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Water damage?

last night, i drove through about a 5 in deep puddle and my car stalled and now will not start. My sisters 02 Mercury Sable made it through the water without and problems. What could have possibly been damaged and what should i do?

If it turns over when you turn the key but does not fire, you probably got the ignition system wet. If it fails to turn at all, it might be hydrolocked.

You don;t say the year of this car, so we can’t provide specific advice. But, in general, if it’s ignition you’ll need to replace the ignition wires and distributor components (if so equipped). Perhaps even the MAF sensor. If it won’t turn over at all, you have bigger problems. You’ll need to purge the cylinders and the air intake system of water, change the oil and filters, replace the spark plugs, and hope for the best.

Open the engine air filter box. Is the air filter soaked with water? If so, you probably totaled the car. If not, it may be something simple and cheap.