Does CNG save money? FOX 13 investigates

Posted at 9:51 PM, Sep 23, 2012

SALT LAKE CITY - Utahns pay almost $4 for a gallon of gas on average. To get that same amount of compressed natural gas costs about $1.50. FOX 13 is conducting an experiment to see whether switching our news vehicles to CNG can save money.

Each FOX 13 news vehicle needs about $500 per month in gasoline, so when EnergyWise approached the station to consider switching to CNG vehicles, we decided to convert one of those vehicles to a bi-fuel vehicle to see how much money it will save.

"You will maintain and keep your exsisting gasoline system. we'll install a completely separate system, which is the natural gas system, with a separate tank," said Paul Hydok.

In addition to being cheaper to fill up, CNG is also a clean-burning fuel, which means it will produce far fewer emissions.

"I'll end up putting 15 dollars of fuel in my vehicle while I'm watching you put in probably 60 to 65 dollars in yours," said Hydok.

Converting from regular gasoline to a CNG-powered vehicle is an expensive and labor-intensive process. It can cost between $6,500 and 8,500. It took about 4 days to convert our FOX 13 Nissan Xterra.

FOX 13 will monitor how the CNG vehicle compares to our regular vehicles and share our results in a couple months.