Shortage of air conditioner parts expected this summer

Published: May. 28, 2021 at 5:46 PM CDT|Updated: May. 28, 2021 at 6:10 PM CDT
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LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - As we head into the summer months, heat and air companies are preparing for a nationwide air conditioner shortage.

Darryl Robinson, President of Robinson Air, says the shortage is a ripple effect caused by factories being forced to shut down last year during the pandemic. He says over the last several months, heating and air companies have been burning through the surplus of supplies from when the factories shut down. With more parts being needed going into summer, the demand caught up with the supply.

“We knew this was coming. We talked to our suppliers and said what’s our plan for this summer. Based on our last two or three years of purchases, they’re trying to load up the warehouse with what they think we’re going to need,” Robinson said.

Robinson said the tiniest piece of equipment can force the delay in parts.

“The equipment is made of steel, copper, aluminum, all these materials have to go into it. Circuit boards, I think there’s a shortage on the circuit boards. There may be one part that goes on a particular furnace, that one little part is going to hold the whole production up,” Robinson said.

Here in southwest Oklahoma, Robinson said people should expect delays throughout the summer, but they’re working to minimize the impact.

“It just means a time delay. Instead of getting the equipment the next day, maybe it takes three days to get the equipment in. So, we’ll bring a portable AC out to your home to keep you cool for those two or three days because we know that’s going to happen. So, we’re going to try to be proactive. A shortage in supplies means the prices are going to go up and we’re trying to keep those down,” Robinson said.

Robinson said there are also delays in shipping due to shortages in the trucking industry. He said this is not just a local problem, but one that people will be dealing with across the country, so he urges everyone to be proactive and check your AC units and filters ahead of time rather than waiting until there’s a problem when it’s 100 degrees outside.

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