U.S. drivers can expect gas prices to remain steady with a spike likely coming at the beginning of May, according to a CNN report in collaboration with gas-tracking app GasBuddy.

While gas will likely remain cheaper than the extreme highs seen in 2022, experts believe the national average could still climb back above the $4-a-gallon threshold as soon as May 2023.

"2023 is not going to be a cakewalk for motorists. It could be expensive," Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, told CNN. "The national average could breach $4 a gallon as early as May – and that's something that could last through much of the summer driving season."

Average gas prices hit the highest ever recorded in the U.S., topping out at over $5 a gallon in some areas. Russia's invasion of Ukraine, China's restrictive COVID-19 policies and unprecedented Federal Reserve interest rate hikes all contributed to the soaring gas prices.

Head of petroleum analysis at gas-tracking app GasBuddy Patrick De Haan shares the most common national gas prices.

The Biden administration's unprecedented use of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve was one of the major strategies employed to combat the rising cost of fuel in 2022, but it remains unclear how willing the administration would be in utilizing the tactic in the new year.

Recently, gas prices have dropped to nominal levels due to decreased demand as winter rolls in. Motor club AAA expected about 112 million people to travel at least 50 miles last weekend, but standstills across the Ohio Turnpike and elsewhere suggest that demand collapsed.

Extreme weather conditions throughout the U.S. had some effect on the travel rate this holiday season and unsafe conditions led to at least 57 deaths.

Americans should not rely on predictions for 2023 too heavily, says De Haan. Referencing the unpredictable nature that followed 2022, De Haan told CNN: "I don't think we've ever seen such an amount of volatility as we saw this year."

Despite the uncertainty surrounding 2023 predictions, the federal government issued its forecast in December, reporting a similar forecast as GasBuddy.

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) said the national average is expected to be about $3.50 a gallon in 2023 as refineries continue to ramp up the production of gasoline.

In the short-term, the national average of gas prices has fallen for seven straight weeks, in contrast to the price of crude oil which is up about 7% since Dec. 19, largely in response to the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in China.

Talking to United Press International, De Haan warned not to expect steady gas prices as 2022 comes to an end.

"While the national average declined for the seventh straight week, with oil prices rallying, it remains to be seen if we will manage another week of gasoline price declines," he said.