FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2019
When Andrew Singer brought home his newest collectible car in the spring of 2017, it failed the sniff test. Sugar the Singer family’s terrier, threw her forepaws over the left front fender of the 2006 Lotus Elise, and the yellow roadster advanced no further into the garage. Sugar smelled the spice of mice.
During the winter, as the result of the previous owner’s careless winter storage, the little rodents built a nest in the dashboard behind the speedometer. “They hadn’t damaged anything—just were hanging out,” Singer said.
Over a long winter, rodents can wreak more automotive misery per ounce than any car deserves, chewing up wiring, upholstery, and fabric. A popular mouse-fighting measure is to put dryer sheets in the passenger compartment. But some experts dispute the effectiveness, saying the smell may only offer an initial defense before mice get used to it. Mousetraps and mothballs on the garage floor may prove little more effective.
Singer has found an altogether foolproof defense for his collection. “The cat patrols the garage after dinner,” he said.
Rodent protection is just one consideration for those who decommission their vintage and collectible cars during the winter. Here are a few other tips for protecting that special car:
Wash & Wax
Wash and wax the body and give the interior a once-over to remove specks, globs, and splats that might have a corrosive effect.
To prevent varnish from forming, fill the gas tank and add fuel stabilizer. Doing this will thwart contaminants. One source recommends running the engine a few minutes to circulate stabilized gas through the fuel system.
Change the oil and filter, which are likely to have corrosion-causing agents. Top off the levels of other fluids. Changing engine coolant, transmission fluid, and differential oil is optional and proves just how meticulous one can be.
A nice, dry garage is ideal for winter storage. Even if the car is garaged, a vapor barrier on the floor prevents condensation buildup on the underbody and suspension. Sheet plastic or a tarp will do the job.
“If your car will be in storage for more than 30 days, consider taking the wheels off and placing the car on jack stands at all four corners,” says Edmunds.com. Where winter isn't too long, adding extra air to the tires will serve to prevent flat spots.
Leave a car with automatic transmission in “Park.” Leave a car with a manual transmission in neutral and chock the wheels. Either way, do not set the parking brake, which would result in brake pads “freezing” against the drums or rotors because of corrosion.
Remove the battery and put it on a tender until spring.
Car covers are worth the expense. Our favorite purveyor of upmarket car-care items describes their triple-layer cover in technical terms that made us think we’d found NASA’s website by mistake. The cover should be breathable and have a soft inner layer to protect the paint.
There are more elaborate schemes for preserving a special car in the winter. Some owners are so fastidious, they might advocate having it shrink-wrapped and sent to the International Space Station. But the list we present here is just right for the average person’s Saturday afternoon and will keep 99.5 percent of the problems at bay—especially if, as our friend Andrew Singer attests, the dog and cat are living up to their end of the bargain.
originally published by Hagarty Insurance
Posted 9:00 AM
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2019
Carve in a Clean, Dry, Well-lit Area
Wash and thoroughly dry all of the tools that you will use, including: carving tools, knife, cutting surface, and your hands. Any moisture on your tools, hands, or table can cause slipping that can lead to injuries.
Always Have Adult Supervision
"All too often, we see adolescent patients with injuries because adults feel the kids are responsible enough to be left on their own," says Wint. "Even though the carving may be going great, it only takes a second for an injury to occur."
Leave the Carving to Adults
Never let children do the carving. Wint suggests letting kids draw a pattern on the pumpkin and having them be responsible for cleaning out the inside pulp and seeds. When the adults do start cutting, they should always cut away from themselves and cut in small, controlled strokes.
Sharper is Not Better
"A sharper knife is not necessarily better, because it often becomes wedged in the thicker part of the pumpkin, requiring force to remove it," says Wint. "An injury can occur if your hand is in the wrong place when the knife finally dislodges from the thick skin of the pumpkin. Injuries are also sustained when the knife slips and comes out the other side of the pumpkin where your hand may be holding it steady."
Use a Pumpkin Carving Kit
Special kits are available in stores and include small, serrated pumpkin saws that work better because they are less likely to get stuck in the thick pumpkin tissue. "If they do get jammed and then wedged free, they are not sharp enough to cause a deep, penetrating cut," says Wint.
Help for An Injury
Should you cut your finger or hand, bleeding from minor cuts will often stop on its own by applying direct pressure to the wound with a clean cloth. If continuous pressure does not slow or stop the bleeding after 15 minutes, an emergency room visit may be required.
Originally published by American Society for Surgery of the Hand http://www.assh.org/handcare/
Posted 11:05 AM
MONDAY, JULY 1, 2019
With the kids out of school for the summer, it's the perfect time to take a family vacation. And by family, I mean the whole family – the dog too!
Traveling with your dog can be difficult, but with planning and a little bit of research you can make it a fun and unforgettable experience. Here are some tips to make sure your dog stays happy and healthy throughout all of your summer adventures!
Find Lodging that Allows Pets
There are a fair amount of hotels and rental homes that allow pets during your stay. Many online sites even allow you to filter search results so that you only see pet-friendly options. Before you book, call and confirm their pet policies – it will save you some trouble down the road.
Tip: Try a pet-friendly campground. With hiking trails and room to explore, it’s sure to be fun for the whole family.
Don't Leave Your Dog in the Car
Car rides can be challenging with a dog, especially if you are driving long distances. Leave someone outside with your dog if you stop to get food or go to the bathroom. Cars can get extremely hot when parked in the sun and, if left inside, dogs are at risk of overheating. Besides, it's probably time for a potty break anyways.
Tip: Some places allow dogs to come inside. Call ahead and plan your pit stops to make traveling a little bit easier.
Cars aren't the only place that dogs can overheat. Normal activities such as going for a walk can become a health hazard if you don't take the necessary precautions. Panting, loss of energy, lethargy, and a dry nose are all signs of dehydration and overheating. If you notice any of these signs in your dog, it may be a good idea for everyone to take a water break in the shade.
Tip: Bring a collapsible water bowl. You can pull it out to give your dog water and easily fold it up to store it once you are done.
Watch out for Paw Burns
A dog's paws are sensitive to heat in the same way that our palms are. Even if they don't show pain, walking on hot pavement can cause serious burns. Make sure to test the pavement before taking your dog out for a walk. Be especially careful in cities with dark, paved roads. If it's too hot for your feet, it's too hot for theirs.
Tip: Try walking in the shade. The pavement will be cooler, and so will you!
Protect Them from Fleas and Ticks
Would you believe me if I told you there are monsters in the forest? Tiny little monsters called fleas and ticks are parasitic to humans and animals. They live in heavily wooded areas and tall grass. Make sure to check your dog's fur after being outside to confirm they are bug-free. Once you get home, wash their toys and bedding to get rid of any stowaways.
Tip: Did you know that fleas and ticks can’t fly? Walking on short grass or dirt will make it harder for the bugs to get on you or your dog.
Originally posted by Foremost Insurance Group: https://blog.foremost.com/vacationing-with-your-dog.asp
Posted 12:16 AM
SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2019
Firework Safety Tips for July 4th
4th of July is a day where we celebrate the thirteen colonies claiming their independence from England and more commonly a day where friends and family gather for food, music and beautiful firework displays across the country. Many of us will also purchase consumer based fireworks to celebrate on our own, however these certainly come with risks.
Did you know that according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s 2014 Fireworks Annual Report by Yongling Tu and Demar Granados, fireworks cause a yearly average of 18,500 reported fires and resulted in over $21 million dollars in direct property damage in 2013.
Fireworks are also a leading source of emergency room visits each and every year on the 4th of July. Check out some injuries by the numbers below.
- Sparklers accounted for roughly 28% of all emergency room firework injuries.
- More than 33% of firework injuries are to the hands or fingers.
- Children 5-9 years of age were 2.4 times as likely as the general public to be injured by fireworks.
- Males account for 74% of firework injuries
- Only 6% of firework injuries are caused by public displays
Fireworks cause an average of 18,500 fires per year.
4th of July Safety Tips
- Sparklers burn at 1200°F – Don’t point them at yourself or others.
- Never light fireworks in hand; only light fireworks while they are placed on the ground.
- Never attempt to light multiple fireworks at once.
- Never allow young children to handle sparklers.
- Never light any fireworks that appear damaged or torn.
- Don’t take apart fireworks or attempt to make your own.
- Always keep a fire extinguisher and water source nearby in case of emergency.
- Never dispose of used fireworks in trash cans until completely cool.
Grill Safety Tips:
The 4th of July just isn’t the same without sharing some amazing BBQ with your friends and family. Be sure to check for the following before throwing those steaks, burgers and dogs on the grill.
- Always check your grill’s hoses for cracks and leaks.
- Never grill indoors or near surfaces that can catch fire.
- Keep the grill at least two feet away from decks, siding and other surfaces.
We wish everyone a very happy and safe 4th of July celebration.
originally published by Mammoth Restoration http://mammothrestoration.com/
Posted 9:08 PM
THURSDAY, MAY 2, 2019
After a storm hits your town, and you're left with property damage to your home, chances are you;re going to need a contractor to repair the damage. While many contractors are reputable and perform quality work, there are those that have questionable intentions. A recent example of a contractor scam involves storm chasers.
What is a storm chaser?
You may know them as individuals who pursue severe weather conditions. When it comes to property repair, the term often refers to contractors who follow severe weather events, anticipating a large amount of repair work to be done. While many of these contractors are truly trying to help those in need after a storm, others are looking to exploit vulnerable homeowners. They are a contributing factor to roofing scams across the U.S.
A storm chasing contractor will watch weather reports, waiting for severe weather like a tornado, hail storm, or windstorm to hit a region. After the storm hits, the contractor will get a crew together and travel to the affected area. They often use aggressive marketing tactics to get business from the local community. The scammers will complete a rush job and will not be available in the future when the roof starts to fail.
What are warning signs of a storm chaser?
Look for red flags that may indicate you're dealing with a storm chaser. Be cautious of contractors:
- From out-of-town, or even from out-of-state. Check for the company's physical address. If only a P.O. Box is listed, they may not have a physical location in the area and are set up temporarily.
- Offering to repair storm damage at a fast pace and at little cost to the homeowner. They will encourage homeowners to use their homeowners insurance for the damage.
- Some contractors may ask you to sign over your insurance benefits to speed up the process. Be cautious of these "post-loss assignment" contracts, and obtain legal advice before signing one.
- Asking for cash payment upfront.
What can you do to ensure a contractor is reputable?
To lower your chances of being scammed, make sure you do your research. Ask these questions before making any commitments:
- Is the contractor visiting your door unsolicited? This may indicate a storm chaser is looking for business.
- Can the contractor provide references from previous customers in the area?
- Does the contractor have valid insurance and licensing required by the state or local government?
- How much experience do the contractor and crew have?
- Are quality materials being used in the repair?
- Can you pay with credit card or check? Paying with a cash deposit or cash in-full is a warning sign of a scammer.
- Will a warranty accompany the work? A scammer will often leave town right after the repair, leaving you with no support if there are problems with the roof in the future.
- Is the repair work a good deal only if you sign today? Don't feel pressure to sign anything before you've done your research. Often scammers will offer what sounds like a great deal on a repair, hoping you'll make a hasty decision.
And if you're concerned about your homeowners policy coverage of the repair in question, give your agent a call.
originally published by Goodville Mutual Casualty Company
Posted 7:17 AM