Prices at the pump likely to keep rising

In this April 23, 2018, photo, a car is filled with gasoline at a station in Windham, N.H. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

AAA said Ohio drivers are paying more, a lot more, to fill up their tank.

The current average cost of a gallon is $2.82. That's 66 cents higher than this time last year.

AAA spokesperson, Kimberly Schwind, said it's normal for gas prices to spike at the beginning of the busy summer driving season, but said this week's decision to re-impose economic sanctions on Iran has exasperated prices at the pump.

"We have not seen gas prices this high since the end of 2014, so it's noticeable," said Schwind.

Speculation is heavy over how the Iran deal will impact crude oil prices. AAA said crude oil currently sits about $70 per barrel, the highest since November 2014.

Schwind said Ohio drivers can expect the cost of gasoline to go higher before it levels off.

"We're already seeing prices above $2.80 a gallon, and so we could be closer to that $3 a gallon mark as we go into the summer," said Schwind.

Consumer experts caution the rising cost at the pump will likely impact almost any business that relies on drivers, such as pizza shops, Uber rides, florists, and package delivery companies. The experts predict those costs will likely get passed down to the consumer.

AAA offered tips to conserve fuel and ultimately stretch your dollar:

  • Accelerate gradually. Avoid jackrabbit starts.
  • Anticipate your stops. When approaching a red light, let your foot off the gas as early as possible.
  • In summer, drive during cooler parts of the day. Cooler, denser air can boost power and mileage.
  • Avoid long warm-ups in the morning. They're unnecessary and waste fuel.
  • Use air conditioning. Today's air conditioners create less drag on the engine than driving with the windows open.
  • Maintain recommended tire pressure. Low pressure reduces fuel economy and can damage tires.
  • Keep the air filter clean. Clogged filters reduce fuel economy and increase exhaust emissions.
  • Drive the speed limit.