GREAT FALLS — Heading into peak summer driving season, gas prices are only getting worse as Great Falls is five cents away from reaching five dollars a gallon. The average Great Falls price as of Wednesday is $4.95 a gallon.
“All these prices mean is that people are going to have to budget and plan differently for the week, especially during summer,” said Trevor Floerchinger of Great Falls. “Unfortunately, probably some people are trying to pine around the gas prices and maybe not experience a lot of the things we get to experience in Montana.”
So what can be done to save your wallet from feeling the effects of the soaring prices? Well, Fritz Auto co-owner Michael McGeorge says that slowing down and driving steady might just save you that gas in your tank.
“The biggest things are driving carefully,” said McGeorge. “You know, like there’s an egg under the gas pedal and just take the trips you have to do and try to consolidate trips into one if you can.”
Michael also explained that regular car maintenance can do wonders in saving your wallet from going on empty: “Make sure you don’t have any loose or worn parts as far as wheel bearings and stuff like that. A good tune-up. Make sure your car’s running good. If you have a check engine light, certainly have it checked out. Do anything you can to optimize efficiency.”
Despite what you may think, tow truck drivers haven’t seen many people breaking down due to gas-related issues, but they advise that keeping your tank filled to at least the quarter-tank mark can help your car not end up needing maintenance in the future.
“It is bad for the vehicle to run below a quarter of a tank constantly because you can start to pick up sediments in the bottom of the tank that have been put in there from fueling up over time which can cause your fuel pump to break,” said Casey Pozder, one of Carnahan’s wrecker drivers.
Driving is sometimes a necessity and with a little effort, you might be able to lessen the pain of paying at the pump.