Hurricane Florence's torrential blow to the Carolinas could create some nasty ripples for car buyers in Northeast Ohio.

The Greater Cleveland Automobile Dealers’ Association (GCADA) is urging consumers to beware of storm-damaged vehicles popping up in the Northeast Ohio marketplace without required disclosure in the weeks and months ahead.

"While our hearts go out to the victims of the flooding caused by Hurricane Florence, there are bound to be flood damaged vehicles that enter our market ... through unscrupulous business people and private citizens who are able to wash titles and otherwise circumvent the titling process,” said GCADA President Louis A. Vitantonio in a news release.

Water, and especially salt or brackish water from storm surge, can have a devastating impact on a vehicle’s electrical systems, including its airbag sensors. It can also make many other safety features prone to failure, causing the vehicle to become unsafe or not roadworthy. In addition, structural components could be prone to corrosion.

Vitantonio recommended buying a certified used vehicle through a franchised new vehicle dealer, but cited these tips from the National Automobile Dealers Association for those who choose to pursue a private purchase:

• Check a vehicle's title history using the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s VinCheck or the National Motor Vehicle Title Information System or a commercially available vehicle history report service, such as Experian or Carfax.

• Examine the interior and the engine compartment for evidence of water and grit from suspected submersion.

• Check for recently shampooed carpeting.

• Look under the carpeting for water residue or stain marks from evaporated water not related to air-conditioning pan leaks.

• Inspect for interior rust under the carpeting, and inspect upholstery and door panels for evidence of fading.

• Check under the dash for dried mud and residue, and note any mold or a musty odor in the upholstery, carpet or trunk.

• Inspect other components, including wiring, for rust and mud as well as flaking metal not normally found in late model vehicles.