4/18/19 10:44 a.m.

So I have chance to buy a 2017 or 2018 Honda Civic SI sedan for 10k, less then 100 miles. The car was at a dealer during the Houston flood, water got up to the headlights. It runs drives fine, no check engine lights, only thing wrong is the passenger side power seat doesn’t work. So is it worth the risk? 

The0retical UberDork
4/18/19 10:58 a.m.

AAZCD did a pretty excellent writeup about where the trouble points were on his flood damaged Boxster.


I'd probably also want to see inside the front and rear quarter panels behind the splash guards to look for sediment.

79rex New Reader
4/18/19 11:06 a.m.

Id expect rusting from the inside out in a few years.  Id pass on it if it were me.

RacetruckRon Reader
4/18/19 12:01 p.m.
Furious_E UltraDork
4/18/19 12:46 p.m.

While that might be a good deal for a near-new SI, $10k is still WAY more than I would feel comfortable gambling on a car that's previously gone snorkeling. I do not like fixing rust and electrical issues.

docwyte UltraDork
4/18/19 5:03 p.m.

I wouldn't even consider it.

TJL Reader
4/18/19 5:23 p.m.

Is it on a salvage title? 

 i agree that 10k is a little spicy for a gamble. 

lockedyota New Reader
4/18/19 8:43 p.m.

Yes it’s a salvage title, I have been very Leary of buying it, but the temptation of a new car for 50% off is very tempting. But I think I’m going to have to pass! 

Advan046 UltraDork
4/19/19 7:39 p.m.

What is your purpose for the car?

Are you Honda experienced? As in you have taken Hondas apart and modified them?

Are you willing to fully dismantle and clean/inspect the car? As in all trim out, transmission out, engine on a stand? 

If you think of the car as a ten year old used car with a timing belt and trans rebuild due and odd behavior from the electronic systems it will be more realistic of a purchase price analysis.

If you go into it knowing it is a major gamble then cool. 

stuart in mn
stuart in mn MegaDork
4/19/19 8:08 p.m.

Any part of the electrical system (wiring harness, terminations, components) that was submerged is probably going to have hidden corrosion.  Flood water in Houston would be salty, plus full of all other kinds of nasty contaminants.  Body cavities will have the same issue.

AAZCD Reader
4/19/19 9:02 p.m.
lockedyota said:

Yes it’s a salvage title, I have been very Leary of buying it, but the temptation of a new car for 50% off is very tempting. But I think I’m going to have to pass! 

Texas has a couple different types of salvage title. Some can be rebuilt, some can't. We really don't have enough information to know if it's a good deal or not. I expect it's not.

Can you verify if there was any salt water? Was the car immediately cleaned/dried/tested after the flooding? Are the parts that weren't effected by flooding worth more than the cost of the car?

When I took on my Boxster, I had a large collection of parts to replace the electronics, a full set of factory shop manuals, and I had already disassembled one down to almost every nut and bolt. It was still a big risk.

dxman92 Reader
4/20/19 1:17 a.m.

Pass with a capital Pno!!

Antihero Dork
4/20/19 1:20 a.m.

If it was stupid priced, say like....3k....sure...but 10k can buy you a whole lotta car that hasnt been submerged

Brett_Murphy UltimaDork
4/20/19 11:19 p.m.

I wouldn't buy a flood car unless I planned to take most of it apart and make it a dedicated track car.

Even then, it would have to be a much better deal than that. Like a 3 year old Corvette for 10k kind of deal.

Knurled. MegaDork
4/21/19 7:49 a.m.

I would avoid.  The problem isn't mecessarily "corrosion" from the water, exactly.  Flood water is not clear swimming pool water, it's dark and gritty and when the water leaves (even if it was pulled right out of the water after five minutes) it leaves the fine grit and silt behind.  In the seat tracks.  In the switches.  In the control cables.  In blend doors. Not just the actuator motors, but the pivots on the doors in the HVAC box.  Everything that moves.


Things may work fine now but there will be greatly accelerated wear on all SORTS of things that you don't normally think of as wear items.

Daylan C
Daylan C UltraDork
4/22/19 4:13 a.m.

I just walked on a deal because I didn't feel right paying 5k for a Mustang I only suspected might have been flooded. Even though similar deal, it ran and drove fine and everything seemed to work. In my case the poor attitude and generally shady vibe I got from the owner of the lot really didn't help.

Our Preferred Partners