Consumer Alert: Flooded Car Sales - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

9/17/08

Consumer Alert: Flooded Car Sales

A consumer alert from the insurance industry and Lubbock County leaders. The insurance industry estimates Hurricane Ike flooded around 100,000 cars, and there's no guarantee that damage will be reported.

Record rains here on the South Plains also put a few cars under water, so they're warning potential car buyers to check vehicles thoroughly before purchase.  "If you're looking at a vehicle, if you could see the title, if it says anything about damage, if it's in the name of an insurance company, that's a warning," Lubbock County Tax Assessor Barbara Brooks said. 

How to spot potential flood damage in a vehicle:

  • Search under the dashboard with a flashlight for mud, grit, rust or mold.
  • Search for mud and grit in the engine compartment, wires, alternator, starter motor, and power steering pump crevices.
  • Inspect the undercarriage for rust and flaking.
  • Be aware of odors, both musty and recently shampooed.

More warning signs:

  • The vehicle's title history shows it was titled several times over a short period.
  • No vehicle title exists.
  • Be wary of "curbstone sales" on street corners. TxDOT will verify a dealer's license at 1-800-687-7486.
  • The title is in an insurance company's name or has a brand such as: flood, salvage, or rebuilt.
  • The vehicle was last registered in a flood-affected area.

(Click Here) to check a vehicle's history.

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