Local Pump Tries to Mechanically Keep Gas Prices Down

It seems like oil executives and the government can't agree on why gas prices are rising, but at one local gas station, technology is trying to keep the price down.

Even in Wellborn, where tractors still share the streets with cars and trucks, gas prices are soaring.

Antonio from Bryan feels the pain through daily commute to Franklin.

Forty-five minutes a day, it doesn't seem like that much, but when you do it all week, it's a good $100 bill," he said.

But these old pumps at Junek's Grocery are doing everything they can to keep prices below the inevitable $4 mark.

"They've said there's only 17,000 left, so this is a few of a dying breed," said Mark Junek.

His machines are about 25 years old, and changing parts and programming is a hassle and expensive.

"I think they're about $1,000 to get the computer changed, and then you have to have it rebuilt," Junek said.

Plus, there's only one company that can do it.

Right now, the dollar digit on the four pumps can go to three per gallon. If gas goes for any more than four bucks, and this baby won't budge.

"There's very few places that have them, so you don't deal with them that much," Antonio said before driving away with a full tank and an emptier wallet.

Driver's would love these pumps if gas goes through the roof, except human ingenuity has trumped technology. Junek's has the pumps set for half the price you'll actually pay, so if the meter reads you've filled up $20-worth, you'll still have to pay $40.

Mark is like drivers -- he doesn't want prices too much higher, but for other reasons.

"Hopefully, it's going to stop. If it hits $10, the pumps will have to go. There's no other spot to put a digit on there," Junek said.

Ten dollar gas? How many cars, trucks and tractors will be on Wellborn's streets then?

Those old pumps also don't let drivers fill up more than 99-dollars and 99-cents per fill-up.

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