(WHTM) – It’s not just new cars that are in short supply with long waits. If you need your vehicle repaired, you may have to wait weeks or even months for the job to be completed, too.
When George Weaver fires up his 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe, the whole neighborhood hears what sounds like an old hot rod. His catalytic converter was stolen. The part is targeted by thieves for its valuable metals.
When Weaver looked underneath his car, he saw two clean cuts on the exhaust, and his thousand-dollar converter gone. He limped the SUV to his dealer where he expected a quick repair, but that was not the case – he was told there are no catalytic converters available to replace the missing part.
“The dealer said they are back-ordered, there are none in the country, and they don’t know when they are going to get them in,” Weaver said.
Many original equipment catalytic converters are currently on back order, but that’s not the only essential car part you may not be able to find due to supply chain shortages.
“We are seeing car part delays and shortages in some areas days, weeks, and in some cases, months,” said independent mechanic Matt Overbeck, who owns a repair shop. He says in addition to converters, parts in short supply include ABS brake modules, engine sensors, transmission control modules, and even windshields.
Overbeck says independent shops have more flexibility than dealers that have to use official replacement parts. “You can work with your repair provider to see if there are other options, such as used or a salvage yard part,” he said.
He says not to be frightened by salvage parts, as they are usually fine and come with warranties. But, he says, “It is very frustrating. And the frustrating part is you are paying for the car and you can’t use it! ”
Don’t be surprised if you have to wait a long time for a car part, and don’t waste your money.