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C.O appliance stores, customers face significant shortages, back-orders

COVID-19 has caused factories to limit their production of appliances amid growing demand

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Buying a new appliance for your home usually can take a couple of days, but a shortage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has made that process a lot longer, frustrating both sellers and customers.

David Johnson, general manager of Johnson Brothers Appliances in Bend, told NewsChannel 21 on Tuesday that buying an appliance now can take up to six weeks.

“There’s frustration all around,” Johnson said. “We are frustrated (and) the customers are frustrated.”

Johnson said when the pandemic began, the supply from manufacturers was steady. But that changed in June.

For example, Johnson said a refrigerator manufacturer that might have been making 20,000 refrigerators a week before COVID-19 is now only making 10,000 -- while demand has increased to 30,000.

“The demand has gone up significantly,” Johnson said. “A lot of people, because they have stayed home, have done remodel projects they wouldn’t normally do, or weren’t scheduled to do.”

Johnson said the demand has come with some positives: a 25% increase in sales.

Bradley Sanchez of Tri County Climate said they also have felt the effects of the shortage. Sanchez said buying an air conditioner or furnace from his store used to only take a few days, but can now take two months.

Johnson advised anyone looking to buy an appliance to plan ahead, and to come in sooner, rather than later.

Bend / Central Oregon / Top Stories
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Jordan Williams

Jordan Williams is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Jordan here.

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