Before You Cozy Up to a Winter Fire: Chimney and Fireplace Safety Tips

Now that winter weather has arrived, it is a good time to conduct routine maintenance on your chimney and heating system. Continue reading

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Are You Protected Against Water Damage? Survey Says… No

While most homeowners are rightly concerned about fire, theft and how to safeguard their home, new data from Chubb shows that the majority of homeowners are overlooking the single most common property-related loss: water damage. In fact, in a survey … Continue reading

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5 Ways to Strengthen Your Home’s Defenses Against Wildfire

In many parts of the US, wildfire threatens homes and businesses alike. According to the Insurance Information Institute, about 9.8 million acres burned in the 2017 period, and 8,700 structures were destroyed in Northern California alone.

A structure can be threatened in three ways: direct exposure to flames, radiated heat, and airborne firebands. According to the National Fire Protection Association, airborne firebands, such as ember fall-out, account for the majority of structures affected by wildfire. Embers are burning pieces of airborne wood and/or vegetation that can be carried more than a mile via wind and can cause spot fires and ignite homes, debris and other objects. Continue reading

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What Would Make You Switch Financial Advisors?

When’s the last time you thought about the relationship you had with your financial advisor?
For most people, that’s not something that regularly crosses your mind. As long as your portfolio performs well and your advisor picks up when you call, there’s not much you should be concerned about, right?
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Carbon Monoxide: The Silent Killer

Carbon monoxide (CO) is known as the “Silent Killer” as it is odorless, colorless and tasteless, yet can have deadly consequences. Carbon monoxide is a gas byproduct of burning fossil fuels in your furnace, clothes dryer, fireplace, automobile, portable heater, generator or other small engines and home appliances. Most issues occur when the equipment is malfunctioning or is in need of service or repair. Continue reading

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Could a Threat to Your Financial Well-Being be Lurking in Your Backyard?

Think about the last time you thoroughly examined your financial portfolio: did you assess all potential risks? Chances are you overlooked liability when conducting your financial review. Continue reading

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When the Power Goes Out, Can You Get Out of Your Garage?

Power outages are common occurrences in many parts of the country and their frequencies have been steadily rising over the years. Occasional outages can be a nuisance and disruptive to our lives but they can also pose serious life safety risks especially during natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires.

One way to help ensure continuous operation of garage doors and timely evacuations during power outages is to install backup batteries on the garage door openers. Continue reading

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Plant a Garden, Not a Fire Threat

Spring is in the air and the planting season is underway. Gardens are being planted across the country, yet there is an underlying threat that is not top of mind with many – the threat of a mulch fire.

Mulch is widely used in landscapes for both aesthetic and functional purposes, and is applied frequently in spring to help slow the loss of soil moisture during the hot summer months, discourage weed growth, reduce soil erosion and dust, and maintain a neat and tidy appearance. Mulch can be made from a variety of materials including ground rubber, pine needles, oat straw, shredded bark nuggets, composted leaves, ground recycled pallets, etc. However, despite its benefits, mulch can pose a fire hazard. Continue reading

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Shedding Light on Generators

Power failures can occur at any time of year. Extended power failures can be caused by natural disasters such as windstorms, ice storms, wildfires or earthquakes. Grid-disabling natural disasters can cause power interruptions longer than 24 hours for millions of customers.

Backup generators can make life easier during a power failure. The two main types of generators are portable and permanently installed. Continue reading

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Preventing Sewer Backup with Sewer Backwater Valves

One of the last things a homeowner wants to experience is a sewer backup. Not only is this unpleasant, but it can cause significant property damage and create health hazards. Fortunately, you can help prevent sewer backups by installing a backwater valve.

Backwater valves, also known as back flow valves, are an easy-to-install and economical solution to help protect yourself and your family from contaminated sewer water backing-up into your home. The backwater valve is used to prevent outbound sewer water from a home’s drain pipes from re-entering — “back flowing”— into the home. The valve contains a flap that allows water to exit the home, but closes to prevent the back flow into the home.
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