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Gas prices continue to rise in West Virginia

By Staff | Apr 8, 2011

PITTSBURGH – West Virginia motorists will need extra cash at the pump this week since prices increased 12 cents per gallon to $3.749 for regular unleaded gasoline.

According to the Fuel Gauge, after breaking through the $108 per barrel threshold Monday, crude oil prices settled up 53 cents at $108.47 at the close of formal trading on the NYMEX.

Unrest in the Middle East and Northern Africa continue to be the driving force in the crude oil market. Analysts pointed to continuing violence in Libya, along with escalating unrest in Syria and Yemen, as increasing uncertainty surrounding the future of crude oil supply in the region. Additionally, the threat of radiation in Japan following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami continued to add its own uncertainty to the oil market.

Higher crude oil prices from continued supply uncertainty overseas, along with the change from winter-blend to summer-blend gasoline, have driven the recent rise in the average price of gasoline at the pump to their highest level since Sept. 27, 2008. The current national retail average price for a gallon of self-serve regular gasoline is $3.685. This is up a dime from a week ago and whopping 86 cents from this day last year.

AAA reminds motorists of the following maintenance tips to save at the pump:

Keep tires inflated. Underinflated tires can cut fuel economy by as much as 2 percent per pound of pressure below the recommended level.

Check your air filter. A dirty air filter increases fuel consumption.

Change your oil when you tune up your car & use the weight recommended by the manufacturer. Oil that is too heavy forces the engine to waste fuel in overcoming the oil’s resistance. Overly thin oil does not adequately protect your engine.

Wheels need to be properly aligned to prevent wind drag.

This week’s average prices: West Virginia Average: $3.749

Average price during the week of March 29, 2011: $3.630

Average price during the week of April 6, 2010: $2.877

The following is a list of the average price of unleaded self-serve gasoline in various areas:

Bridgeport at $3.760

Clarksburg at $3.734

Huntington at $3.771

Martinsburg at $3.899

Morgantown at $3.701

Parkersburg at $3.741

Weirton at $3.694

Wheeling at $3.697

– From wire reports