How To Make Sure You Don’t Purchase A Used Truck With Flood Damage

If you are in the market to purchase a used truck this fall, you want to make sure that you don't purchase one that has any flood damage. Trucks with flood damage may have issues that you can't spot with a quick once-over, so look for these specific signs that a used truck has flood damage.


The first thing you need to pay attention to when looking for flood damage is how the used truck smells. Most used trucks that have been exposed to a flood are not going to smell quite right even if the truck appears clean inside.

They may smell like mildew or they may smell a little sour. They may even smell a little overwhelmingly like oil or fuel, as flood damaged vehicles are generally exposed to these substances in the flood water.


Next, make sure that you look really carefully at the inside of the vehicle. Pay attention to what is new inside of the vehicle and what is old. For example, in a flood damaged vehicle, the carpet may have been pulled out and replaced, while the seats are still old. This work may have been done to hide or fix the damage of the flood. If any part of the interior looks like it has been redone while other parts were left alone, be sure to ask why.

You also need to keep your eye open for moisture and water. Moisture and water can hide in unusual places long after a truck has been cleaned up from a flood. For example, turn on all the lights inside of the vehicle and make sure that there is not any water beads inside any of the lights. Check inside of all the compartments, including the glove compartment, middle console, and compartments on the side of the door. Dirt and moisture may still be lurking in these locations and can be a clear indication of flood exposure.


Finally, make sure that you do a little research. Be sure to obtain the used truck's vehicle identification number and obtain a history report for the vehicle. It may tell you that your vehicle has sustained water damage and it may give you hidden signs that the vehicle has undergone flood damage.

If a vehicle has been registered in three or four states back to back, that is another sign that something is suspicious about the vehicle.

You should also pay attention to the states where the vehicle was registered and had work done and cross check that with your knowledge of floods. For example, there was large flooding in Louisiana this summer, and it would be reasonable to ask about flood damage to any used truck whose VIN places it in Louisiana at that time.

Be sure to utilize your sense of sight, smell and logic when shopping for a used truck this fall. There are lots of great used trucks on the market that don't have flood damage, so don't settle for one that does. To start your search, check out a dealer like Airport Auto RV Pawn & Sales.