Massachusetts gas prices are increasing again, according to data from AAA Northeast, though they still remain lower than they were a month ago.
Gas prices in the state are up 4 cents from last week, averaging $3.60 per gallon. That price remains 10 cents lower than a month ago, when the average was $3.70, and 28 cents lower than the national average.
Here is a look at some prices in the region:
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"Despite concerns about the economy and declining demand for gasoline, gas prices increased again last week as markets continue to reckon with recently-announced production cuts from OPEC+ nations and the prospect of a colder-than-normal winter in the Northeast,” Mary Maguire, AAA Northeast vice president of public and government affairs, said in a media release. “Even though national inventories of gas and oil increased last week, supplies are still well below seasonal averages and refiners have sparse capacity to increase production.”
More on gas prices
Ways to improve gas mileage and save money at the pump
Keeping Your Tires Properly Inflated
Make sure there’s enough air in the tires. Underinflated tires create more rolling resistance with the pavement, thereby reducing gas mileage. Inflate your tires to the pressure recommended on the inside of your driver’s side door. Check them periodically with a tire pressure gauge.
“Typically, your gas mileage is going to be impacted by about 5% to 10% if you don’t have proper inflation,” said David Bennett, manager of repair systems for AAA.
But don’t over-inflate. Doing so could cause tires to wear out more quickly.
Making Sure Fluids and Filters Are Changed
Properly maintain your vehicle. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for oil and other fluid changes and for replacing air and other filters. Replacing spark plugs at the proper intervals can help, too.
“The vehicle is going to operate at its peak efficiency” with good maintenance, Bennett said. It will cost between $235 and $289 for new spark plugs on, say, a 10-year-old Ford F-150 pickup with a 4.6-liter V8, according to Repairpal.com.
Watch Your Speed
AAA says fuel economy peaks around 50 miles per hour on most vehicles, then drops as speed rises. Reducing highway speeds by 5 mph (8 kilometers per hour) to 10 mph improves gas mileage by up to 14%.
Coasting to stop lights also helps. Time your travel to keep rolling and avoid unnecessary stops. Cars consume a lot of fuel to get moving from a dead stop.
Plan Your Trip in Advance
Try to minimize backtracking. Do multiple tasks on each trip. Avoid rush hours and other peak travel times.
Don't Idle Too Much
An engine burns one-quarter to a half-gallon (1.9 liters) of gas per hour when idling, but a warm engine needs only around 10 seconds worth of fuel to restart, according to AAA.
So when safely possible, shut your engine off if you’ll be stopped for more than a minute. Many new vehicles do this on their own. Bennett says owners shouldn’t disable their new “stop-start” system.
"Top Tier" Gas
Fill up with gasoline designated as “Top Tier.” Oil companies put additives in Top Tier gas that cuts carbon deposits.
“As you start getting carbon buildup, the vehicle will not be running as efficiently,” Bennett said. Gasoline brands with the additives have stickers on the pumps. They can be found at here.