Motorists have noticed some slight relief at the pumps in recent weeks as the latest AA fuel price survey reveals that petrol and diesel prices both fell back this month. Petrol fell by 2 cent to an average of 151.3 cent per litre. Diesel fell more sharply, down 3.2 cent to an average of 142.8 nationwide.
“It is a question of being thankful for small mercies.” Says Director of Policy Conor Faughnan. “For the first time in 8 months petrol prices did not get any worse. The small drop is helpful but we are still dealing with record high prices overall. We still have high oil prices combined with inflated Irish taxes. With both oil prices and the exchange rate between the Euro and the Dollar remaining volatile we are not out of the woods yet.”
For petrol users, the current average price means that the cost of a month’s fuel for a typical motorist is now €227.55 (based on 12,000 miles per year at a fuel economy rate of 30 miles per gallon, typical for a mixture of urban and rural driving).
The AA reminds diesel users that while it is always good advice to shop around for good value you must be sensible about it.
“Go to reputable garages and use your common sense.” Says Faughnan. “There is no doubt that we have a problem out there with dodgy diesel. Earlier this month the Garda and Customs raided a fuel laundering plant in Co. Monaghan with the capacity to produce 20 million litres per annum. That’s enough to supply 10 service stations all year round, which gives an idea of the scale of the problem.”
Drivers with laundered diesels in their tanks are guilty of a serious offence. Quite apart from the legal consequences – a fine of €5,000 is possible – you may damage your engine culminating in a costly repair.
The AA is asking its Members and all motorists to share their concerns about prices and report any issues they come across via its website blog section, http://blog.aaireland.ie/
The AA’s Fuel Saving Tips.
Buy fuel in units of litres, not euros. This makes it obvious where you get the best value
Shop around: don’t always use the same garage out of habit
Drive smoothly and slowly; a harsh driving style burns more fuel
At this time of year the heaters are in constant use. This is hard to avoid but try to take it easy: Air conditioners can add up to 10% to fuel usage.
Don’t use the air conditioning all the time: once the air conditioning has heated the inside of the car, you may be able to turn it down or off.