This article will discuss why storm damaged car scams are hard to recognize and will discuss how to recognize them. It is important for preppers to be well prepared to make informed car buying decisions so as to avoid the storm damaged car scams.
Storms can inundate cars with a mixture of water, dirt, and even salt, if the storm is a hurricane. This abrasive mixture eventually can cause problems in vulnerable parts of cars. Examples of these vulnerable parts are the engine, transmission, drive train, as well as the fuel, brake, and power steering systems. Still other examples are electronic components such as engine computers and sensors. Such internal problems might be overlooked by a casual inspection of cars, the exteriors of which probably will be polished to look like new cars.
There are many ways that car buyers can avoid becoming victims of these storm damaged car scams. Car buyers do not have to follow all of the suggestions in this article, but the more suggestions they follow, the less likely they are to buy a storm damaged car.
One simple way to determine that a car is storm damaged is to look carefully at it and smell it. Look for mildew, sand, silt, and water stains. For example, even if sand is under the wheel well where it is harming nothing, sand is probably elsewhere in the car where it eventually will harm the car. Also, if a car smells of mold or disinfectants, car buyers should walk away.
Another way to spot storm damaged cars is to consult a free database from the National Insurance Crime Bureau or get a free vehicle history report. Those who do either of these checks will need the car’s VIN number.
Still another, more expensive way to spot storm damaged cars is to hire a mechanic to check the car for storm damage that eventually can cause it to fail in many ways. The mechanic should be checking specifically for storm related damage.
Dealers and private parties attempt to sell storm damaged cars not only in states where storms have struck, but also from other states that were not struck by storms. Those who catch car dealers engaging in the storm damaged car scam can help other potential car buyers by contacting their auto insurance company, or the National Crime Insurance Bureau (800-835-6422) to report the car dealer.
Preparing well to evaluate and buy a car is important. A car is a big investment. Also, storm damaged cars eventually will become unreliable. Driving a reliable car during a bug out can mean the difference between life and death.