March, 2022 | Boizelle Insurance Partnership

How to Improve Your Car’s Gas Mileage

It seems like everyone is dealing with rising gas prices. If you are interested improving your vehicle’s fuel efficiency, follow these five easy steps:

Get rid of excess clutter

Aside from the fact that driving a clean car can reduce stress, too much clutter in your vehicle can contribute to your car being weighed down. When this happens, your car’s fuel efficiency is negatively affected. As little as 100 pounds can cause your vehicle to not perform at its optimum level. To combat this, remove items such as backpacks, books, cargo boxes, bike racks, and roof racks.

Limit Idling

If you have a newer car, you might notice that it has built-in technology that allows it to gradually reduce its speed on its own. Some cars have capabilities that shut off the engine when the car comes to a complete stop. It restarts once the brake is released. Sitting idle in traffic actually uses up more fuel and gives off 80% more pollution than when your car is moving. The next time you come to a stop, or if you’re waiting for someone, consider shutting off your engine in order to save some fuel.

Drive the speed limit

More pressure applied to the gas pedal results in more gas being used. In other words, when you drive over the speed limit, your car’s fuel economy suffers immensely. And you’ll definitely have to make another visit to the gas pump sooner than you probably want to. So, whenever possible, use cruise control and certainly drive the speed limit if you want to improve your gas mileage.

Check your tire pressure

Underinflated tires can result in an increase of at least 3% when it comes to fuel consumption. Not to mention the fact that you are putting far more strain on your vehicle’s engine with underinflated tires. This is because it is taking more effort to drive the same speed as you would with tires with proper tire pressure. By making sure that your tires have the proper pressure, you are ensuring that they perform at their best and are protecting them from premature wear. Your vehicle’s owner’s manual can tell you the correct PSI for your tires.

Perform regular maintenance

Dirty air filters, spark plugs, and connections can all affect your car’s fuel economy. When you perform routine maintenance on your car, you are preserving the health and prolonging the life of your vehicle. Your vehicle will be far more efficient and will produce far less emissions. Make sure you are always replacing air filters, getting oil changes when necessary, and getting tire rotations when you need to. Your wallet will thank you for it.

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How to Protect Yourself and Your Family From Being Poisoned At Home

When was the last time you looked through your cabinets in your kitchen at home? Did you know that many of the everyday household cleaning products you have may be dangerous? It’s important that you read the labels and, if you have small children, talk to them about the potential dangers of these cleaning products.

Being poisoned is not always immediately obvious. There are four primary ways in which people can be poisoned:

  • When a poison is swallowed
  • A poison is splashed in the eyes
  • A poison comes in contact with the skin
  • A poison is breathed in or inhaled.

Here are a number of different cleaning products you should look out for in your home as they may be harmful if ingested:

  • Cleaning products containing various chemicals
  • Prescription medications
  • Vitamins and food supplements
  • Beauty products i.e. perfumes, hairspray, nail polish remover
  • Carbon monoxide gas from cars or heating devices such as a gas stove or furnace
  • Lawn products i.e. pesticides, herbicides, insecticides and fertilizer
  • Fluids used for your car i.e. antifreeze, windshield washer fluid or motor oil
  • Alcohol or tobacco products

Of course you want to protect your children and those whom are most vulnerable in your household. In order to prevent an accident from occurring, follow these tips:

Keep chemical products and medications in their original containers.

If you are going to take medication, make sure the light is on in the room you’re taking it in. Always seal your containers after use.

Install carbon monoxide detectors in your home.

Keep your cleaning products far out of reach of children and always keep them locked up and out of sight.

You may keep products in different areas of your home.

Kitchen: Food poisoning may occur if your food is not stored at the proper temperature. If you have children, use child-proof locks on your cabinets, so that young children are not able to access cleaning chemicals. Since a lot of these chemicals are stored in the cabinets under the sink, it’s a good idea to have these locks on these cabinets. Small children could easily open them when you’re not looking.

Bedroom: Everyone wants to have peace of mind while they sleep. Carbon monoxide in an odorless, colorless gas that is undetectable without carbon monoxide alarms or detectors. Put these in your bedrooms, so that you will be notified if there is a problem. If you have pets, make sure that any plants you buy for your house are not toxic.

Garage: Never leave your car engine running with the garage door closed. Paints, antifreeze, oil, and gasoline should be placed and stored far out of reach of children.

Bathroom: Medications can prove deadly if not handled safely. Keep any medications locked away and far out of reach of children.

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Why Should I Get Umbrella Insurance?

When you think of the word insurance, what words come to your mind; Protection, security, peace of mind. This is what every human being longs for throughout their life. People get insurance to protect themselves from experiencing financial hardship.

Umbrella insurance coverage is excess liability coverage, meaning additional coverage. If you have this kind of insurance policy, the limits on your umbrella policy will kick in once the limits on your auto, home, or watercraft insurance policies become exhausted. Umbrella policies come in handy when you are faced with an expensive situation.

  • You cause a serious auto or boat accident
  • Your dog bites someone
  • You drive your car into a building
  • You accidentally injure someone

Umbrella policies can cover you for situations where a home or auto policy cannot. For example, if you are ever sued for libel, slander, or defamation, an umbrella policy can help cover these costs.

Liability insurance only covers you for as much as is written in your policy. For example, let’s say you cause an auto accident where the driver of the other vehicle is seriously injured. Their injuries are serious enough to require lengthy hospital stays. In fact, their medical bills total $400,000. Your auto policy only covers a maximum limit of $300,000 in liability insurance. How are you going to cover the remaining $100,000? Your umbrella policy can cover the remaining costs. This is just one reason why it is such a good idea to obtain umbrella insurance coverage.

What An Umbrella Insurance Policy Won’t Cover

  • Damage to your personal belongings
  • Business losses
  • Criminal acts
  • Written or oral contracts
  • Intentional acts or injury
  • Damage due to nuclear radiation, war or terrorism
  • Communicable disease, such as a lawsuit against you for giving someone an STD

Umbrella insurance also covers you for situations that are not typically found in an auto or home insurance policy. For example, in this day and age, countless people use social media. If you were to post something defamatory about another person online, you could potentially be used by that individual. Other instances might include false arrest, imprisonment or detention, malicious prosecution, wrongful eviction or entry, and invasion of privacy.

Do You Need Umbrella Insurance?

Obviously, the choice is ultimately yours, but it is wiser to have excess insurance than not enough. There are just too many circumstances you may find yourself in life that are beyond your control. Additionally, if you are someone who is well known in the world, like a celebrity or someone with a high status in society, you may be a target for people coming after your assets.

How Much Umbrella Coverage Do I Need?

Determine the value of your assets. Umbrella insurance coverage—at the very least—should cover your net worth. This is what you could potentially lose should you ever face a lawsuit.

Another consideration you should think about is your future income loss. How much do you think you stand to lose if you are faced with a catastrophic lawsuit? If you injure someone in an auto accident that leaves them paralyzed and unable to work, that person may sue you for all of the future earnings they have lose being unable to work.

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Does Auto Insurance Cover Damage Caused By Hail?

Comprehensive coverage protects you against losses caused by something other than a collision i.e. theft, vandalism, fire, and damage caused by weather. Yes, this includes hail damage.

It is important to remember that, before the coverage contained in your auto insurance policy kick in, you must first pay your auto insurance deductible. This is the agreed upon value you pay out of your own pocket before your auto insurance coverage covers the rest of the damage caused (up to your policy’s limits). Figure out what deductible amount you are comfortable paying up front and then talk to one of our insurance professionals who will be happy to assist you in reviewing your coverages.

Hail can be pretty nasty and can cause a variety of damage to your vehicle. In some cases, hail can even cause enough damage to your vehicle to the point it is deemed a total loss. This occurs when it is determined that the value of the damage caused to your vehicle exceeds the value of the vehicle itself.

You can take certain measures to prevent hail damage to your car. First, pay attention to the weather forecast. Whether you listen to the weather forecast on your television first thing in the morning or you read the forecast on your phone app, being proactive in figuring out what kind of weather is going to be in your area is a great way to prevent any potential damage to your car. Also, if you have a garage, consider storing your vehicle inside the garage if bad weather is headed your way.

If you find yourself caught in the middle of a hail storm, follow these steps to ensure the safety of yourself and any passengers in your car with you:

Stop driving and pull over to a safe area

If possible, find cover such a garage or a parking ramp for overhead protection. In some cases, an underpass may be an option to consider, but don’t forget to pull over far enough to avoid traffic and to turn your flasher on, so that other cars notice you.

Park your car at an angle

By doing this, any hail is more likely to hit the front of your vehicle and your windshield is reinforced to protect you from rocks and debris. Your side windows are not.

Stay inside your car

Your own personal safety is more important than any damage caused to your car. Remember that during any kind of storm you find yourself in. Your car can always be repaired or replace.

Protect yourself

Cover yourself with a blanket while lying facedown inside your vehicle. Instruct anyone else in your vehicle to do the same to protect themselves from debris.

Stay connected

Turn your radio on so that you stay up-to-date on current weather conditions.

How to Report Hail Damage

Call our office at 301-948-2010 to speak with one of our experienced agents who will happily answer all of your questions with regard to your situation. They can also help you determine if it is better to file a claim under your auto insurance policy or if the damage is insignificant enough to not proceed with a claim.

Remember, our experienced insurance professionals are always hear for you for answer any and all of your insurance questions. We know how unpredictable life can be! We’re here for you!

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