5 Ways Potholes Can Damage Your Car

5 Ways Potholes Can Damage Your Car

It’s officially pothole season.

Potholes can pop up on roadways during any season, but why do they seem so prevalent during the first few months of the year?

When winter is ending and spring is on the horizon, the weather is constantly fluctuating between mild and freezing temperatures. Rain, snow, and ice get into smaller holes and cracks in the pavement, and as the temperature jumps back and forth from high to low, the precipitation continually freezes and thaws expanding those pavement cracks causing others to form. As cars and heavy trucks drive over them, the asphalt chips away, thus creating potholes.

Potholes, no matter how small, can wreak havoc on your entire vehicle.  Here are 5 ways hitting a pothole can cause damage.

 

1. Steering & Suspension

Your vehicle’s suspension absorbs bumps so you can’t feel them when you drive. If you cause enough wear and tear on your suspension system, it could result in a number of problems with your steering, including: vibrations, noises when you turn, vehicle pulling to one side, etc.

 

2. Undercarriage

Vehicles that ride lower to the ground have a better chance of being damaged by a pothole. They can cause scratches and scrapes, that aren’t dangerous until they start to rust or leak. They can also rip off low-hanging bumpers.

 

3. Tires & Wheels

It’s no secret that debris from potholes can cause holes, leaks, and tears in your tire, but when you hit a pothole fast enough, it can also cause a complete tire blowout. Potholes can also damage your wheels by bending or cracking your rim. And if there is visible damage, you’ll likely have to replace the entire wheel.

 

4. Body & Exhaust System

Pavement debris and rocks can scratch the paint on your vehicle and cause rips and leaks in your exhaust pipes, muffler, and catalytic converter. If your exhaust pipes have been damaged, it can be a serious issue. Ripped pipes can leak exhaust fumes into the cabin of your vehicle and cause serious health issues (including death). If you hear a strange noise or lose power after hitting a pothole, there is a good chance your exhaust pipes have been damaged and you need to pull over.

 

5. Loss of Control

Lastly, one of the most dangerous consequences of hitting a pothole is that it could cause you to lose control of your vehicle. Losing control for even a few seconds, could not only cause damage to your vehicle, but could also be deadly for you and your passengers. That is why it is important to watch the road for potholes when you drive and try and avoid them.

 

Potholes are extremely dangerous for you and your vehicle, but sometimes accidents do happen.

So, what if you accidentally hit a pothole, is damage done to your vehicle covered by insurance? Typically pothole damage is covered if you have collision insurance. If you aren’t sure, call your agent and review your coverage today.

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

End of the Year Home Inventory

End of the Year Home Inventory

The Holidays are over, and that means it’s time to find room for all of the new gifts that you received over the holidays. The easiest way to keep track of all of your possessions is creating- and continually updating- a Home Inventory.

A Home Inventory is a list of the valuable objects that you have inside of your home.

It may sound like a waste of time, but this list will be your saving grace if there is a fire, destructive storm, or if someone breaks in and steals your belongings. Without one, many people have a difficult time pinpointing or recalling everything that might have been destroyed or taken, and unfortunately, that can delay homeowner claims or keep you from getting your full compensation.

So, when the New Year rolls around make the time to take inventory of your home and all of your new treasures. It’s easy! Just go room by room and document:

  • Electronics
  • Personal Care Items
  • Jewelry
  • Art
  • Kitchen items and appliances
  • Furniture
  • Carpeting
  • Beds and linens
  • Clothing
  • Sports equipment
  • Tools

Don’t forget to take pictures of the exterior of your home as well -photos are best from all angles- including the landscaping and any decks or porches- and also take note of everything in the garage, attic, or basement, like holiday ornaments, lawn and yard equipment, tools, etc.

You can choose to write everything down, but we suggest to use photo/video documentation of your belongings. To make the whole process easier on you we’ve created a Household Inventory Checklist that walks you through each possession you may have, so you don’t forget anything- you can even document the value. Just attach your photos to the document or put them in a folder on your phone and you are good to go! Click here for the checklist.

Trying to tally up what needs to be replaced is not something you want to do in the event of a claim, so taking the time to complete an inventory will be more than worth it. You can even use the time to get rid of the old and make room for all of the new!

 

Related Articles:

Too Late is Too Late: Why You Need a Home Inventory

5 Things Not Covered By Most Home Insurance Policies

Protect Your Home and Family- Know It. Do It.

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

 

Fall Preparation Tips for Your Home

Fall Preparation Tips for Your Home

Fall is the perfect time of year! The summer heat begins to fade, leaves don their annual colors, football games take over the weekend, and pumpkin-flavored everything hits the shelves. fall preparation

However, it also serves as a reminder, that as the days grow shorter and the leaves start to fall, now is the ideal time to look around your home and get prepared for the oncoming winter. Fall’s mild temperatures and adequate daylight provide an opportunity to check the heater, repair gutters, and add extra insulation to the attic. An early autumn storm or blizzard is no time to learn you have leaks or other problems.

The Insurance Information Institute estimates that winter-related damage causes over a billion dollars in insurance losses annually. So, enjoy the nice weather and your pumpkin spiced latte while you can. Just don’t forget to look ahead. Prevent your home from being a winter-storm statistic and make the necessary preparations to your home this fall.

 

Fall Preparation Checklist:

  • Have your heating system checked and cleaned.
  • Inspect ceilings, windows and outer walls for cracks.
  • Change air filters.
  • Check your pipes and plumbing.
  • Inspect your roof for wear or damage and clean the gutters.
  • Install weather stripping and caulk around windows and doors.
  • Seal up foundation and driveway cracks.
  • Check your fireplace and chimney for cracks or leaks.

Look around your deck or patio and yard. Now is the time to clean and store seasonal outdoor furniture and flower pots, drain sprinkler systems, trim trees and shrubs, fertilize lawns and mulch gardens. Before your lawnmower goes into hibernation, schedule a time to have it serviced. If your snowblower needs some TLC after its summer break, bring it in with your mower and tackle two chores at once. 

During the fall it is also important to make sure your home is fire safe. Hundreds of fires break out each day during the autumn and winter months. Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and make sure everything is working properly. The National Fire Protection Association warns carbon monoxide poisonings also climb during the fall and winter months.

 

Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detector Preparation Checklist:

  • Install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area, and on all levels of the home.
  • Test all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and replace the batteries.
  • Have all heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected.
  • Keep all flammable material at least three feet from heat sources.
  • Check fire extinguishers. Replace or have them serviced as needed. 
  • Know and practice home escape routes. 

A vital preparation step for any season is to review and understand your homeowners or renters insurance policy. Make sure you know what is covered under your policy, if you need to up your coverage, or add additional coverage for the coming winter months.

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty. We specialize in providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

The Drawbacks of Premium Paybacks





 

Joe Volponi, President & CEO of California Casualty, speaks about the insurance industry during the coronavirus with David Perry on the “Great Pause” online news program.

As other insurance companies jump to reduce premiums, during the pandemic, Joe explains why a long-term premium relief strategy, like the one California Casualty is taking, has policyholders’ best interest for the future.

 

 

How to Protect the Things You Cherish

protecting valuable posessionsDo you know the most popular time to receive jewelry? You guessed it – February.  Now, do you know if your homeowner’s or renters’ insurance policy protects your jewelry? Whether you said “yes” or “no,” you are correct.

Here’s why: Your homeowner’s policy only provides limited coverage on certain high-value items. You may not receive the full value if a loss occurs. Scheduled Personal Property (SPP) insurance, sometimes called a floater, provides additional coverage of valuables – above and beyond what your home insurance provides.

Here are some very important advantages with Scheduled Personal Property plans:

    • Scheduled Personal Property (SPP) offers much broader coverage for your precious items – if you misplace a set of earrings, they are covered; if a diamond falls out of a ring, or a guitar neck breaks, they’re covered.
    • There is no deductible if the covered items are stolen, lost, or damaged.
    • SPP provides a replacement for the actual appraised value of the item.
    • SPP usually costs about one to two percent of the item’s value.

And, Scheduled Personal Property insurance isn’t just for jewelry; you might need the endorsement if you have:

    • Fine art
    • Furs
    • Coin or stamp collections
    • Expensive cameras
    • Firearms
    • Fine silverware
    • Sporting equipment
    • Antiques

And even if you already have gold and jewelry or a rare watch covered with Scheduled Personal Property coverage, you may need a review. Gold and diamond prices have climbed the past few years and you may not have enough protection for their new value.

By nature, many of us are collectors of stuff, and much of that stuff is valuable. Whether you have purchased your priceless items from exotic locations around the globe, inherited them or painstakingly monitored eBay to find them, you no doubt want to protect them.

 

TAKEAWAY: Don’t wait until your precious items are lost, stolen or damaged to find out if you have enough coverage to replace them. Contact CalCas Customer Service today, at 1.800.800.9410 option 3, or www.calcas.com/customer-service.

 

Free Help If You’re A Victim Of ID Theft

Free Help If You’re A Victim Of ID Theft

When you purchased a California Casualty insurance policy, you received a valuable gift – free help if you are ever a victim of identity theft.

We realize that almost every stage of your life-journey can put you at risk for ID theft. From getting married, purchasing a new home, going to the hospital or registering children for school, your personal information can be grabbed by identity thieves and fraudsters.

When your personal identity has been taken, it takes an emotional toll and can cost thousands of dollars and many hours to resolve. The sooner you react, the sooner you can start regaining your good name and re-establishing your credit.

Having a trusted company walking with you can make all the difference. That’s why California Casualty offers free ID theft resolution services from CyberScout.

CyberScout is the nation’s premier provider of identity services, providing these services (and more):

  • Tax fraud support
  • Financial identity theft
  • Utility identity theft
  • Payday loan identity theft
  • Document replacement and break-in theft support
  • Travel identity theft
  • Child identity theft

California Casualty started offering the ID theft resolution services offered by CyberScout in 2006. At that time, few companies offered this type of help to customers, and many of those who did charge a fee. California Casualty wanted to make certain that all customers would receive identity theft resolution services at no charge and to make the process as simple as possible. Customers simply call the toll-free number for California Casualty, where a Customer Service representative verifies their policy and transfers them to CyberScout. CyberScout assigns a personal fraud specialist who works with our customers until the fraud problem is resolved. That means you have unlimited one-on-one access to a dedicated fraud specialist who will assist you in understanding credit reports, gathering evidence against the fraudsters, working to limit damages, and following up to make sure the problem has been cleared up.

With insurance from California Casualty, if you or a loved one’s personal information is compromised, you can rest assured that a CyberScout fraud specialist will get in the trenches to help speed the recovery process – placing fraud alerts, contacting creditors and sticking with you as long as it takes to restore your good credit.

CyberScout has actively helped 17 million households across the world with data theft resolution and education. Their testimonials say it all:

“We are very pleased with the help received after our credit cards and ATM card were compromised. We feel more secure after our CyberScout advisor’s help and advice.”

“My fraud investigator was an angel. She answered all my questions, assisted with calls and letters to retailers, assisted with a seven-year credit freeze and followed up with all closed accounts. She is truly knowledgeable, friendly and compassionate.”

If you fear you have been a victim of identity theft or an account takeover, you can take solace that you have the expertise of CyberScout, provided by California Casualty, to help you battle the criminals and restore your peace of mind.

TAKEAWAY:

Learn more about the FREE identity theft protection from CyberScout that comes with your insurance policies from California Casualty at www.calcas.com/Identity-Theft, or contact a customer care specialist at 1.800.800.9410 option 3.

Read Next:

How We’re Listening and Learning From You

Ways To Protect Your ID When Shopping Online

We’ve Got The Heart To Help, And Love Giving Back

 

 

California Casualty

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