KIYC: How to avoid cars that have been flooded

WOODBRIDGE - In the wake of Hurricane Irene, New Jersey's car market could soon be flooded with cars that were flooded.

Consumers could have a hard time telling the difference between a car that has been flooded and one that hasn't. Mechanic Kenny Wenzel says flooded cars are prone to serious electrical problems and other issues that often don't appear until months or even years after the flood damage.

Wenzel says that many times a flooded car will have clean carpets, but the oxidation on the seats and metal will still be apparent. He also says that there will be water stains on the underside of seats, which are less likely to be cleaned.

Resources that can help you determine if a car you're thinking about buying has been flood damaged:VIN Check:Compare the VIN number of a car you're thinking about buying with the database of cars that have been reported to have been salvaged or flood damaged.Autocheck: A vehicle history report database run by Experian. autocheck.comCarfax: Probably the best known vehicle history report database. carfax.com

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