Thursday, October 25, 2012


Sadly, this post isn't about instagram or even taking actual photographs. We recently got a new (old) car and shopped around for new insurance. Progressive offered us the best deal, so we went with. Going with Flo the Progressive lady meant accepting her newest accessory. Snapshot. Snapshot is a little device that plugs into your car's data port and reports back to Progressive on the times you drive and the amount of "hard braking" you do. When you "hard brake" Snapshot beeps at you. I love data, and it is pretty cool to log onto the Progressive website at the end of the day and see a breakdown of how I drove that day. Although Progressive says they don't take your speed into account, it does give you a graph of your speeds. I drive faster on expressways than I thought I did.
You can see how Progressive breaks up the day into low, medium, and high risk. You can also easily pick out the time of day I drove on the interstate!
Okay, so the hard braking thing...I don't like it. Progressive defines hard braking as any time you slow down at a rate of more than 7MPH per second. This isn't "slamming the brakes" territory. On cars with standard transmissions, it sometimes counts shifting as hard brakes. I've noticed it tends to count stops on hills as hard brakes, even if it doesn't feel like I'm coming to a hard stop. It counts each second of 7MPH or more slow down as a separate hard brake. The five on the chart above are all from one incident, where someone cut me off, and I did slam the brakes. The beep the Snapshot gives out when you hard brake is annoying, and could be distracting with younger drivers. I might yell at it. Sometimes. When no one else is in the car. Installation was easy, after I figured out where to install it! My owner's manual wasn't helpful, so I went to Progressive's website where I put in information about my car and they showed me a picture of where to find the data port...except it wasn't there. I had to crawl under the steering wheel to finally find it. Progressive needs Snapshot to report more days before I'm offered a discount (oh...I just learned that days you don't drive don't count, unless you crank the car and move it around the driveway a little, so that's going to slow my discount down). I'll report back. Here's hoping the fact I never drive during high risk times and rarely during medium risk helps me out.

EDITED- So my Snapshot discount was calculated. 10% off the total cost of the policy. I've also developed an utter hatred for this thing. You know what doesn't help your stress level when someone in front of you does something insanely stupid, causing you to brake hard? Your Snapshot by Progressive beeping at you! Argh! Also, because of where it hooks into my car it is insanely easy to catch my foot on it as I enter/exit the car.

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