Parts and worker shortage hurting mechanics across the Carolinas

State - Regional

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) – It could be months before collision repair shops in the Charlotte-area get certain car parts.

“We have seen a rise in the number of back order parts, nothing like what we have seen in the past,” Collision Center manager Mark Oats said.

He said some parts like catalytic converters and glass are so backed-up, manufactures are unable to give a delivery date.

“We are starting to see it from almost every manufacturer of some shape or form,” Oats said.

He said the shortage is impacting about one out of every 10 cars that come into his shop. But, when 75 to 90 vehicles come through each month, the number of unrepairable cars add up quickly.

“If the vehicle is not to where you can return it to the customer, then I have to store it basically,” Oats said.

Industry experts say one of the main reasons for the shortage is because the majority of manufacturers slowed down or completely stopped production over the pandemic.

“From my understanding, certain manufacturing plants had to be shut down due to that and once they were just down, it takes weeks to get back online, catch back up the orders, put the product out there, the shipping and things like that,” Oats said.

Oats said the shop does their best to let customer know about the delays, but does not know when the problem will be resolved.

“As soon as we have an ETA on the parts, of course we let them know. If it is something that’s going to be quite some time, then we are at the mercy… we are sitting with a car we can’t fix it, we can’t get paid for it, we can’t get the customer back in it, so it’s an inconvenience for everyone,” Oats said.

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