Floods are the most common natural disasters that can happen anywhere in the world. Being a tropical country, Malaysia has rainy seasons throughout the year! Floods have accounted for more loss of life and property than any other type of hazard or severe weather. Unfortunately, one of our major properties that we cannot keep away from the weather is our cars and they are not very flood-resistant. Not only do floods leave cars covered in mud, but they can also damage a car’s structural integrity. These extensive damage can lead to costly repairs Yikes! The good news is that your car may still be salvaged! Here’s what to do after the waters recede.
Do not start the engine
Never attempt to start the engine of a car that has been submerged in floodwater right after the water level recedes! This may cause damage to your car’s electronic engine control unit (ECU), which can be rather expensive to fix. So don’t rush into this!
Leave the car to dry
Keep every door and windows open. Use towels to absorb water that may have soaked into the car seats and floor. You may even consider using a wet/dry vacuum to remove any standing water, if you have one. If possible, use dehumidifiers and fans to speed up the drying process. This will definitely save you from an extra headache that may stem from having moulds growing all over the interior of your car!
Perform a thorough inspection and examination of the damage
Check your car’s oil dipstick and air filter. If any of these have even slight droplets of water on them, do not start your car’s engine as those are likely to indicate that there is water in your engine! Do a simple inspection of your car’s brake pads and coolant reservoir as well. These are easily damaged and contaminated by water.
Remove all debris and rubbish from flood waters
As floodwaters in Malaysia often carry debris and rubbish in them, check every part of your car, both interior and exterior, for pieces of debris and/ or rubbish that may have been stuck in places such as your car’s underbody, tires or brakes. If these are too big or out of your reach to remove them on your own, seek for proper help instead.
Inform your car insurance company or agent
Call up your car insurance company or agent to notify about your flood-damaged car to file a claim with them. Your insurance company along with a qualified mechanic will check and uncover how extensive the problems caused by flood damage may be. The potential insurance payouts will definitely be a cushion to the upcoming repair cost assuming your car can still be repaired.
Call a professional for help
You will still need a professional mechanic to do a thorough and proper examination of your car. Get your car towed or have them dropped by your car to take a closer look at your car. They will be able to give you a detailed explanation of the damages and the types of repairs that will be required to restore your car’s road worthiness. They will also provide advice on whether the car can still be salvaged.