Check Out Your Car for Water-Related Problems
If you live near bodies of water or experience heavy precipitation throughout the year, you should still watch out for the effects of heavy rains and flooding on your car.
Once you understand how various systems on your vehicle can sustain water damage in heavy weather, you'll know what trouble signs to watch out for and how your automotive specialist can fix them. Pay particular attention to the following four water-related problems.
Water plus electricity often equals trouble, not just for people but also for the cars they drive. If heavy rains or flood waters penetrate your vehicle, the water may seep into the fuses that govern the flow of electricity to various components. Blown fuses can cause lights, power windows, power doors, and other parts to fail.
On the bright side, your auto mechanic can identify and replace any water-damaged fuses with ease. You should also have your headlights checked at the same time. Headlights penetrated by water can grow dim and fail prematurely. If your headlights show signs of water infiltration or reduced function, go ahead and replace them.
If you drive in flood or severe storm conditions, water from the road may rise up into your car's engine components. If water enters the combustion chambers, it can place the pistons under abnormal pressure, causing them to bend or break (a phenomenon known as hydrolock).
If your engine starts behaving strangely or fails completely after a close encounter with water, don't try starting it again until an automotive technician has checked it for damage. This expert will inspect the automotive fluids, including the gas in the fuel tank, to see where water has entered and then make the necessary fixes.
A drive along waterlogged highways and flooded streets can cause problems for your car's undercarriage. The tires kick water up at the underside of the vehicle, which may then remain wetter than the rest of the car for some time afterward. Eventually, the accumulated water can cause the undercarriage components to rust.
If you can't avoid driving in wet conditions, you might want to invest in some kind of undercoating product that helps keep water off of your undercarriage's metal parts. If you've already developed undercarriage rust, ask your automotive technician whether rust removal or replacement of the rusted parts makes more sense.
Brake System Issues
Your brakes can make all the difference in your safety whether you drive on wet, slippery streets or in fine weather conditions. However, if you recently drove through deep puddles or over flooded roadways, you need to make sure that your brakes can continue to perform correctly even after they've dried out.
One brake problem associated with serious water exposure involves rotor warping. Your brake pads make contact with these rotors to generate the friction that slows your car down. When rotors hot from friction get doused with water, they may cool unusually quickly, which causes them to deform and lose some of their effectiveness.
Water from rain or flooding can also get absorbed into your vehicle's brake lines. When this happens, the mix of water and brake fluid boils at a much lower point than it should, leaving you without sufficient hydraulic power for reliable braking. Consider getting your brake fluid checked after driving through puddles or heavy rain.
Windermere Sustainable Car Care has the skill and expertise to identify and fix water damage or other water-related threats to your car's well-being. Call or visit either of our locations today if you suspect that your car suffers from water damage. Contact us today for car repairs.