Listening can help you avoid accidents and claims

Berg’s Eye View Of Insurance # 11

LISTEN……..

My Mother once gave me, what I still consider, my favorite complement of all time. The back story is, as a teenager, I bought a used car, that like all older cars, was in need of TLC quite often. Fortunately, I worked in a service station. For the younger folks, that was were we bought fuel for our cars, where interestingly enough, a person came out to our vehicle and asked how they could be of service. That would include filling the gas tank as well as tire pressure and oil level checks. Also, windshield washing, belt checks and whatever the customer needed help with on their vehicle, as per the station owner’s instructions. Working there allowed me to spend time on my car once the list of daily chores had been completed. My car was spotless inside and out. (I really miss that.) Anyway, back to my Mother, in a conversation with relative, the subject of cars came up. She remarked that she had never known anyone to know a car better than I knew mu car. She said “he knows immediately if anything isn’t right, just by listening to it as it goes down the road”. Cue the big smile here. I had learned the best way to make sure my old car got me from one place to another, was listen to what it was telling me, by the sounds it did and didn’t make. Well, what am I trying to say here? I’m saying listening to our cars, motorcycles, boats, lawnmowers, snow blower can often tell us about things that might be going on with them long before they need major repairs.

It might be harsh now days, to suggest not having ear buds in or headphones on, when mowing the lawn or similar activities! I find that by not doing so I can hear the lawnmower motor and blades and with practice you can tell when everything is not right. Slipping belts, out of balance blades or motor malfunctions and other issues can be detected once you learn what it should sound like and then when it doesn’t.

What does this have to with insurance????

Home insurance: If you’re listening, you might hear your water heater start to make strange noises prior to bursting and flooding your basement. A water leak starting or getting worse that maybe a sign of other plumbing problems. A furnace that might be operating badly, that could become a fire later or a carbon monoxide hazard. A light switch or outlet may be arcing and could create a shock or fire concerns.

Auto Insurance: If you’re listening you may hear tire or wheel sounds that could be a cause of an accident. Motor or exhaust noises that might prevent again accidents or death due to poisoning by malfunctioning exhausts. Brakes that maybe worn out or in need of service will warn you with new or strange sounds. Also, you could also be benefited by listening for warnings from fellow drivers by horn or other means. Hopefully, they would be limited to kindly indicating you may have a vehicle issue and not your driving!

Listening…..what a great concept. By doing so, we can often learn lots of new things, know when we need to have our home or cars checked out and perhaps save our own or other peoples lives.

Have a great Summer !

Michael