Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car parts that get damaged while driving through water

asked by on

Driving through flooded streets. What underside car parts are damaged due to the water submersion versus just water spray--such as electronic power steering, hub, brakes, control arms etc?

When you drive through water, the electronic parts should really never get wet because it can damage them. But, with that said, the electronic power-steering systems are sealed pretty well from water. They have got seals all over. Unless, it’s an old car and the seals are all worn out, water exposure is not really going to hurt them for a short period of time.

The main thing with the water submersion that you have to worry about is the differential, the automatic transmission, and the engine. You will want to avoid water sucking into these. Water in those things can absolutely destroy everything.

The wheel bearings will get damaged over a period of time. But if you just throw a little bit of water, the wheel bearings are packed with grease so it won’t hurt them. Unless they are soaked for a long period of time or you drove through a whole bunch of water. Let’s say you have a tall vehicle, and it could make it through the water. If you’re driving for 20-30 minutes in the water, the grease on the bearings is going to get water in, especially if it is the soft water. The soft water is going to start eating the stuff up and you are going to have to re-pack the bearings with grease or put a new bearing in.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Car parts that get damaged while driving through water

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Bearings in AC are making noise , 2011 Volkswagen Jetta

I am not quite clear which bearings or other components you may be hearing. The most likely noises coming from the engine compartment would be the AC compressor clutch bearing and the compressor itself. While the clutch bearing is much...

Q: 2004 Nissan Xterra rotor is not turning

Hi there. It does sound you have a broken timing belt. But before you immediately go out to replace the timing belt, the cover should be removed and the belt inspected to confirm that it is actually broken. Even after...

Q: Noisy frame bushing on the right side

Hey there. The upper and lower control arm or sway bar bushings along with the upper and lower ball joints are all common wear components on the front end causing this noise.. The front end would need to be lifted...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...