A vehicle in Caloundra’s Aura estate which suffered storm damage earlier this month.
A vehicle in Caloundra’s Aura estate which suffered storm damage earlier this month.

Warning to bargain hunters sussing out ‘hail cars’

THE RACQ has warned car buyers looking for a bargain to beware of "hail sales", after thousands of vehicles were damaged when destructive storms hit parts of southeast Queensland last week.

The storms that savaged the region have exceeded $60 million in damages.

But head of technical and safety policy, Steve Spalding, said hail affected vehicles could be more trouble than they were worth.

"It's important buyers do their research and have all the facts before purchasing an old or a new hail damaged car," Mr Spalding said.

"What might look like a bargain could turn out to be a costly purchase once you factor in repairs.

"If the discount off the purchase price, plus the cost of repairs doesn't work out cheaper than the normal sale price, then think carefully before jumping in on a 'hail sale'.

"Also keep in mind thousands of vehicles were damaged in these storms, which means there could be lengthy delays for parts if you choose to repair the damaged car."

Mr Spalding said it could also be difficult for buyers to get full insurance cover if the car was hail damaged and had not been repaired.

"Many insurers won't insure unrepaired hail damaged vehicles, which means the owner could run into problems later on if the car is stolen or involved in a crash," he said.

"Check with the dealer if hail damage will affect the car's new warranty cover as well, particularly if there are future problems related to water entry into electronics."


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