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CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

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  • CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

    I live in Santa Clarita CA (30 miles N/W of L.A.). The city CNG fueling station is selling the CNG for $2.99 a CGG. With the current cost of a Honda Civic GX (compared to the hybrid or even the gas powered LX) what is the economic benefit of going CNG? Saving the planet is fine, but my primary interest is the CNG engine is to save the green in my wallet. Am I missing something OR is it just too early for me to get a CNG car? Please advise.

  • #2
    Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

    I wonder if you overlooked the fact that the GX has an 8 gallon tank, I know I did when I started to look into this. Generally for a GX you'll get 5-6 gallons each time you fill up, so at $2.99 for 6 gallons that's only $17.94.

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    • #3
      Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

      CNG still has the potential advantage of home refueling, which, at current residential rates, is considerably less that that 2.99 you quoted. This is where I feel the economics will play out. Especially looking at the GX, where the actual gas usage, due to high mpgge, is low enough for a phill to easily meet your needs. Then, if you ARE in a situation where you have to drive more than what the phill provides you, there are still the public stations at $1.50 below gasoline. Again though, everyone has to run the numbers themselves to determine what the potential savings are for their situation.

      When I got into CNG 3 years ago, the economic savings were not significant, as public fueling was around 1.73, and gas at the time was in the low-mid 2's... for me the reason was time. The Carpool lane access gave me an extra hour a day (at least) in my commute. As gas prices went up, and CNG stayed the same (until recently), I started gaining an extra economic benefit.
      1997 Factory Crown Victoria w/ extended tanks ~~ Clunkerized!
      2000 Bi-Fuel Expedition --> ~~ Sold ~~ <--

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      • #4
        Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

        Don't forget San Fernando which is a few miles south of Santa Clarita and is $1.99/gge. But you really need a home pump to get the maximum benefit.
        02 GX
        01 GX
        03 Crown Vic
        06 GX
        Home Fueler

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        • #5
          Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

          Depending on your commute, the HOV access stickers alone can be worth it. For seven years, this has given me a lot of life back.

          What is the economic value?

          http://www.octa.net/schedule_effective.aspx

          Exhibit A is the 91 Fwy toll lanes, where people are willing to pay $1.00 per mile, at the top Friday afternoon rate, to bypass the mixed flow for 10 miles of relief.
          Last edited by cngsteve; 06-18-2008, 09:47 AM.

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          • #6
            Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

            Do the stickers apply to the FasTrak toll roads?

            From what I can tell CA-241, CA-261, CA-73, and CA-133 don't accept them.

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            • #7
              Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

              cngsteve, do you use the 3+ lane on the Fastrak? It is against their policy (ZEVs solo only) but I did use it once, and I have heard of others. It seems the CHP does not care.
              As far as NGV vs Hybrid, the NGVs now are so hot right now and that's not going to change because gasoline will not get any cheaper soon. Most of our natural gas is domestically produced, and more biomethane is going to be available, there is an unlimited supply of trash and manure to produce it.
              I look at an NGV as an investment in the future.
              Last edited by jetboatjohnny; 06-18-2008, 11:59 AM.
              BLUE 09 GX

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              • #8
                Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                I don't use Fastrak. Not on that stretch enough to even have a transponder. I was just using it as an example of market value for bypassing traffic jams.

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                • #9
                  Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                  When I went that way, I used the 3+ lane quite often. Never had a problem with it, and founf myself following single-passenger stickered hybrids through it as well. I still have the transponder, but as I dont' work out there anymore, I'm finding I only use it for the toll roads into irvine for concerts and such.
                  1997 Factory Crown Victoria w/ extended tanks ~~ Clunkerized!
                  2000 Bi-Fuel Expedition --> ~~ Sold ~~ <--

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                  • #10
                    Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                    In the fall of 2007 the MCF price of natural gas fell below $ 6.00 and Chesapeake Energy started to shut in wells. The current MCF price is appoaching $ 13 which is really not justified based upon current domestic production levels. LNG imports will start to come back to the USA at a price of $ 13 and prices should drop back down.

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                    • #11
                      Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                      Originally posted by Cal View Post
                      I live in Santa Clarita CA (30 miles N/W of L.A.). The city CNG fueling station is selling the CNG for $2.99 a CGG. With the current cost of a Honda Civic GX (compared to the hybrid or even the gas powered LX) what is the economic benefit of going CNG? Saving the planet is fine, but my primary interest is the CNG engine is to save the green in my wallet. Am I missing something OR is it just too early for me to get a CNG car? Please advise.
                      Cal,

                      I live about 16 miles North of Santa Clarita in Green Valley. I decided to look for a smaller car for more than a few reasons last fall. Once I found a fueling station in Santa Clarita I was sold on the GX. I drive down to Santa Clarita weekdays and van pool from there to Pasadena. I use the Clean Energy (CE) Santa Clarita station to fill up most of the time because its on the way home.

                      One of my reasons for going to the GX is that CE has program where you can purchase fuel for $1.999/gallon for 12 months when you buy a GX from select dealers; Robertsons Palmdale Honda being one of them. (Power Honda in Valencia didn't sell the GX last fall when I bought mine. I don't know if they're selling them now.)

                      Here's a link to the Clean Energy web site. http://www.cleanenergyfuels.com/hondaGX.html

                      If you're interested, contact Jelena Maslovaric at CE BEFORE you purchase a GX.

                      I also received nearly $3500 from the Federal tax credit and I'm due to get the $3000 state grant next month. This dropped the price of the GX down to less than a hybrid Civic and in the ball park of the LX. (Or is it the CX, DX or HX?) We live in the South Coast Air Quality District, so we're not eligible for the Antelope Valley Air Quality District's grant.

                      Got natural gas at home? Want to pay even less for CNG? Talk to the people here about a home fueling unit. Being surrounded by the National Forrest I don't have natural gas at home, so I can' t get a home fueling unit.

                      Bill
                      Last edited by Green GX; 06-30-2008, 10:31 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                        If you think gasoline prices are coming down soon then, yes, it's not a good time to go CNG. If you think gasoline is here or higher for the long-term then CNG makes economic sense -- that's WHY the prices of cars and compressors are going through the roof (along with the weak dollar which is a major component of FM price increases).
                        02 GX
                        01 GX
                        03 Crown Vic
                        06 GX
                        Home Fueler

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: CNG at $2.99 CGG -- what is the point?

                          Even at $2.99, that's nearly $2 cheaper than the rapidly approaching $5 gasoline prices.

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