In the next few months, Arizona drivers should brace themselves for higher prices at the pump.
“I think prices could inch up maybe a total of 15 to 35 cents a gallon in the next month or two,” said GasBuddy analyst Patrick DeHaan.
In the last week, DeHaan said the average cost per gallon went up three cents and he added that it was slightly higher than this time a year ago.
“Unfortunately this is the time of year that we start to see gas prices go up, and that’s exactly what they’re doing,” he said.
As of Thursday, Arizona’s prices were closely tracking the national average of $2.45, according to AAA.
The increase is believed to stem from two areas: refinery maintenance to prepare for higher summer demand and the seasonal transition to cleaner-burning gas, which is more expensive to produce.
“Southern California refineries generally switch a little bit earlier, and some of those refineries feed into Arizona, so you will likely see higher gas prices coming down the pipeline along with that cleaner gasoline,” DeHaan said. “That could bring Arizona’s average back into the upper two-dollar-a-gallon range by the time prices peak.”