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Beware of flood-damaged cars post-Sandy

Thursday - 11/1/2012, 4:39pm  ET

WASHINGTON - Hurricane Sandy flooded many cars up to their axles, but not all of those ruined cars will be junked, Ron Montoya, consumer advice editor from Edmunds.com says.

Cars that have had any sort of flooding will result in future electrical or mechanical problems and would normally be salvaged by an insurance company. But scammers sometimes take advantage of the heavily hit storm areas with plenty of abandoned cars.

The cars are moved far from the flood site and reappear, months after the storm, refurbished. But any car with that kind of damage isn't fit to be resold and is dangerous, Montoya says.

Prices are low because scammers have to move cars quickly in order to make a quick buck. Buyers are then stuck with a lemon.

To avoid buying a water damaged car, check for odors, stains, other signs of damage, and get a history report of the vehicle.

WTOP's Richard Day and Madeline Tallman contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)