What should I do if a vehicle in a flood suffers a water accident?

03 Jan 2022
What should I do if a vehicle in a flood suffers a water accident?
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🔍 The vehicle in the collision accident will be obviously damaged, and only need to replace the damaged parts to make the car rejuvenated. But vehicles that are soaked in water are different. In addition to engine failure, many problems will remain in the later stage.

⚠️ Vehicles that have been soaked in water are classified according to three degrees of flooding:
1️⃣  The first is called soaking when the water level exceeds the car chassis. This type of mildly soaked car means that the water in the car is lower than the height of the seat cushion. The parts that have been soaked in water generally include: carpets, seat tracks, seat sponges, seat belts, wiring harnesses, and door panel speakers. The repair method is to remove all the above parts, clean, sterilize, and dry them before reinstalling. Among them, the seat belt, seat belt pre-tension trigger (if any), seat motor (if any), wiring harness, door panel horn, Need to be replaced with new ones. In other words, the manual seat can be repaired, but if the electric seat can only be replaced with a new seat, then the mildly immersed car can be repaired without leaving hidden dangers. This kind of vehicle repair is still of practical value.
2️⃣  The second is that the water depth does not exceed the wheel or the water level exceeds the oil dipstick, which is called semi-bubble. This type of moderately soaked car means that the water in the car has submerged the height of the armrest box, which is about the height of the driver's waist. The part that has been soaked generally includes the lightly soaked part, the shift lever, the lower part of the center control panel, Electronic handbrake button (if available), transmission circuit, in-vehicle fuse box (lower installation position for some models), window lifter motor, window button, air-conditioning fan, side airbag (lower installation position for some models or seated In the chair). The repair method is to first carry out a lightly soaked project and replace all other wading parts. Starting from the moderate water exposure, a large number of electronic devices have been wading through the water, and the vehicle has been seriously damaged. The owner should measure the remaining value of the vehicle and the maintenance cost, and then consider whether to repair it.
3️⃣  The third is that the water level exceeds the hood and the dashboard is called full bubble. This type of heavily soaked car means that the accumulated water in the car has been flooded with the instrument panel or above, so it can be inferred that all accessories except the roof are wading, and the whole car's water soaking will damage the power system, electronic system, vehicle wiring and External covering parts and so on, it is worth noting that new cars now have more electronic equipment than before. The maintenance method is that except for the engine, transmission, plastic panel and other parts, almost all the other water-wading parts have to be replaced, especially the circuit-related parts. The internal structure is precise and difficult to clean, as long as a little water vapor is left. It breaks at any time. Due to the vast maintenance project, even if it is repaired, the potential hazard is relatively high, and even the probability of failure in the future is quite high, so it should be considered directly scrapping without repair.
⚠️ First self-check the degree of damage to the vehicle after being soaked in water:
1️⃣  Open the hood to check whether there is any sludge left in the water tank, air-conditioning fins, and the front panel of the water tank (looked down from below).
2️⃣  Check the small parts next to the engine, the charging motor, the starter motor, the electrical sockets, and the sludge at the joints between the left and right wheels.
3️⃣  The front and rear seats (upside down) check the springs and the brown cloth on the inner cover for residual sludge and musty smell.
4️⃣  Check the remaining sludge at the hidden seams on both sides of the rear trunk seat (spare tire seat).
5️⃣  Residual sludge from the structure, wires, and socket connectors in the dashboard seat can be used.
6️⃣  There is a clear line of sludge in the ''center pillar'' (covered by a plastic trim) between the front and rear doors, indicating the height of the car's soaking water (because there are too many dead-angle joints in the pillar, it is not easy to clean).
7️⃣  Use a screwdriver to dig up the front and rear windshield rubber (from the inside of the car). If there is sludge inside, the car will be fully bubbled (top off).
⚠️ What is the correct way to do after the vehicle has been soaked in water?
🔴  The most important point is not to start the engine again, because water will enter the engine from the intake port, which will cause the engine to stall. At this time, water will accumulate in the cylinder chamber, and the spark plug will cause the piston to be blocked by the water. The connecting rod is bent, causing damage to the engine. First, drain the water in the engine cylinder and the intake manifold, confirm the damage, and decide whether it needs to be overhauled according to the damage. The second is to check the gearbox, disassemble the gearbox case, check the valve plate, converter, etc. If it is checked that the amount of gear oil exceeds the expected amount, it means that it has entered water, then the gear oil and water To mix, you need to take them out and replace them with new oil. The black oil and gear oil mixed into the water will affect the performance of the car. If there is no problem with the gearbox, it is also recommended to replace vulnerable parts such as gearbox oil and friction plates. If there is no problem with the power system due to water soaking, huge maintenance costs can be saved.
🟡  Check other parts to confirm that the power system is not obstructed. It is recommended to start with the interior. Remove all the items wrapped in the interior such as the vehicle seat, gearbox casing, carpet, etc., and clean the water in the car. Clean and disinfect for the second time until the interior of the carriage is sufficiently clean. As for the models equipped with electric seats, replacing the motor is one of the indispensable items. When the interior is cleaned, what we have to do is to remove the door and audio system and clean it in the same order as the interior. After ensuring that the car is in a clean state, place the car in the sun until the water-soaked part is dry.
🟠  Next is the most critical step to clean up the water tanker, and it is also an important factor in determining the state of the future vehicle. That is to replace the entire vehicle circuit, especially the engine and chassis-related electronic circuits. line. The wiring harness of each model is very complicated, and it is more prone to problems if it catches up with the high-end models with abundant configurations. In dealing with circuit problems, we recommend replacing all circuits, including motors, speakers, various power supplies and sensor wiring harnesses, etc. It is worth noting that if ABS and other configurations related to driving safety cause an accident due to wiring harness loss, the consequences will be disastrous.
🟣  After confirming that the wiring harness is ok, I came to the computer on the car, also known as the electronic control unit (ecu), which is generally used to calculate instantaneous fuel consumption, mileage, temperature, and average. Speed, average fuel consumption, etc., and some can also be set to remind the maintenance, remind the driver to rest and other functions; if the vehicle after soaking in water wants to return to the original state, the trip computer must be replaced. A trip computer with correct instructions is related to the experience of the entire vehicle, so this part of the money must not be saved. 
⚪️  Finally, the exterior of the vehicle should be cleaned, such as sunroof gaps/water channels, light group gaps and chassis. The main task is to remove sediment and avoid more serious corrosion of metal parts due to acidic components in the water. If you buy some maintenance products and spray them on the metal parts, the effect will be better.

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