Dia Thibeault fills up her vehicle Tuesday at Bob and Mike’s Mini Mart in Saco, where regular gasoline was selling for $3.85 a gallon. Derek Davis/Staff Photographer

The price of gas in Maine has dipped below $4 on average for the first time since March.

The average price for a gallon of regular gasoline in Maine was $3.98 on Tuesday, according to GasBuddy, a Boston-based fuel price analysis firm that tracks prices nationwide.

Waldo County reported Maine’s lowest countywide average at $3.89 a gallon, while neighboring Knox County had the highest average at $4.13 a gallon. 

The average in Cumberland County was $4.03 and the average in York County was $3.96. 

Gas prices have been declining steadily since mid-June, when Maine’s average price hit $5.09, the highest per-gallon cost on record for the state. 

Gas at Bob and Mike’s Mini Mart in Saco was $3.85 a gallon on Tuesday. Saco resident Dia Thibeault, who was filling her tank there Tuesday afternoon, said she drives an hour each way to her job in Lewiston, so she’s glad to see the prices going down.


In June, when the prices were at their highest, she said she spent $600 on gas.

Thibeault said she takes the lower prices with a grain of salt because they can fluctuate so much, but for now, she’s relieved to pay less.

While the downward trend has been positive, last year at this time the average gallon in Maine cost $3.11. 

Prices in Maine are still generally higher than the national average, which on Tuesday was $3.82 per gallon. 

Maine diesel prices also are declining, with prices at about $5.19 a gallon, down from the state record of $6.39 in May. Nationally, though, the price of diesel is rising, and at $5.07, is about 7 cents higher than the week before. 

As summer in Maine comes to a close, heating oil prices also are declining from their peak in early May when most suppliers were charging nearly $6 per gallon. But it’s still a far cry from last year’s prices.


According to the Governor’s Energy Office, heating oil now costs $4.68 per gallon on average, a substantial increase from the $2.63 per gallon average this time last year.

Charlie Summers, president and CEO of the Maine Energy Marketers Association, said it’s too soon to tell what to expect from oil prices as we move into the cooler months. 

“The price is going to be a bit of a wild card,” Summers said. He encouraged anyone concerned about paying for oil this winter to reach out to their supplier to talk about a budget program. 

“Talk to them now, don’t wait,” he said. 

Gas and oil prices fell during the height of the pandemic because of low demand as lockdowns and travel restrictions kept motorists home. But as restrictions eased and people began to venture out again, demand started to rebound. Supply has not kept pace, causing prices to climb.

Then in early March, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the United States imposed sanctions on Russia, including a ban on importing oil, causing a spike in prices.


But within the last few months, the gasoline supply has improved and with high inflation, the federal reserve has been raising interest rates. Recession fears have sparked concerns around a drop-off in demand.

Prices are likely to continue to decline leading into the Labor Day weekend, Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy, said in a news release.

It’s unclear how long that will last, particularly as hurricane season continues. 

“It does appear that the tropics are starting to see some activity, so there’s no guarantee the decline will continue,” he said.


But for now, many Mainers will take whatever relief they can get.


Randy Guay, a Biddeford resident and a senior at the University of New England, said the lower prices will make a big difference for college students like himself, as well as anyone trying to make ends meet.

Guay said his girlfriend lives over two hours away, so the gas prices for weekend trips out of town took a toll on his wallet,

The impact of inflation can be felt in all areas of the economy, so relief anywhere is appreciated, he said while filling his tank for $3.99 a gallon at Nadeau’s Deli and Variety in Biddeford.

At Bob and Mike’s, Ray Martel, a Biddeford resident, said it’s a matter of perspective.

He recently returned from a trip to Canada, where gas cost about $2 a liter, or roughly $7.60 a gallon.

That being said, he also noted that for someone living week to week, even the comparatively lower $3.85 per gallon might be hard to swing.

“You’re really at their whim because you have to go where you have to go,” he said.

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