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Preventive Maintenance is Cheap Insurance

It was a Sunday night and the house felt cold. The only way for the Doloski family to keep their Illinois house warm and cozy in December is with a working furnace. One look at the thermostat told them that clearly, theirs was not.

 

Furnace repairman peering into furnace

 

Within minutes of arriving, the service technician diagnosed the problem. They needed a new igniter. At least the problem was one they could not have resolved themselves.

Then the technician opened the side panel of the furnace. Filthy. Neglected. He said the igniter failed because the furnace filter hadn’t been cleaned. What would have taken five minutes to vacuum or replace, cost hundreds in “after hours” fees, parts, and labor. They know the furnace filter needs to be changed regularly, and usually, they do. But this year they simply forgot.

When it comes to forgetting about routine maintenance issues, the Doloski’s are not alone. Take automobiles, for example. A National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) survey showed that while 48 percent of its certified technicians always tell customers about the importance of routine vehicle maintenance, only 2 percent routinely follow that advice.

If you own a home, a car, or simply a human body, the words routine maintenance should be part of your vocabulary. Safety and good health are, of course, the most important reasons to keep what we’ve got in good working order. But the financial benefits are significant, too.

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Put a Big Smile on Your Face with a Dental Savings Plan

I opened my inbox and right near the top was a frantic letter from Lisa, who’s facing an emergency dental situation with a $15,000 price tag on it. She is desperate for options that will let her keep her teeth while not plunging her into debt.

smiling woman

 

Another letter from the Madison family related that their finances are so tight, they cannot afford the luxury of regular dental care—not even routine x-rays and cleaning. That letter ended, “Is there a dental plan for families in our situation? Please answer soon before our teeth fall out!”


RELATED: Would You Floss for $8,000?


While I am not a dentist, I know that dental care is not a luxury. It is essential to the good health of every family member. And the best way for Lisa and the Madison Family to avoid big dental bills is to practice regular preventive care. Even then, routine hygiene and x-rays should be seen as absolutely mandatory.

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Ask Me Anything: Best Inexpensive Printer | Stain Recipe | Insurance Claims | Hair Products

I have a friend who chides me from time to time that I ask too many questions (you know who you are, Duane). I’m sure it’s true but only because I am the inquisitive type. I have that the need-to-know gene.

But do you know what I love more than asking questions? Answering them! And that’s a good thing because I do get a lot of questions from you, My Dear Readers. Oh, boy do I!

 

Lori writes: I am looking for a good reliable computer printer. I do not need color—just a super reliable, well-functioning black and white printer for home.

The Brother Compact Monochrome Laser Printer, HLL2395DW is a great choice for people who need to print, scan, or copy term papers, tax forms, concert tickets and other black and white documents from home, home office or dorm room. It is my pick for Best Inexpensive™ Black and White Laser Printer.

This printer handles automatic two-sided printing; it’s pretty speedy too, at 36 pages per minute, with a cost-per-page of about 2.3 cents which includes wear and tear on the drum.

This Brother model is quite easy to set up and will be a reliable addition to your home’s computer network. Expect this printer to work well with any current laptop, desktop, smartphone or tablet including Chromebooks.

The paper tray holds 250 sheets of paper and the printer itself has a draft or “save more” setting that allows you to conserve toner when the document you print does not require professional quality. But when that is needed, this printer outputs sharp, professional black and white pages at up to 2400 x 600 dpi resolution.

Gayle writes: I have been going through baby clothes that have been stored for many years and some items have yellow stains on them. Can you recommend a product that might get these old stains out? I have no idea the source of these stains. 

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