CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. — After several major hurricanes, a new report says cars with water damage are flooding the market.
Car Fax says flooded cars on the road in 2018 are up nearly 50 percent from last year.
Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina are each estimated to have 5,000 to 25,000 cars with flood damage on the road.
"I knew I was driving a flood damaged vehicle because when I bought it, it said flood damage on the title," Brock said.
Mike's had no problems with his car, but he knows that's not always the case.
"I've heard horror stories about people having to replace transmissions and engines because of the water damage that manifests itself later, not immediately."
Mike says dealers are supposed to tell you if the car has any reported damage, from flooding or otherwise, but unless there's been an insurance claim there may not be a paper trail of the damage.
"A lot of these cars that you're talking about coming in from the hurricane probably weren't touched by the insurance company, they're just getting them, they're just flooding the market with these things," Brock said. "People have sold them, they don't want them anymore because they were flooded."
In Tennessee, a sticker is required on the car if it's been salvaged.
But even when you thoroughly check the car, you might not see symptoms right away, so always ask to see a Car Fax report and the title.
Mike says ask as many questions as possible, but don't rely on verbal answers alone.
"The as-is agreement protects the dealer," Brock said. "No matter what they tell you verbally, unless it's written down it means nothing."