Jet Ski Safety

Jet Ski Safety

 

All this month we are looking at ways to be safe while using your summer toys! Check out our prior podcasts on motorcycles and ATVs!

Thanks to JetSki.com, they have a great article from the Automobile Club of Southern California filled with tips on how to be safe while using a jet ski (or other personal watercraft). Be sure to check out the entire article for more tips than what we shared today!

– Check the engine compartment to make sure the battery is secure/cables are tight, check the fuel lines for cracks/leaks.

– Make sure the fire extinguisher onboard is not expired/damage

– Operate the jet ski as if you were driving a car/motorcycle, be aware of your surroundings and try to minimize any distractions.

– Don’t stand on the watercraft while it is moving (unless the watercraft requires you to stand).

– Don’t use drugs/alcohol while operating a watercraft, there could be local/state/federal consequences if you are found operating while intoxicated.

 

Make sure you read the rest of the article for more tips!

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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ATV Safety

ATV Safety

All this month we’re going to be looking at safety tips for your summer “toys”! Today’s tips come from Foremost Insurance, one of the carriers we represent! The recommend the following if you are getting ready to enjoy the trails & dunes:

– Think Ahead. Find out the rules and regulations as far as using your ATV. Many states have areas set aside specifically for ATV riding, check with your local DNR office or online to find out where they are.

– Gear Up. Make sure that your safety gear is DOT approved and that you use not only a helmet, but also gloves and over-the-ankle boots for protection.

– Learn More. Take a safety course to learn how to ride properly & safely. Also register your ATV and make sure the ATV is rated for your age/ability level.

– Check It Out. Before you hit the trails, make sure your ATV is in good running condition. Check all the fluids and cables to be sure that there will be no issues when out on the trails/dunes.

– Stay Off Paved Roads. ATVs are illegal to drive on paved roads in most states and could be difficult to control on paved surfaces.

Check out the full article for more tips on safely operating your ATV this summer!

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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Driving with Motorcycles

Driving with Motorcycles

 

This week we look at some road rules for drivers when it comes to sharing the road with motorcyclists. The season is upon us and with the roughly 5,300 motorcyclist fatalities each year (according to the USDOT), drivers of private & commercial vehicles need to be more aware.

Thanks to an article from one of our partner companies, Grange Insurance, hopefully these tips will help you as you share the road this summer.

– Share the road, not the lane. Motorcyclists need room to maneuver safely, so don’t share a lane.

– Increase your following distance for flashing turn signals. Many motorcycles on the road these days do not have turn signals that automatically cancel. Keep your distance and make sure the cycle is going to complete a turn before passing.

– A minor annoyance to a motorist could be a major hazard to a motorcyclist. Motorcyclists could change speed or position in their lane due to pot holes, gravel, or other hazards in the roadway.

– Remember that motorcycles react differently. Motorcycles tend to stop quicker on dry pavement than other vehicles. Give yourself enough leeway so you can react in case of a sudden stop.

– Look in all directions when making left turns. Half of all motorcycle accidents occur with motor vehicles. When turning left, look for oncoming traffic as oftentimes motorcycles t-bone motor vehicles while completing the turn.

 

Be sure to read the complete article for more tips on sharing the road with motorcycles!

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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Cleaning Musical Instruments

Cleaning Musical Instruments

 

April is here and you should be thinking about getting the blahs of winter out of your home by doing some spring cleaning!

Not being a musical person myself, I figured that musical instruments would need to be cleaned on a regular basis due to germs/dust. We found an article from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas on instrument hygiene. The recommend that musicians not share instruments/mouthpieces/reeds for obvious reasons. Depending on what type of instrument you have, the cleaning recommendations for the different components vary:

For Flutes – use alcohol wipes for the lip plate, cotton swabs & denatured isopropyl alcohol for around the embouchure hole, & a lint-free cloth & cleaning rod for the interior of the flute. Never use water as it could damage the cork.

For brass instruments – it is recommended that mouthpieces be cleaned once a month using warm, soapy water & a mouthpiece brush or soft cloth. Dry with paper towel.

For instruments using an ebony or hard rubber mouthpiece – they should be swabbed after each playing. Use a small container that can accommodate the mouthpiece (tip down) and fill with a 50/50 solution of water & white vinegar. Let sit for a bit and use a mouthpiece brush to clean the piece (this may be repeated for dirty mouthpieces). If there is cork in the mouthpiece, be sure to protect it from moisture. Let dry.

For stringed/percussion instruments – wash your hands before using!

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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Cleaning Antiques

Cleaning Antiques

 

April is here and you should be thinking about getting the blahs of winter out of your home by doing some spring cleaning!

Antique cleaning has often been deemed a “no no” by appraisers and collectors alike, removing the “patina” from them can lower their value or even ruin them. This week we share an article from Home Museum with tips on how to clean certain antique materials. Please note – We are not affiliated with Home Museum and ask that you do your research before attempting to clean antiques yourself. If you do not feel comfortable with cleaning them yourself, seek out a professional that can clean/preserve them.

Painted Wood – use paint thinner VERY carefully & go slow. If the paint is a milk or egg-based paint, paint thinner may not work. Be sure to use cotton swabs, soft cloth, & artist’s brushes as your abrasive.

Painted Plastic – use distilled water or Triton 100 surfactant and again use cotton swabs/soft cloth/artist’s brushes as your abrasive being sure to dry the item quickly, especially if the item is made of celluloid.

Painted Metal – use distilled water or Triton 100 surfactant and again use cotton swabs/soft cloth/artist’s brushes as your abrasive being sure to dry the item quickly to avoid rust. This tip applies to non-painted metal as well.

Cast Iron – use paint thinner or lacquer thinner (for stubborn gunk), being careful not to use it on painted parts (such as on cast iron toys/banks). You can be a little more aggressive using steel wool or a fine sand paper as an abrasive. Black shoe polish can be used on cast iron cookery (but don’t cook with it afterwards!).

Silver – use a 50/50 mix of acetone & alcohol mixture and use powdered chalk (from a garden supply/home improvement store) as an abrasive. Never use cling wrap on silver as the chlorine gasses emitted from it will etch silver.

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized

Cleaning Electronics

Cleaning Electronics

 

April is here and you should be thinking about getting the blahs of winter out of your home by doing some spring cleaning! This week’s tips are provided by PC Magazine on how to clean your electronics! Cellphones, laptops, even fitness trackers need a good cleaning to remove the gunk and dirt of daily life!

Phones & tablets – use distilled water on a soft microfiber cloth to clean the screen, being careful of scratches. Remove the protective case and clean the back of the phone, using cotton swabs & distilled water to get into the crevices.

Laptops – flip the laptop over and gently shake it to get the dirt/crumbs out of the keyboard crevices, then use a can of compressed air to get the hard-to-reach stuff. Use a lightly damp microfiber cloth and wipe down the keyboard & outer casing. For the screen, use an approved screen cleaning spray or purchase screen cleaning wipes.

Desktops – same care should be taken in cleaning a desktop as cleaning a laptop. A mixture of isopropyl alcohol & distilled water and a soft microfiber cloth to clean the keyboard, outer case, & monitor housing. Use approved screen cleaner/wipes for the computer screen. The mouse should also be wiped down with a cloth dampened with the alcohol/distilled water mixture.

Televisions – Don’t clean your television screen with glass cleaner as it is corrosive and can cause damage to the screen, use distilled water on a cloth instead. Take the batteries out of the remote, blast it with some compressed air, & clean it with a cloth dampened with a mixture of isopropyl alcohol & distilled water.

Be sure to check out the full article from PC Magazine for tips on cleaning other electronic items!

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

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Easter Green

Easter Green

This week we will be sharing some tips when it comes to the time-honored tradition of decorating Easter eggs! This article from the blogging site The Spruce shares a dozen tips to make sure you are safe while preparing the eggs:

  • Keep It Clean – make sure work surfaces, utensils, & the eggs themselves are clean to avoid contamination.
  • Use Two Sets – Use one set for the Easter egg hunt (or use plastic eggs) and one for eating.
  • Keep Them Refrigerated – keep the hard boiled eggs in the fridge until you are ready to decorate.
  • 2 Hour Window – don’t let anyone consume eggs that have been sitting out for longer than 2 hours to avoid possible illness.
  • Use Pasteurized Shelled Eggs – many people like to “blow out” their eggs (pricking both ends of the eggshell and blowing the contents out the other end) before decorating. unpasteurized eggs may contain salmonella, if pasturized aren’t available then wash the egg in hot water and rinse in a solution of bleach & cold water (1 teaspoon per 1/2 cup of water)
  • Use Raw Eggs – after blowing out the eggs, if you plan to use the contents – do it right away, don’t wait!

 

There are a few more tips available on the article from The Spruce, so be sure to check it out! We hope you and yours have a happy & safe Easter & Passover holiday!

 

Contact Us!

At Marsilje & Vander Plow Insurance Agency, we can work with you to make sure you’ve got the coverage you need, while at the same time using all possible credits and discounts to make that coverage affordable. Just give us a call at 616-396-1497 or send us a note at marsiljeins@gmail.com. We want to help you meet your goals, and make sure what’s important to you is protected!

Categories: Uncategorized