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Spring Rain. IS YOUR HOME READY??

Spring is finally here and so are the spring rains.

So far, the rainfall has come at a slow and steady pace, rather than a lot of rain in a short time.

We’re Off To A Good Start

This is a good way to start the spring rainy season!

Why?

Because of our dry winter, the soil along the foundation has probably contracted and shrunk, leaving a lot of large cracks. This makes it easy for heavy rains to run straight towards your foundation, basement walls, and footings.

What To Be Looking For Before Storms Start Pouring Rain: 

#1 – Is Your Sump Pump Working Properly?

Your sump pump is the most important part of your home’s waterproofing system. But is has to be properly maintained!

 

The impeller should be connected to the sump pump with bolts and may need a thorough cleaning to work properly.

To test your sump pump read 5 easy steps in our previous blog here: 

#2 – Is There Water in Your Basement?

Pay attention to any water in your basement or other signs of leaks.

Usually this is a sign of problems in other places, often on the outside of your foundation walls.

Which leads to the next question…..

#3 – Do You See Water “Ponding” in Your Yard?

Watch where the water flows in your yard, and pay special attention to any place you see standing water.

If there are pools of water close to your foundation, it could mean there’s a problem.

Check your gutters or downspouts to make sure they are cleaned out and working properly.

Also check the location of your discharge for your downspouts and your sump pump. We recommend these discharge at least 10 feet away from your property.

And make sure your landscape slopes away from your foundation. It’s common for the soil near the foundation to settle over the season, which could cause water to pool in any low spots.

What To Do If You Find a Problem

If you see any problems, you should get them checked out right away. Contact a local, reputable foundation repair or engineering firm for an inspection.

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Preventive Maintenance for your Sump Pump.

5 Steps for DIY Sump Pump Inspections

Before you start, make sure to unplug any electrical power leading to your sump pump.

Check for Debris in Sump Basin

Make sure the sump pump pit is free from debris. You might be surprised a the kinds of things that can end up here as part of typical home live – children’s toys, items stored nearby that fall in, etc.

Anything that falls into the basis can get into the sump pump unit and interfere with moving parts, particularly the float mechanism. The float mechanism has a key role in sump pump operation, so be sure there is nothing interfering with it.

Test the Float

Fill the sump pump pit with water and make sure the float starts and stops the sump pump as designed.

Inspect the Check Valve

The check valves ensure that when the sump pump shuts off, no water will go back into the sump pump pit. However, sometimes these are improperly installed.

There is an arrow on the check valve that points in the direction the water is supposed to flow, which should not be towards the sump pump.

Clean the Weep Hole

Some sump pumps have a “weep hole” between the sump pump and the check valve. You can clean this with a toothpick or other tiny object. Be careful not to break anything into the weep hole.

Clean the Impeller

The impeller is a small filter that can become clogged. If your sump pump has stopped running suddenly or is making a whining noise, this could be the problem.

If you are not mechanically minded, call a reputable local foundation expert or contractor to test your sump pump for you.

Summertime=HOT! Make sure your employees are protected.

Hot summer weather can lead to heat stroke for employees working outdoors
It’s getting hot outside!
Every year, dozens of workers die and thousands more become ill while working in extreme heat or humid conditions according to OSHA.

There are a range of heat illnesses that can affect anyone, regardless of age or physical condition.
If your commercial policyholders have employees working in extreme heat and high temperatures, a heat illness prevention program should be established.
 OSHA’s Occupational Exposure to Heat page explains what employers can do to keep workers safe. The page also includes resources for specific industries and OSHA workplace standards.
Business Insurance customers should educate workers and supervisors about the hazards of heat exposure and their prevention.
Topics should include:
  • How to recognize common signs and symptoms.
  • Heat-related illness prevention procedures.
  • Drinking small quantities of water often.
  • Importance of acclimatization.
  • Immediate reporting and responding to signs or symptoms.
Policyholders can also have vital safety information immediately available with the OSHA-NIOSH Heat Safety Tool.  This App allows them to calculate the heat index for their worksite, and, based on the heat index, displays a risk level to outdoor workers.
to download the app.
Already a Farmers Insurance Business Client?  Enhance your Safety Program? Register at www.MySafetyPoint.com

Business Owner with Commercial Autos?

Here are a couple of quick tips for your commercial auto insurance, your employees and your business:

**When you hire drivers, make sure that you hire safe ones. Remember that your drivers represent your business when they are on the road. Once they are on board, you may want to train your drivers regarding best practices, such as the ones described below.

**It’s best to focus all of your attention on the road. Did you know that engaging in visual-manual sub tasks (such as reaching for a phone, dialing and texting) associated with the use of hand-held phones and other portable devices increases the risk of getting into a crash? Avoid anything that can distract you while driving.

**Maintain safe equipment. Well-maintained vehicles are not only safer, they can help you save money.

**Always, always wear your seat belt. Seat belts reduce serious crash-related injuries and deaths. It is sad to hear of accidents that injured people who might have otherwise been protected had they been wearing seat belts.

As always if you have a question on a commercial policy or would like more info on policies that Farmers Insurance offers, give us a call at 816-795-5977, email at jolson3@farmersagent.com. or just fill out this form.

 

No matter what you think you don’t have FULL COVERAGE for your auto insurance. Your agent lied to you.

The reason your last agent focused your attention on your car by saying you have FULL COVERAGE is to distract you from the policy having low liability coverage.
 
In reality, there is no such thing as FULL COVERAGE. FULL COVERAGE is never once mentioned in your auto policy. You are only covered up to the limits you have chosen to purchase.
 
Your personal liability and uninsured motorist coverage are the MOST IMPORTANT. If you want your car fixed too, we’ll add comprehensive and collision to the policy. Then we’ll use the deductibles as tools to adjust the premium so the correct liability and uninsured motorist coverages fit within your budget.
Does this make sense?
 
The term FULL COVERAGE = FOOL’S COVERAGE.
We are making your smarter about your insurance.
 
We are Farmers bum ba dum bum bum

2016-Will be a Fabulous Year!

From theJon Olson AgencyFarmers Insurance & Financial Services.png

We wish you and your family a very successful and prosperous 2016!

We still have a few 2016 pocket calendars (approximately 3″ x 5″) and 2016 magnets (approximately 4″ x 4″) left.  Leave a comment, drop by our office,  or send us an email to jolson3@farmersagent.com if you’d like one.

2016 calendars

 

 

Keys To Great Holiday Travel

Are you planning a trip during the holiday season?  If you’ll be hitting the road over the next few weeks (or anytime really!), here are a few important things to keep in mind.

BEFORE YOU LEAVE TOWN:

  • Get your oil changed and make sure your tires are properly aired up.
  • Leave some lights on in your home so it doesn’t look empty at night.
  • Call us to get a copy of your insurance card if you don’t have a current one.
  • Ask a neighbor or friend to pick up your mail or newspaper.
  • Pack some snacks! No one wants to be driving hungry (especially if you’ve got little kids riding in the back seat!)
  • Pack a car charger for your cell phone. Your phone is is your map and your emergency contact.  Don’t let it run out of battery power on your trip!
  • If you’ll be traveling in snow or ice, make sure to pack emergency supplies in your vehicle.
  • Plan to travel on off-peak days. It will mean less traffic, less stress, and a faster route to your destination.
  • Get a good night’s sleep! Driving fatigued is a leading cause of accidents.  Stay rested.

DURING YOUR DRIVE:

  • Wear your seat belt! Always.
  • Keep your gas tank at least half full. You never know how long it could be between gas stations or how bad the traffic could be.  Don’t run on empty!

 

And above all…be flexible!  Travel stress can ruin your holiday fun.  Plan to take your time and enjoy the ride!

 

Bear Up!! Helping Children Have a Great Christmas!

Hello everyone,

In efforts to ensure NO CHILD goes without a Christmas Gift in 2015, The Jon Olson Agency will be donating Bears this year to families in need.  This is our inaugural “Bear Up!” event and we are excited to share this with you!  Our goal is to donate 20+ Bears for “Bear Up!” so THANK YOU for helping and participating!

What do you need to do to participate?
Our Agency will donate two (2) Bears for every Yelp and/or Google review received.  So PLEASE take a few moments to review your experience with The Olson Agency and provide input on ways we can improve our clients’ experience when doing business with us!  Two (2) links are listed below for both Google and Yelp.

GOOGLEhttps://plus.google.com/+JonOlsonAgencyFarmersInsuranceIndependence/about

YELPhttp://www.yelp.com/biz/jon-olson-farmers-insurance-independence

We will be donating the Bears December 15th so that the children will receive them in time for Christmas!!

October Home Maintenance Tasks

Every month, we share easy tasks you can do to keep your home in tip-top shape all year long. So here are a few simple tasks you can take on in October!
Oct Blog 1

Pack Away The Air Conditioner – If you use a seasonal air conditioning unit, then now is the time to pack it up for winter! Make sure to spend a few extra minutes cleaning all the filters and coils well. It will keep the unit in great shape and it will last much longer.

Winterize External Plumbing Systems – It’s much better to prepare for freezing temperatures before it’s freezing! Winterize all exposed outdoor pipes and you’ll avoid the trouble when there is snow or ice on the ground.

Check Your Carbon Monoxide Detector – This is an important one! October is a great time to check your carbon monoxide detector to make sure it is performing well. Change the batteries, test it, and replace older units.

Clean Up For Halloween – Trick-or-treating can be a liability hazard! Clean up any loose tree limbs, fill holes in the yard, and remove any fire hazard Halloween decorations before kids are running to your door.

Save on Home Insurance – Homeowners Insurance is an important part of protecting your belongings. To make sure you have the best coverage, call us today for a free, no obligation quote.

2015 Championship Qualifier

We are excited to be announced as a 2015 Farmers Insurance Championship Qualifier. We have great clients and team members who made this possible!

Farmers  News Release

FarmersLogo2015

Contact:         Trevor Chapman

323-327-1896

trevor.chapman@farmersinsurance.com

 

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Farmers Insurance Agent Jon Olson of Independence

Named Among Farmers® Top Agents in the Country by National Insurer

Independence, Missouri (August 27, 2015) – Jon Olson, of Independence, has been named a Championship agent by Farmers Insurance℠ for his outstanding achievement and customer focused efforts by the Los Angeles-based, multi-line insurer.

“I want to congratulate Jon for his achievement.  On behalf of Farmers, we are proud to bestow the honor of being a Championship agent to him,” said Roy Smith, president of personal lines for Farmers Insurance. “To be recognized as among Farmers top agents is a great honor and we sincerely appreciate all that Jon does for our customers and our organization.”

Jon Olson was selected on the basis of a number of criteria, including his distinction in providing exceptional service to customers and a commitment to furthering the goals and standards of Farmers Insurance.
“This honor is a business career highlight and I feel fortunate to represent such a fine organization, which is committed to helping make customers smarter about their insurance choices,” said Olson. “I share this recognition with my entire office team who focus on helping every customer each and every day.”

About Farmers Insurance

Farmers Insurance Group of Companies is a leading U.S. insurer group of automobiles, homes and small businesses and also provides a wide range of other insurance and financial services products. Farmers Insurance is proud to serve more than 10 million households with over 19 million individual policies across all 50 states through the efforts of over 50,000 exclusive and independent agents and approximately 22,000 employees. Farmers Insurance Exchange, the largest of the three primary insurance entities that make up the Farmers Insurance Group of Companies®, is ranked No. 264 on the 2015 Fortune 500 list of largest companies.

For more information about Farmers, visit its Web site at www.farmers.com or at www.Facebook.com/FarmersInsurance.