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Utah auto repair shops facing backups due to supply chain issues

Posted at 10:05 AM, Jun 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-16 12:05:57-04

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah — Drivers who haven't been in a fender bender lately should consider themselves lucky for a number of reasons, including the back up at local repair shops that are at an all-time high.

While many will blame the repair shops for the lengthy delays, it's a situation they don't want any part of as they're filling up their own lots waiting for parts.

A rush of customers would normally be welcomed, but now when parts needed to fix cars, trucks and SUVs remain on back order due to supply chain issues.

"Parts on back order, sometimes with no date at all, some of the vendors can't even tell us a date that the parts going to be arriving," said Randy Wareham, production manager at West Valley Collision Repair. "It just takes a long time. We've had some cars taken three four months just to get parts."

The main problems run from big parts like airbags, to those drivers would never think about.

"Seat belts; you'd be surprised little brackets that you should just easily be able to get, we've had issues with," said Wareham. "I've got one car here now that the emblems are on back order. Maybe there's some structural stuff here that'll really hold up a repair probably going to be having to wait on."

If a car is safely able to be driven, people are asked to give shops a call ahead of time so they can order parts.

"I know it's not nice driving around a damaged vehicle, but sometimes that's what we have to do," expressed Wareham.

And when it comes time to get to work, Wareham said shops are getting creative.

"We've made connections over the years of people we know in other states, or ways people that know how to get parts. I found three or four parts that had no release date whatsoever."

West Valley Collision Repair appreciates their customers understanding the waits and backlogs.

"Sometimes we actually just get the part here and magically call them and say hey, 'We found it, we got it,' and then they can pick up their car and they're happy," said Wareham.

But the hope is supply chain issues will soon go away.