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Thread: Drowned Pajero

  1. #1
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    Default Drowned Pajero

    Hi Guys

    Advice please... My 2003 Pajero diesel was drowned up to roof level in the recent Cape floods. It was standing idle at the time with the battery disconnected. What needs doing (apart from cleaning - everything covered in silt!).
    Eg. Air cleaner, oil, fuel??

    Eish!

    Thanks
    Alan Sampson

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Sad news!
    Insurance?
    Write off, IMHO
    2003 Mitsubishi Pajero 3.2 Di-d LWB

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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Just don't swing the engine. Play safe and first remove the glow plugs.

    At least all filters and oils.
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    The water-logged wiring harnesses would be my main concern.

    Claim from insurance, buy the wreck and break for parts.
    2003 Mitsubishi Pajero 3.2 Di-d LWB

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  9. #5
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    IMHO, write it off - to the roof ensures everything is well soaked.

    Any and all electronics will give you sh1t forever...contacts and wires will corrode and you will end up replacing every component in that car.

    I have worked on half drowned vehicles who were victims of poor boat launching, it was always a nightmare. Water gets in everywhere, the salts and fine mud wreak havoc with moving and electric parts.

    Best of luck!

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  11. #6
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    If you crank it you're done, it's gonna be in Hydro lock (water inside motor) Follow jfh advice, remove Glo plugs and or injectors (spark plugs if it's a gasser)
    Crank it over little-by-little until all cylinders are empty. Drain oil pan and replace filters.
    Take out carpets and leave doors and hood open in the sun for a month!.... While praying.

    If however, your vehicle was sitting on idle during the flooding and shut down by itself it's possible that the damage is already done when water entered the intake.

    I live in a disaster area on the Gulf of Mexico, Hurricane's are a threat every year for a couple of months.
    100 mph winds are common (that 160 km/h) with storm surge, like you guys are experiencing now.
    Be prepared for a major insurance premium hike.

    I am feeling sorry for everybody who suffered damage and or loss of life during this time, natural disasters like this is uncommon to your country.

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  13. #7
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Yoh
    You guys are war mongers


    First check if the engine is free of water. And there is no reason why it would have water ingress into the engine

    Then see if it starts.. and selects a gear

    If it starts, turn it off and change all the oils.

    Then treat it as a car that had its insides soaked.
    The insurance could help you fix that
    Last edited by Hedgehog; 2023/09/27 at 08:31 PM.
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    I will not crank it before the oil is drained (and water). New filter and oil. Then you can can remove the Injectors and get the water out.
    Frans van Achterbergh

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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    This is what i have learned since i had drowned my Ford Courier 4WD V6 about 20 years ago.

    Do not turn the engine over with the key, even if plugs removed.
    Put it in gear and push it first to get the most water out, then crank it.

    Remove the air filter , if there is water present, there will be water in the engine.
    If the entire engine was submerged, there will be water in it.
    If it stood like this for a short while, you will have to strip off the intake and tappet covers
    to clean off the rust and dirt. Flush the engine.

    The cambelt tensioners might have water damage if it was standing in water for a while.
    The clutch should be fine if submerged.

    Drain all fluids, and replace. If milkshake, flush couple of times.
    The radiator might be blocked with mud.

    The electrical system will be a nightmare, clean the fusebox with plenty electrical contact cleaner.
    Your Alternator might be clogged with mud. Check all connectors. The ECU might be damaged.

    Remove all door panels and boot panels, clean properly in the crevices.

    If your vehicle was submerged in salt water , let the insurance scrap it.
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  19. #10
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    From experience, insurance does not repair flood damaged cars. They write them off from the start.

    Especially electrical issues, they may not show up now, but in a year's time when everything has had proper time to corrode, you may start having issues.

    The insurance is then married to this car, and they usually opt not to do this.
    Last edited by Kix; 2023/09/27 at 10:16 PM.
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  21. #11
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Do nothing other than informing your insurance. Let them take it away and assess the damage. They will decide if it is worth repairing. I honestly do not think they will even consider repairing it.....

    I will not want it after an episode like this. Electric and electronic systems do not like being dunked in water for even the briefest time and it will remain suspect for ever. I would not trust the electrics and electronics systems ever again.

    Imagine getting stuck in the middle lane of the N1 near the N7 interchange at 17h30 on one rainy winter's evening when the ECU calls it a day because of water damage

    OR

    In the CKGR on a Saturday afternoon en route to the southern part half way between Xade and Pipers Pan, because your crank angle sensor has eventually packed up due to being submerged in water 6 months before.

    It is a similar to dropping your cell phone into the kitchen zink full of water. It is not likely to survive.

    Electronics DO NOT LIKE WATER AND RARELY SURVIVE A SWIM!!

    I have just mentioned only two of a possible 100 or more such electronic and electric devices (just think airbags , door locks, ABS, ESP, on board computer and traction cotrol systems for instance).

    Remember to remove all you camping extras which the insurance will not give you a cent for in any case. Tell your insurance you will be doing this.
    Last edited by mvcoller; 2023/09/27 at 10:57 PM.
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  23. #12
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Yoh, some nasty and harsh comments here

    Iassume with a 20 year old vehicle the insurance pay out is going to be a little short to buy a new vehicle or something similar, that is if there is any insurance on it other than "third party fire and theft"

    1St, remove the battery and see if it takes a charge, chances are good that it is a sealed unit nd that water did not enter the breather. then take a hose and wash out any silt and dirt as far as possible.
    Take off the panels inside the vehicle especialy under the dash and see if you can open the ecu without damaging it, clean it and any other electronics with some electro clean, dry out with a small fan heater on low setting with doors open

    Second step is to drain all fluids, engine oil, gearbox transfer case and diff oils and replce with new fluids. Do Not try to crankk the engine with any possible water contaminated oil. Running for a few minutes is enough to damage bearings and create some gooey mayonaise and because it does not offer decent lubriation you could damage bearings. Auto boxes do not like even a touch of water in the oil it destroys the bond on the clutch packs chop chop, been ther and got the tshirt. Personally I would do a cheap oil just to see if it starts up again and to flush any residual water if any is left over before putting in good stuff. Empty the fuel tank and drain the system, flush up to the injectors with new clean diesel and do not forget to flush the diesel return to the tank, this can be full of water. I doubt that the diesel line from the lift pump to the injectors would be full of water as it is pressurised but for the cost of a cup of diesel I will double check this in any case

    Next would be removing the glow plugs, they are easier than the injectors and not as finnicy when it comes to sealing again, an injector that does not seat propperly gets what is known asblack death, you want to avoid this at all cost. Your battery is still out so turn the engine with a socket on the crank pulley nut and see the quantities of water comming out. Once you are sure there is no more water in the engine you could crank the engine bu shorting out the poles on the starter motor, this would only turn the engine without firing up ecu and other electronics.

    You will get to appreciate CRC and WD40 as moisture repelent use it on things like key locks and ignition modules, all places that could be contaminated by water, the dash would be 100% after removing and cleaning with electro clean.

    There is a ton of work ahead but with care and systematic attention to detail it need not be a death sentence for your beloved baby. doing it sooner ater than later limits any rust in the engine to surface rust and not something to worry about too much.

    Best of luck, holding thumbs for you.

    PS I doubt that the cooling system was dammaged but when she starts it might be a good ideea to replace the coolant as well
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  25. #13
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    On most 4x4`s sealed connectors are being used on all electric and electronic components. According to the posts around here this is not the case on the Pajero.

    I would do what Andrew suggested.

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  27. #14
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Was it fresh (rain) water or sea water? I presume sea, but if not, it might be OK.

    I would start by informing my insurance, but not lodging a claim yet. First I would pull the dipstick and see what the oil looks like. If it looks OK I would next take the air filter out. If that shows no sign of water, I would try turning the engine with a socket on the front pulley.
    If it does show signs of water in the filter or the engine doesn't turn with a socket, I would pull the glow plugs and the fuel supply and crank it, first a couple of revolutions with a socket, then with the starter.

    If it starts, shut down immediately. Check oil again. Also check the oils in the gearbox, transfer case and both diffs.

    Once you are happy with all of that, start it and check every single electrical system and switch.

    If it was sea water, I would then go around un-plugging every single electrical connection I can find and spraying them all liberally with electro-clean or some similar switch cleaner.

    Good luck!
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  29. #15
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    You need to log a claim or inform the insurance asap. Do not leave it as they can reject your claim because you took so long or tried to do xyz... they'll send an assessor and tell you the best course of action.

    If you don't have insurance then it's obviously a different story.

    Salt will kill everything, rust everything... everything.. and you've probably got a Snoek wedged under the floorboards that you will only discover in 2075 after vomiting 900 times!

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  31. #16
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Not worth the effort to keep, if you have assurance let them pay you out. I bought a car a few years ago un knowning to me stood in water after heavy rain above seats, I had endless problems with electrical failures, everything that did not had proper paint started to rust.

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  33. #17
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Quote Originally Posted by Hedgehog View Post
    Yoh
    You guys are war mongers


    First check if the engine is free of water. And there is no reason why it would have water ingress into the engine

    Then see if it starts.. and selects a gear

    If it starts, turn it off and change all the oils.

    Then treat it as a car that had its insides soaked.
    The insurance could help you fix that
    Are you saying there is no reason why it should get water into engine,
    well water will get in via the intake and the open valves into pistons, also up open exhorts valves, water can get into gearbox via breather pipe and engine breather pipe
    Last edited by clivemd; 2023/09/28 at 09:20 AM.
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  35. #18
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Connan View Post
    Was it fresh (rain) water or sea water? I presume sea, but if not, it might be OK.
    THIS...will make all the difference. I would not attempt a fix if it was salt water but with water up to the roof while stored, makes me think this was fresh water?
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  37. #19
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    Quote Originally Posted by clivemd View Post
    Are you saying there is no reason why it should get water into engine,
    well water will get in via the intake and the open valves into pistons, also up open exhorts valves, water can get into gearbox via breather pipe and engine breather pipe
    Take syringe, pull the pusher tube out halfway, dunk the whole syringe under water...
    Yes water could enter the engine, but unlikely if it was not running... You would see I said he must first check that it was free of water...

    The gearbox will have water ingress yes. I agree and never stated that it would not.

    The engine breather pipe? Do you mean the snorkel?
    Last edited by Hedgehog; 2023/09/28 at 09:46 AM.
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  39. #20
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    Default Re: Drowned Pajero

    With roof height water, your engine, gearbox, diff, etc. were submerged, with the associated water pressure. Water has gotten in everywhere, even things that you think are sealed. Water is insistent and will find any gap to fill.

    It will unfortunately not be worth the money to try and repair it.
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