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  • Last modified 144 days ago (May 23, 2019)

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Don't get soaked!:Driving into floods or down muddy roads can lead to costly repairs

Staff writer

Flood damage is expensive and can cause irreparable damage to a vehicle, said Barry Allen, owner of Webster’s Auto in Marion.

“It depends how much water you get into,” he said. “We’ve had vehicles ingest water into the engine while running and damage it. It can be catastrophic.”

Flood damage repairs can run between $3,000 and $6,000, Allen said.

“If you have full insurance that’ll help,” he said.

One way to reduce the risk of being stranded is to drive a vehicle that doesn’t sit low to the ground, Allen said.

“Some of them are even designed that way,” he said. “They move the air intake into a higher position so the vehicle can go through water like that without ingesting it.”

Midway Motors mechanic Kurt Funk said he doesn’t see many cases of water damage a year, but it can have a negative effect on the electronics.

“Water getting in electronics can cause the circuit board and different things to start failing,” he said.

Getting water in the transmission differential can cause its own problems, Funk said.

“That can cause some rust buildup, and cause fluids to not protect like they should.” he said.

A more common problem than flooding is trying to cope with muddy roads, which can make travel more difficult, Allen said.

“You have to be really careful this time of year with going down the wrong road,” he said. “If the road’s base isn’t good, you can get stuck, or do damage to the transmission.”

“People will drive through the mud and get it in their wheels,” he said. “Then they’re getting vibrations because of the mud that packs in.”

Last modified May 23, 2019

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