How to deal with a flooded car

Picture this: You leave your house to get into your car and suddenly realize you left the windows open (could be the roof if it’s a convertible) when you parked it the night before. It has been raining all night; the seats are soaked and there are puddles on the floor. What a nightmare!

A serious water infiltration problem in a sunroof can also allow a fair amount of water to enter. Or your vehicle could be caught in a flood and filled with mud… In this case, it’s an act of God, but no less frustrating.

To accurately determine the extent of the damage, you will need to deal with a specialist. Of course, your auto insurance company is there to help you: they’ll give you a report showing all the areas that need repair, the parts that need to be replaced, and an estimate of the cost.

Photo: Steve Poulin/QMI Agency

With this information, you can decide whether or not to call your insurer to pay for the job, minus the deductible. Your vehicle is a mess, finished? Protections called “all risks” cover all damages and, in general, you will be compensated quickly.

According to CAA-Quebec, the vast majority of flooded vehicles are declared total losses. This status is recorded in the file and in the vehicle registration document after a declaration by the owner, an insurer or an administrative authority. Why? Guarantee that the vehicle will not be put back on the used market, not even with the mention “seriously damaged”.

In summary, you should take your time to choose a good auto insurance policy, be aware of any signs of moisture or water infiltration… and be careful when parking your car!

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