With the approach of the rainy season, floods can occur anytime, and crossing through these waters can be dangerous especially if you don’t know do’s and don’ts. If you’re unfortunate, it could even leave major damage to your car from its mechanical and electronic components, to some of the fragile materials in its cabin. If you have no other choice but to cross through some serious flood, then here’s a list of things you must check after doing so, in order to ensure the good condition of your vehicle.
Check your brakes
Of course, one of the first things you must check is the brakes. The reason for doing this is because your car’s brakes tend to slip more and lose their grip after getting soaked in water. After crossing through the flood, find a safe place and then feather your car’s brakes a few times in order to ensure its responsiveness on the road. Remember, do not slam your brakes, as you could cause a possible rear-end collision with the passenger behind you. This is to ensure that your car’s braking system is functioning well as you continue your drive.
- Oil dipstick - If you pull the dipstick and the oil appears to be milky then it’s a clear sign of water contamination. If this happens to your car, many experts advise that you should have it towed instead of driving it to the shop in order to avoid engine damage.
- Air filters - Aside from the oil dipstick, you must also check your car’s air filters if water has entered through the intake. Likewise, if this is the case, then you shouldn’t continue driving as you’ll only end up damaging your engine.
In order to be sure, a thorough inspection can be done by your trusted mechanic. So for better certainty, then you better have it checked at a repair shop for proper assessment.
Check the electrical and electronics
Aside from the two mentioned above, water could also enter the other electrical components of your car such as its fuse box and computer box. While most modern cars’ electrical connectors are water-resistant, there is still no guarantee that moisture will not enter and cause complicated issues like electrical shorting. That said, it’s best to check your fuse box and computer box if both components are wet or took a slight dip when you crossed the flood. When a fuse is busted you can refer to the legend usually found on the fuse box cover. On other hand, if your computer box is wet, just simply wipe it with a clean towel to remove as much moisture.
Inspect the interior
One of the most fragile parts of your car is the interior. Submerging your car through flood could allow water to enter through the door seals or undercarriage. In order to be completely sure that the flood has not affected your car’s interior, kindly take off the matting and feel the floor carpet and see if it's free from any moisture. If you happen to find it wet, immediately wipe down, wet vacuum, and air dries it as soon as possible. Remember to never let water sit inside your interior for too long.
What to do if my car has been flood-damaged?
Even with good ground clearance or wading capacity, driving through flooded areas requires extra caution and serious consideration, as making the wrong choices could lead to costly vehicle repairs or a total loss. If your car must undergo some repairs, just make sure to set aside a budget, or consult your insurance policy if it includes acts of god or acts of nature in order to save you from spending so much money.
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