I was stuck in a flood out in South San Francisco. The water came to Tire level. As soon as the car Touch the Water everything turned off. We did not try to start it right away as they said that that would be a bad idea. We waited overnight try to get a jump and then start it and it still would not turn over. I was wondering if it is possibly the starter as that is what I've been hearing? When the battery was not dead I had full power to the car such as lights radio etc. However we did find that the air filter was wet when we took it out but there was no water in the engine oil or anything. Do you know what this could be? And how to fix it? Please let me know thank you
My car has an automatic transmission.
It is possible that the starter may have gotten water in it and shorted out. The more concerning part of your question is that the "air filter was wet". If the air filter is/was wet, it is highly possible that water got through it and into one or more combustion chambers / cylinders. Even the smallest amount of water getting through the air filter into one or more cylinders can hydro-lock (seize) the engine. Water cannot be compressed by the engine like air can. Components like connecting rods can bend trying to compress the water. Bent internal parts will usually lock (seize) the engine. The spark plugs should be removed to check inside each cylinder for signs of water getting into any of them before attempting to replace the starter.
You may want to have a certified technician look into why the vehicle will not start before attempting to replace any components. depending on your insurance coverage, a seized engine due to flood MAY be covered by your policy.
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