Poor Driving Habits that Can Damage Your Vehicle

Poor driving habits can damage your vehicle and increase your risk of having an accident. Changing bad driving habits will protect you from accidents, extend the lifespan of your vehicle and reduce insurance costs. Paying less for StateChoice auto insurance in West Hartford, CT should be incentive enough to change your driving style. Eliminating the following habits will improve your driving and protect your car.  

Driving on “Fumes” – Driving on low fuel can overheat your fuel pump, causing premature wear and tear. It can also clog your fuel filter as you’re using the dregs from an empty tank. If you can’t afford a full tank of gas, keeping your gauge at a minimum of quarter full will protect your car.   

Hauling Excess Weight – Extra weight puts stress on your vehicle’s suspension, brakes and drivetrain. It also causes you to burn up more fuel. If you don’t need the cargo you’re lugging around, leave it behind.   

Hard Stops – Unless it’s an emergency to prevent an accident, avoid sudden stops that cause you to slam on the brakes. Hard stops wear out brakes quicker, forcing you to replace brake pads and rotors more often.

Dragging Brakes Downhill – Riding brakes on downhill slopes can damage brake components. Rather than using brakes as a protective measure, shift to a lower gear to reduce your speed. This will protect your brakes for when you need them most.

Riding Clutch – Resting your hand on the clutch while waiting for the light to change is yet another bad habit that needs to stop. Riding your clutch puts undue pressure on its components, causing premature wear and tear. Over time, this habit could cause your clutch to fail resulting in costly repairs.

Good driving habits combined with auto insurance from StateChoice in West Hartford, CT will protect you and your vehicle on the road.

Surpising Causes of Traffic Jams and How Each Driver can Prevent Them

Traffic jams and congested lanes, they are a harsh reality for many drivers. These daily inconveniences are almost seen as the norm, but they don’t need to be. Many people think that slow traffic is caused by accidents, but in reality, there does not have to be an accident to bring traffic to a crawl and even the best city planning cannot avoid congestion at times. There have been several scientific studies on the science of the traffic jam, and the results are very informative. At StateChoice insurance we want our clients to know all they can about the causes of traffic jams to ensure a safe and convenient commute.

Scientific Causes of a Traffic Jam

  • Being too polite or cautious. Yep, being rude may prevent a traffic jam. This is because being too hesitant to move forward when traffic around you slows contributes to the problem. Always put safety first but recognize that sometimes it is okay to be rude and move on even if others are rubbernecking or moving too cautiously.
  • Not using the "zipper merge." Think of this, if you were walking in a group and the hallway narrowed each person would merge, often seamlessly, and continue. When the same happens on the road many times, people inside of vehicles do not merge as easily. If people could accomplish what they can do on foot in vehicles, many traffic jams could be prevented altogether. 

StateChoice serves West Hartford, CT, and the surrounding areas, if you want an insurance quote today, you won’t get jammed up with us.

Car Maintenance Tips to Keep you Driving in West Hartford, CT

You will undoubtedly need a car in West Hartford, CT as well as car insurance from a local broker like StateChoice, who serves the local West Hartford area. However, if your car doesn’t run properly on a regular basis, all of this expense of insurance and the vehicle itself will be a waste. So you want to keep your vehicle up and running by maintaining it properly. Below are some car maintenance tips to keep you driving in West Hartford, CT so that you can get around and you’re not throwing away money.

CHANGE THE OIL REGULARLY

Oil is the life blood of your vehicle, so when it gets dirty it will very quickly damage or kill your car. It should be changed every 5,000 miles at the latest and the more often the better. If you don’t change the oil, you’re asking for car trouble in the future.

CORRECT INSURANCE

Make sure you have the right types of insurance coverage. Nothing will keep you from driving like an accident that your insurance company won’t pay to fix because you weren’t covered for it. While it’s a little money up front every month, it will give you piece of mind that your insurance company will completely pay for the damage if and when it occurs.

KEEP UP WITH THE TIRES

Low tires or tires that have all their tread worn down are another leading cause of accidents or dangerous blowouts that can damage the car itself. So keep an eye on your car’s tires, as they usually last 40 to 50 thousand miles before they need to be replaced. While this one-time cost may be a little pricey, it will be worth it in the long run when it avoids an accident.

Ways to Get Home Safely After Drinking This Year

Many parties and events include drinking. However, you should not attempt to drive home after you have been drinking. Consuming even one drink can drastically slow down your reaction time, increasing the likelihood you will be involved in a car accident. And if you over indulge and attempt to drive home, you could find yourself facing a driving while under the influence criminal charge. Here are a few tips from State Insurance Solutions on various ways to get home safely after drinking in Arlington, TX this holiday season.

Find a Designated Driver Before Drinking

If you are going to an event with others, select one designated driver before anyone begins to drink. This ensures that one person will remain alcohol free and be able to safely drive you home at the end of the evening.

Use a Ride Sharing Service

Using a ride sharing service, like Uber or Lyft, allows you to get a ride home after you have been drinking. However, keep in mind that these services can deny you a ride if you are belligerent and there is a hefty cleaning fee if you throw up in their car.

Call a Cab

If you have had too much to drink and are unsure if you can drive home safely, pick up the phone and call a cab. They can help ensure you make it home safe and sound.

Find a Sober Ride Program

Lastly, if you have had too much to drink, look for a sober ride program in your area. The availability of these programs changes from day to day, based on funding and volunteer availability. However, many of these are free or low-cost ways to get home and the majority of them operate nightly during the holiday season.

At State Insurance Solutions, serving the Arlington, TX area, we want to wish you all a safe and happy holiday season. The New Year is also a great time to take a look at your insurance policies and ensure they still meet your needs. If you are looking to save some money on a policy this year or increase your coverage, give us a call. We can help you find the policy that best meets your needs today.

Being Prepared for Accidental Rage

Rational thought is never easy in the midst of a car accident, but a bit of mental preparation for the possibility of one can help keep you from being overcome by road rage.

  • Driving Is Inherently Stressful for Everyone

Although driving is a part of daily life for many people, there is a real danger to barreling along at over 100 feet per second on the highway. The rules of the road help mitigate the risk enough to make it a reliable form of transportation, but that doesn’t change the fact that every driver and passenger faces the risk of death if anything goes awry. This threat of injury has people on high alert from the start, increasing the likelihood of emotions like road rage.

  • Most Drivers Are Doing Their Best

Barring the few exceptions, the other drivers on the road are doing their best to arrive at their destination without incident. Despite this, they will make poor decisions based on incomplete or inaccurate information, which may cause them to change lanes, step on the brakes, or make other sudden movements that increase the risk of an accident.

  • Accidents Happen

Even when all of the involved drivers are following traffic laws and driving safely, there will be times when fate convenes to send a bursting tire or a distracting bout of sickness while at the wheel. The other people involved are likely stressed from being on the road and attempting to avoid accidents just as much as you are, which means there are likely to be raised voices and tempers at the scene of an accident. Just remember that exhibiting road rage yourself will only exacerbate the tenseness of the situation.

This is also why it is vital and legally necessary to have automobile insurance if you intend to drive on the road. Hopefully, the people involved in the accident will have a quality insurance company like StateChoice to stand beside them in their time of need.

Tips To Help When Driving Abroad

Driving abroad is not something that happens automatically without any kind of planning. You want to be safe and prepared, so there are some tips that you can easily follow. This will reduce some of the stress, especially if you are going to a country that drives on the left side of the road.

One of the first things you want to do is find out what the driving requirements are. There may be age limits imposed by the country as well as by the rental car companies. You may also require an International Driving Permit as opposed to just your standard license.

The car that you get from the rental car agency may be unfamiliar to you. It may be a stick shift and it may also require you driving on the other side of the road. Before you drive off of the rental car lot, familiarize yourself with everything.

Don’t rely solely on your cell phone for directions. Purchase or rent a GPS unit so that you always have access to directions. This can also save you money from roaming charges that could otherwise add up quickly.

Read up on some of the laws within the country you are traveling to so that you know about driving laws as well as what road signs look like. This can ensure you don’t get pulled over for breaking a law inadvertently.

Have insurance on your rental car so that you aren’t out-of-pocket for any damages. Your credit card, your insurance company, and the rental car company may all provide you with options.

It is important to have auto insurance that you can rely on. Call today and one of our agents at StateChoice can walk you through all of the options, answer questions, and obtain quotes to help you with the comparison process.

 

Am I Covered In A Hit & Run?

It is always a good idea to know how sufficient your auto insurance coverage is before you are involved in an accident. Hit and runs can be difficult because the other person has fled. Whether you hit them or they hit you, they are not around to deal with the consequences. Knowing that you are covered can provide significant peace of mind as you drive around Connecticut.

You may be covered on some aspects of a hit-and-run and not on others. This is why it’s good to look at all of the coverage options within a policy and know that there are different limits to choose from.

Collision coverage may be something that you already have in place, particularly if you have a lien holder that requires a certain limit. This form of coverage is going to pay for repairs on your vehicle, regardless of who was found at fault.

Personal injury protection, commonly referred to as PIP, can help to cover medical expenses and lost wages for you as the driver as well as anyone who may have been in the car with you. This is a particularly important level of coverage because you never know how severe the injuries could be and therefore medical expenses could be very high.

You don’t want to be financially responsible for any aspect of the hit-and-run. While you may have to pay a deductible, you don’t want to pay medical bills, auto repairs, or deal with lost wages. This is why it can also be advantageous to look into medical payments coverage as well as uninsured motorist.

At StateChoice, we have agents to help you find the necessary coverage to provide peace of mind in West Hartford. We will get quotes to help you compare rates, answer any questions you have, and help you throughout all of the steps for purchasing auto insurance.