What to do with car that flooded

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

A couple weeks ago I was driving in the dark during a heavy rainstorm and turned into a poorly lit neighborhood street that apparently had a clogged storm drain resulting in about a foot of water on the road. When my 2016 Toyota Camry XSE with just over 100k miles hit that water the engine stalled and died. Most vehicles probably would have gone through that depth of water OK but the Camry is very low to the ground so it just didn't quite make it. When I opened the car door to exit the vehicle after it got stuck the water level was right at about the door opening so some water came in but not a ton. I did not have comprehensive insurance on the car.

I got it pulled out and apparently water had gotten into the engine and the engine couldn't start anymore. I had it towed to a mechanic I trust and they confirmed the entire engine has to be replaced. They found an available engine with only 38,000 miles on it someone was selling from a similar Camry that had been wrecked. I saw pictures of the wrecked car, only the back end was damaged and the front end where the engine sits looks fine. Total cost of the repair including parts, labor, and buying the replacement engine ended up being about $5,500. The car KBB value before the incident would have been about $14,500 (in today's market). In addition to the mechanical work the auto shop removed the seats and all interior carpet to ensure everything got dried out and treated everything with some chemicals to prevent mold or mildew smell.

So now the car is repaired and appears to run fine and I don't detect a noticeable smell inside. I have been wanting to sell the car and get something different for a while now and since the repairs on this took a couple weeks I went ahead and already bought a replacement. Now I need to figure out how to best offload the Camry. With the flood history how should I determine what the car is worth? Am I best off trying to sell it private party or to some sort of dealer or company? Who will even touch a car with flood history?
User avatar
RickBoglehead
Posts: 6746
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:10 am
Location: In a house

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by RickBoglehead »

No one.
Avid user of forums on variety of interests-financial, home brewing, F-150, PHEV, home repair, etc. Enjoy learning & passing on knowledge. It's PRINCIPAL, not PRINCIPLE. I ADVISE you to seek ADVICE.
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

RickBoglehead wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:01 pm No one.
So what would you do with it?
stimulacra
Posts: 967
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2016 3:50 pm
Location: Houston

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by stimulacra »

If I were in your shoes, I would keep it. You won't be able to sell it at anything remotely close to what you think the fair market value of your car is.

It might be possible, in today's overheated used car market to unload it.

Never had a car engine stalled from flooding but I have had cars that took in water during storms and was able to drive them till they died a natural death otherwise. It wasn't obvious that the cars were flood damaged but for those that knew where to look, you can see the water damage.
simplextableau
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:20 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by simplextableau »

Throw it up on Craigslist and see what offers you get. In this hot market, given you can explain personally exactly how it was repaired, you probably can get a price that would surprise you. It will be a few thousand less than a nonflooded one of course.
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

simplextableau wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:14 pm Throw it up on Craigslist and see what offers you get. In this hot market, given you can explain personally exactly how it was repaired, you probably can get a price that would surprise you. It will be a few thousand less than a nonflooded one of course.
That is what I was considering doing. What do you think a fair price would be if the KBB private party value before was $14,500? Maybe $10k?
simplextableau
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:20 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by simplextableau »

I think $10k would be reasonable. You can always take a lowball offer or lower the price if you find there's no interest near that price. Make sure you state in the written bill of sale that it was previously flooded and is sold as-is.
illumination
Posts: 1478
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:13 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by illumination »

Having a flood history on a car is a really big deal, way bigger than a conventional "totaled" accident history or a salvage title imo. Modern cars just have so many sensors and wires and even something minor like a corroded ground and the car is incredibly hard to diagnose and repair. And then there's mold and smells. I'd be really worried an angry buyer comes back, better have a bill of sale with "as-is" and the flood history disclosed.

As long as you give full disclosure and have receipts, might as well see what you can get. I know I wouldn't go anywhere near it even at a massive discount. But not everyone feels that way and someone might want to take the gamble to save a few bucks.

My guess is someone will buy and flip it and the ultimate owner will never know the car was involved in a flood because an insurance company didn't get involved.
7eight9
Posts: 1902
Joined: Fri May 17, 2019 7:11 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by 7eight9 »

Disclose what you are required to disclose pursuant to state law. After that caveat emptor.
I guess it all could be much worse. | They could be warming up my hearse.
Monsterflockster
Posts: 737
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2019 12:03 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Monsterflockster »

jimmyrules712 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:59 pm A couple weeks ago I was driving in the dark during a heavy rainstorm and turned into a poorly lit neighborhood street that apparently had a clogged storm drain resulting in about a foot of water on the road. When my 2016 Toyota Camry XSE with just over 100k miles hit that water the engine stalled and died. Most vehicles probably would have gone through that depth of water OK but the Camry is very low to the ground so it just didn't quite make it. When I opened the car door to exit the vehicle after it got stuck the water level was right at about the door opening so some water came in but not a ton. I did not have comprehensive insurance on the car.

I got it pulled out and apparently water had gotten into the engine and the engine couldn't start anymore. I had it towed to a mechanic I trust and they confirmed the entire engine has to be replaced. They found an available engine with only 38,000 miles on it someone was selling from a similar Camry that had been wrecked. I saw pictures of the wrecked car, only the back end was damaged and the front end where the engine sits looks fine. Total cost of the repair including parts, labor, and buying the replacement engine ended up being about $5,500. The car KBB value before the incident would have been about $14,500 (in today's market). In addition to the mechanical work the auto shop removed the seats and all interior carpet to ensure everything got dried out and treated everything with some chemicals to prevent mold or mildew smell.

So now the car is repaired and appears to run fine and I don't detect a noticeable smell inside. I have been wanting to sell the car and get something different for a while now and since the repairs on this took a couple weeks I went ahead and already bought a replacement. Now I need to figure out how to best offload the Camry. With the flood history how should I determine what the car is worth? Am I best off trying to sell it private party or to some sort of dealer or company? Who will even touch a car with flood history?
Your car is only worth the price of scrap metal. Drive it til it dies.
Last edited by Monsterflockster on Fri Jun 11, 2021 11:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Watty
Posts: 22696
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:55 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Watty »

jimmyrules712 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:59 pm Who will even touch a car with flood history?
You might check with your mechanic to see if they know anyone that would be interested in buying the car. I have known mechanics and they typically have people asking them to keep a lookout for used cars. They may have a friend, relative, or some other customer that would be interested in it and would trust that mechanic when they say it was fixed right.
User avatar
RickBoglehead
Posts: 6746
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:10 am
Location: In a house

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by RickBoglehead »

You may be required to get a flood title. Check with your state. If you sell it, write a statement of exactly what was done and a copy of all receipts and get buyer to sign for receipt of them.

People drop collision on old cars. You didn't have comprehensive coverage on a 5 year old car. Hopefully you have learned why self-insurance can be very expensive.

What would I do? Not have put a dime into it, but that's irrelevant at this point. Drive it til it dies. Sell what you bought.
Last edited by RickBoglehead on Fri Jun 11, 2021 7:23 am, edited 1 time in total.
Avid user of forums on variety of interests-financial, home brewing, F-150, PHEV, home repair, etc. Enjoy learning & passing on knowledge. It's PRINCIPAL, not PRINCIPLE. I ADVISE you to seek ADVICE.
shunkman
Posts: 278
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2018 9:59 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by shunkman »

I'm curious why your car's engine needed to be replaced after driving in only "about a foot" of water. Most cars would survive this without a problem.
Jack FFR1846
Posts: 13702
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am
Location: 26 miles, 385 yards west of Copley Square

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

shunkman wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:21 am I'm curious why your car's engine needed to be replaced after driving in only "about a foot" of water. Most cars would survive this without a problem.
I'd guess that the water level in the engine compartment was much higher. The water got into the intake and into the cylinders. Once that happens, rods bend and that's it for the engine.

I'd sell it to Car Max. Flood cars can be properly repaired, but it is a ton of work. I live next to a shop who used to do insurance write off cars. Standard procedure was to replace every single electronic component in the car and either re-pin every single connector or replace the wiring harnesses. Knowing how high the water got might reduce the number of components that need to be replaced, only if your state isn't as stringent as mine. I've been through the inspection facility who needs to confirm a repair is properly done and they check that every electrical component is new. At the end of that process, if the car does have a flood title, it's only worth 50% of what a clean title car is worth, so it really needs to be a higher dollar car, acquired for nearly nothing. For your car, it probably should have been sold without the repair.

I would agree with some others here that you should keep and drive the car until it's dead, then craigslist it, being completely honest with its history. I'd expect the next owner will want to buy it to pull out that replacement engine, sell off some of the mechanical parts, then scrap the materials that are worth anything.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid
gac1979
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:03 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by gac1979 »

Sell the replacement car and drive the Camry til it dies. I’m guessing you won’t do that, but you may well get the most bang for your buck out of that option in today’s car market.
User avatar
msi
Posts: 664
Joined: Sun Feb 17, 2008 11:15 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by msi »

Get an offer from Carvana. If you have a Carmax near you, that's also worth comparing to.
Mr. Rumples
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:16 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Mr. Rumples »

Not sure about all states, but in VA if your vehicle has water damage, you are required to disclose it. Many don't of course:

https://www.arlnow.com/2017/10/03/consu ... -vehicles/

If your insurance company paid a water damage claim over $3,500, they are required by state law to notify DMV so a new title can be issued noting the water damage:

https://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/tit ... n46.2-624/

https://mvdb.virginia.gov/wp-content/up ... hicles.pdf
simplextableau
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:20 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by simplextableau »

There's a socioeconomic bias on Bogleheads. Just because we don't buy flood-damaged cars (and I wouldn't under any circumstances) doesn't mean there aren't those who will take the gamble. I bet it sells for $9000, especially since it wasn't flooded in the traditional sense (natural disaster flooding) - he was driving in a rainstorm, hydrolocked the engine, the water was only up to the bottom of the doors, and now has a new engine. All of this talk of it only being worth scrap value is nonsense.
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

simplextableau wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 8:33 am There's a socioeconomic bias on Bogleheads. Just because we don't buy flood-damaged cars (and I wouldn't under any circumstances) doesn't mean there aren't those who will take the gamble. I bet it sells for $9000, especially since it wasn't flooded in the traditional sense (natural disaster flooding) - he was driving in a rainstorm, hydrolocked the engine, the water was only up to the bottom of the doors, and now has a new engine. All of this talk of it only being worth scrap value is nonsense.
This what I'm hoping. I think a lot of people hear "flooded" and picture the car floating down the river with water up to the windshield. In this case the water was high enough to enter the engine, not high enough to enter the front doors, but just high enough that about 1 inch of water entered the rear doors. After getting it out of the water the engine actually did start but sounded horrible.

The mechanic thoroughly inspected all electrical components, transmission, and a number of other things before telling me that it was worth repairing.
Mr. Rumples wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 7:50 am Not sure about all states, but in VA if your vehicle has water damage, you are required to disclose it. Many don't of course:

https://www.arlnow.com/2017/10/03/consu ... -vehicles/

If your insurance company paid a water damage claim over $3,500, they are required by state law to notify DMV so a new title can be issued noting the water damage:

https://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/tit ... n46.2-624/

https://mvdb.virginia.gov/wp-content/up ... hicles.pdf
My state is Texas and I'm having trouble finding concrete info on what circumstances require a new title. I found that a salvage title is required when "it’s so damaged and/or missing a major component part that the repair costs (excluding repainting) are greater than the vehicle’s actual cash value immediately before the damage occurred" and by that definition I am not required to get a new title but I haven't found details on if there are different requirements for flood damage. If you or anyone else reading this knows the answer or how to find it I would appreciate it.
Jack FFR1846 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:36 am
shunkman wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:21 am I'm curious why your car's engine needed to be replaced after driving in only "about a foot" of water. Most cars would survive this without a problem.
I'd guess that the water level in the engine compartment was much higher. The water got into the intake and into the cylinders. Once that happens, rods bend and that's it for the engine.

I'd sell it to Car Max. Flood cars can be properly repaired, but it is a ton of work. I live next to a shop who used to do insurance write off cars. Standard procedure was to replace every single electronic component in the car and either re-pin every single connector or replace the wiring harnesses. Knowing how high the water got might reduce the number of components that need to be replaced, only if your state isn't as stringent as mine. I've been through the inspection facility who needs to confirm a repair is properly done and they check that every electrical component is new. At the end of that process, if the car does have a flood title, it's only worth 50% of what a clean title car is worth, so it really needs to be a higher dollar car, acquired for nearly nothing. For your car, it probably should have been sold without the repair.

I would agree with some others here that you should keep and drive the car until it's dead, then craigslist it, being completely honest with its history. I'd expect the next owner will want to buy it to pull out that replacement engine, sell off some of the mechanical parts, then scrap the materials that are worth anything.
The mechanic confirmed it was water that got into a cylinder and bent a rod. We actually got the engine to start but it sounded horrible. They checked the code thrown and all were engine related. Before committing to the repair they thoroughly inspected the electrical system, transmission, and a few other things and it all looked to be working perfectly fine with no evidence of water or water related damage. They claimed that they do these types of repairs for insurance companies regularly and everything they quoted in my repair includes everything they would have done for insurance. They also said insurance would not have totaled it since it's a $15k car that can be repaired for $5k.

Regarding the title, in Texas a salvage title is required when "it’s so damaged and/or missing a major component part that the repair costs (excluding repainting) are greater than the vehicle’s actual cash value immediately before the damage occurred" and by that definition I am not required to get a new title but I'm still researching to determine if there are different requirements for flood damage.
RickBoglehead wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 5:47 am You may be required to get a flood title. Check with your state. If you sell it, write a statement of exactly what was done and a copy of all receipts and get buyer to sign for receipt of them.

People drop collision on old cars. You didn't have comprehensive coverage on a 5 year old car. Hopefully you have learned why self-insurance can be very expensive.

What would I do? Not have put a dime into it, but that's irrelevant at this point. Drive it til it dies. Sell what you bought.
I dropped comprehensive coverage because the car has over 100k miles and I thought the value was under $10k (might have been before the market went nuts) which I can afford to self-insure. It also is parked in a garage overnight and during the day and doesn't get driven into the countryside ever so I felt there was little risk of the types of things that normally require a comprehensive claim. In hindsight do I wish I had kept comp insurance on it? Sure. But that's easy to say in hindsight.
Last edited by jimmyrules712 on Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
gac1979
Posts: 123
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:03 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by gac1979 »

OP, what do you mean by high enough to enter the “intake”? The intake manifold is typically at the top of the engine. Also, corrosion often takes time to develop, so I’m not sure your mechanic could/should sign off on the electrical aspect of the vehicle. Something doesn’t feel right here.
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

gac1979 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:36 am OP, what do you mean by high enough to enter the “intake”? The intake manifold is typically at the top of the engine. Also, corrosion often takes time to develop, so I’m not sure your mechanic could/should sign off on the electrical aspect of the vehicle. Something doesn’t feel right here.
I just modified my post to remove that statement because you're right, that can't be right and the mechanic never told me how the water would have gotten in. I just made a bad assumption. They just said it got into a cylinder and bent a rod.
User avatar
leeks
Posts: 1123
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 4:33 pm
Location: virginia

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by leeks »

List it for $10K private sale - fully disclosing the details of flooding and repairs - and see what happens. No harm in trying. If it doesn't get any buyers, then figure out something else.
Mr. Rumples
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:16 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Mr. Rumples »

Texas apparently includes non-disclosure as fraud:

http://www.moonlawfirm.com/blog/2017/8/ ... subcompact
Topic Author
jimmyrules712
Posts: 636
Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 11:36 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by jimmyrules712 »

Mr. Rumples wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:45 am Texas apparently includes non-disclosure as fraud:

http://www.moonlawfirm.com/blog/2017/8/ ... subcompact
I fully intend to disclose the entire history to whomever buys it. But that doesn't necessarily mean I need to go get a salvage title if the car doesn't meet the state's requirements for classifying it as salvage.
Mr. Rumples
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:16 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Mr. Rumples »

My apologies, I did not mean to imply that you would consider fraud, only that advice to not disclose should not be heeded IMHO. Vehicles are regulated differently than many other consumer items. From a search I can't find where TX requires what VA does, but I am not adept at searching the TX Code.

At my age, one decade rolls into the next, but as best I can recall, VA started the flood disclosure about 30 years ago after the market was filled with flood damaged cars from NC after a storm down there.
User avatar
galawdawg
Posts: 2443
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:59 pm
Location: Georgia

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by galawdawg »

jimmyrules712 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 11:03 am
Mr. Rumples wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:45 am Texas apparently includes non-disclosure as fraud:

http://www.moonlawfirm.com/blog/2017/8/ ... subcompact
I fully intend to disclose the entire history to whomever buys it. But that doesn't necessarily mean I need to go get a salvage title if the car doesn't meet the state's requirements for classifying it as salvage.
Do you still live in Texas? If so, take a look at this: https://www.texasattorneygeneral.gov/co ... maged-cars

You may wish to contact Texas DMV to ascertain what requirements, if any, you have in light of the guidance from the Texas Attorney General linked above.
Kagord
Posts: 694
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2018 1:28 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by Kagord »

Yes, your car is running, but I would not say it's back to normal. From what I've read on flooded cars, a few years down the road, the electronics start massively failing, one after the other. It's why a flooded car is considered a total loss. As other's have stated, I would drive it till it dies. If it goes for 20 more years, maybe it will, consider yourself lucky.
Last edited by Kagord on Fri Jun 11, 2021 1:22 pm, edited 2 times in total.
H-Town
Posts: 3650
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 2:08 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by H-Town »

jimmyrules712 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:59 pm A couple weeks ago I was driving in the dark during a heavy rainstorm and turned into a poorly lit neighborhood street that apparently had a clogged storm drain resulting in about a foot of water on the road. When my 2016 Toyota Camry XSE with just over 100k miles hit that water the engine stalled and died. Most vehicles probably would have gone through that depth of water OK but the Camry is very low to the ground so it just didn't quite make it. When I opened the car door to exit the vehicle after it got stuck the water level was right at about the door opening so some water came in but not a ton. I did not have comprehensive insurance on the car.

I got it pulled out and apparently water had gotten into the engine and the engine couldn't start anymore. I had it towed to a mechanic I trust and they confirmed the entire engine has to be replaced. They found an available engine with only 38,000 miles on it someone was selling from a similar Camry that had been wrecked. I saw pictures of the wrecked car, only the back end was damaged and the front end where the engine sits looks fine. Total cost of the repair including parts, labor, and buying the replacement engine ended up being about $5,500. The car KBB value before the incident would have been about $14,500 (in today's market). In addition to the mechanical work the auto shop removed the seats and all interior carpet to ensure everything got dried out and treated everything with some chemicals to prevent mold or mildew smell.

So now the car is repaired and appears to run fine and I don't detect a noticeable smell inside. I have been wanting to sell the car and get something different for a while now and since the repairs on this took a couple weeks I went ahead and already bought a replacement. Now I need to figure out how to best offload the Camry. With the flood history how should I determine what the car is worth? Am I best off trying to sell it private party or to some sort of dealer or company? Who will even touch a car with flood history?
OP - since you already bought a replacement car, it looks like you gonna have to sell the flooded car... I wouldn't touch it with a 10 foot pole, but you may find someone will find value if the price is low enough. I definitely don't think anyone would pay $10k for 100,000 mile car with a flood history. But you never know.
DoubleComma
Posts: 359
Joined: Sun Aug 23, 2020 2:23 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by DoubleComma »

Someone will buy this car, certainly not at $14k and likely not at $9500 either if you properly disclose the flood and engine replacement.

However, this is absolutely the type of car I would take a $5k gamble on for a new teenage driver around our small town car.

Another thought - You might also look into a charitable donation, also with disclosure. Around here they advertise running or not, I'm sure they would take it for free and scrap or sell it at a significant discount and maybe you can get book value as a donation. Just thought, someone with more knowledge I'm sure will weigh in.
psteinx
Posts: 3683
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 2:24 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by psteinx »

DoubleComma wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 1:24 pmmaybe you can get book value as a donation.
IIUC, in most cases, for cars with value >$500, your deduction should/will be for the value the charity sold it for, not some inflated "book value".
illumination
Posts: 1478
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:13 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by illumination »

DoubleComma wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 1:24 pm Someone will buy this car, certainly not at $14k and likely not at $9500 either if you properly disclose the flood and engine replacement.

However, this is absolutely the type of car I would take a $5k gamble on for a new teenage driver around our small town car.
That's the price level where I could see someone making the gamble ($5k-$7k) and that's unfortunately close to what it cost just to replace the engine.

I think the smart play is to drive the repaired car into the ground and sell the newer one. But maybe things being nuts with used car prices, someone pays a lot more than they should for the flooded one.
toast0
Posts: 214
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2014 1:41 am
Location: Puget Sound

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by toast0 »

illumination wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:10 pmI think the smart play is to drive the repaired car into the ground and sell the newer one. But maybe things being nuts with used car prices, someone pays a lot more than they should for the flooded one.
Yeah, probably verify title requirements and get it branded as needed and try to sell it as-is, because market is crazy; if you can't get a good enough price in a couple weeks (plus or minus what it takes to get the title sorted), then sell the replacement, maybe for more than you got it for, because the market is crazy and drive the flooded car until it starts getting weird.
simplextableau
Posts: 54
Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:20 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by simplextableau »

His car is not likely to ever get "weird" or have any electrical problems. It wasn't flooded in the classical sense - there's nothing major in a Corolla that would be damaged from water an inch or so above the bottom of the door sills for a short while. The delicate connectors are higher up. Flooded cars with electrical problems are because the water was two or three feet deep. Hydrolocking a car in a foot of water just means water splashed into the engine air intake. It doesn't take that much depth of water at all, just the wrong speed and splashes going in the wrong places under the hood. If it's accurately described in the Craigslist listing, it will be obvious to potential buyers that it's not a car that sat under deep water, and he should have no problems selling at the right price.
User avatar
leeks
Posts: 1123
Joined: Thu Apr 07, 2011 4:33 pm
Location: virginia

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by leeks »

If you can't get more, you could sell to this other boglehead who wanted to buy a much older Camry for $5K:
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=348953&p=6010169&h ... r#p6010169
kurious wrote: Sun May 16, 2021 11:50 am
As new drivers, we do value safety as much as cost and reliability. The primary motivation behind getting this old car is to practice and develop our driving skills before we purchase an expensive vehicle. We live in a crowded area with street parking where dings and minor damages are very common. We thus want to work with an inexpensive and reliable vehicle before we get good at this. It's similar to how high school students get beater cars to drive locally before they get newer vehicles.
...
We are not in a pressing hurry to buy.
B4Xt3r
Posts: 601
Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:56 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by B4Xt3r »

shunkman wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:21 am I'm curious why your car's engine needed to be replaced after driving in only "about a foot" of water. Most cars would survive this without a problem.
+1 I’ve personally sucked water into my engines intake. Took out the spark plugs, turned engine over to spit water out, changed engine oil. Been driving it ever since. See other people do it too.
illumination
Posts: 1478
Joined: Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:13 pm

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by illumination »

B4Xt3r wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 8:24 am
shunkman wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:21 am I'm curious why your car's engine needed to be replaced after driving in only "about a foot" of water. Most cars would survive this without a problem.
+1 I’ve personally sucked water into my engines intake. Took out the spark plugs, turned engine over to spit water out, changed engine oil. Been driving it ever since. See other people do it too.
If it hydrolocks, water gets into the combustion chamber, the water can't compress and the pistons slam into it, so it bends the pistons.

You probably got lucky in that enough water didn't get in for this to occur.
ncbill
Posts: 1068
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 4:03 pm
Location: Western NC

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by ncbill »

Did OP even try to file an insurance claim?

Sounds like they just paid for repairs out-of-pocket.

Here that would mean no change in title.
User avatar
galawdawg
Posts: 2443
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:59 pm
Location: Georgia

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by galawdawg »

ncbill wrote: Sat Jun 12, 2021 12:30 pm Did OP even try to file an insurance claim?

Sounds like they just paid for repairs out-of-pocket.

Here that would mean no change in title.
No coverage.
jimmyrules712 wrote: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:59 pm I did not have comprehensive insurance on the car.
Flood or salvage title requirements vary from state to state.
User avatar
wander
Posts: 3733
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:10 am

Re: What to do with car that flooded

Post by wander »

gac1979 wrote: Fri Jun 11, 2021 9:36 am OP, what do you mean by high enough to enter the “intake”? The intake manifold is typically at the top of the engine. Also, corrosion often takes time to develop, so I’m not sure your mechanic could/should sign off on the electrical aspect of the vehicle. Something doesn’t feel right here.
That 's possible. "If any water got sucked into the air cleaner, it can suck water into the engine, which can bend the valve and cause huge problems."WHAT TO DO WITH A FLOODED VEHICLE The water doesn't have to reach the top of engine for water to get in the intake.
Post Reply