicle. Turn on the lights and see if there are any water beads inside of the lights.

Be sure to check inside the glove compartment and any consoles inside of the truck for hidden dirt and moisture. Floods don't just bring water into a vehicle; they also bring lots of dirt. Don't forget to check the compartments inside of the door. Sellers often forget to clean these small spaces when trying to pass off a flood-damaged vehicle.

Purchase A Vehicle History Report – What Does It Tell You?

Write down the used truck's vehicle identification number (VIN) and run it through a vehicle history report website online.

The vehicle history report should be able to tell you if the vehicle has sustained water damage. However, even if it doesn't tell you that directly, you can look for other signs that something is off.

In order to hide flood damage or salvaged titles, sellers sometimes register the vehicle in three or four states, back to back. They do this to hide a bad title under a slew of good ones. Watch out for this trick.

Additionally, keep an eye out for locations where you know floods occurred in the past year. If the vehicle was not insured, the seller may not have made a claim that would show up on a vehicle history report and may have just tried to fix up the vehicle themselves.

When shopping for a used truck, pay attention to your senses. If you smell or see something that is amiss, ask questions. If it doesn't feel right, and you suspect the car may have flood damage, walk away. There are other used trucks out there for you. For more information, contact a business such as Big Sky Dodge Chrysler Ltd used cars.