Local gas prices are now close to a dollar below their all-time record levels of a month ago in many areas after four straight weeks of hefty price declines following the September-October price spike, according to the Auto Club’s Weekend Gas Watch. The average price for self-serve regular gasoline in California is $5.49, which is 15 cents lower than last week. The average national price is $3.78, which is two cents higher than a week ago.
The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $5.54 per gallon, which is 17 cents lower than last week, 93 cents lower than last month, and 96 cents higher than last year. In San Diego, the average price is $5.52, which is 15 cents lower than last week, 88 cents lower than last month, and 98 cents higher than last year.
On the Central Coast, the average price is $5.54, which is 14 cents lower than last week, 81 cents lower than last month, and $1.02 higher than last year. In Riverside, the average per-gallon price is $5.41, which is 12 cents lower than last week, 92 cents lower than last month, and 91 cents higher than a year ago. In Bakersfield, the $5.74 average price is 10 cents lower than last Thursday, 52 cents lower than last month, and $1.21 higher than a year ago today.
“Los Angeles wholesale gasoline prices are higher than they were two weeks ago, but still are about $1.80 below their all-time record level reached in late August, indicating that there is still a lot of room for declines in pump prices,” said Auto Club spokesperson Doug Shupe. “Almost every part of the metropolitan Los Angeles and San Diego areas should have at least a couple of gas stations charging less than $5 a gallon. Make sure to shop around virtually for the lowest prices using a tool such as the free AAA Mobile app to avoid overpaying for gas.”
The Auto Club reminds drivers of the following tips to save money on gas:
- If you use premium unleaded fuel, make sure it is required for your vehicle, not just recommended. The Auto Club's Automotive Research Center found that vehicles with recommended premium fuel performed safely with regular unleaded gasoline.
- Make sure your tires are properly maintained and inflated to the correct level.
- Maintain your car according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Regular service will ensure optimum fuel economy.
- Avoid “jackrabbit” starts and hard accelerations. These actions greatly increase fuel consumption.
- Slow down and drive the speed limit. Fuel economy peaks around 50 mph on most cars, then drops off as speed increases. Reducing freeway speeds by 5 to 10 mph can increase fuel economy by as much as 14%.
- Use cruise control on the highway to help maintain a constant speed and save fuel. However, never use cruise control on slippery roads because you could lose control of the vehicle.
- Minimize your use of air conditioning.
- Avoid extended idling to warm up the engine, even in colder temperatures. It’s unnecessary and wastes fuel.
- Remove unnecessary and heavy items from your car.
- Minimize your use of roof racks and remove special carriers when not in use.
- Download the AAA App to find the cheapest gas prices near you.
The Weekend Gas Watch monitors the average price of gasoline. As of 9 a.m. on Nov. 3, averages are: