How to make sure you don’t buy a “Flood Car” when used car shopping

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SUPPLY, NC (WBTW) – Officials warn cars which sustain flood damage, like the infamous red jeep, could make their way to used car lots.

Although officials with the National Insurance Crime Bureau say they saw more flooded vehicles with Hurricane Florence than they anticipate with Dorian, it’s important to be mindful before driving a car off the lot.

Ken Pedigo is a supervisory special agent with the NICB. He says important places to check on a used vehicle include the seat belts for water damage, look for rusted bolts and checking the head and tail lights. Looking underneath floor mats and on the side of the car are important as well.

Additionally, Pedigo says checking the trunk can help save you in the end.

“Remove everything from the trunk,” Pedigo said. “If it has a tire or spare tire well, get to the low parts of the car in on the sides of the tire well. If you find mud, leaves, debris, or moisture in any of those areas, that should be a big red flag to you.”

Pedigo says there are dealers who sell refurbished flooded vehicles, but they will be upfront and tell you.

“We recommend you do the VIN check yourself,” Pedigo said. “Get a Carfax or something of that nature. Do the background investigation because once you’ve got that title in your name, it’s all yours.”

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