Why is There an Appliance Shortage?



As we write this, the US is nearing the two-year anniversary of the first known covid-19 cases on American soil. In March 2020, we all watched with bated breath as the pandemic began to make its impact. Almost immediately, shutdowns and lockdowns went into place to protect us as medical experts raced to learn about covid-19 and how to fight it. Most businesses were impacted by the shutdowns, but manufacturing businesses were hit the hardest. Suddenly, everyday items we once took for granted, such as toilet paper (remember the good old days when TP was so abundant we threw it in trees for fun?) were impossible to find!


Why Appliances Are Experiencing a Shortage

Although the impact was a bit slower, appliance manufacturers soon felt the blow of covid as well. Production of major and minor appliances came to a sudden halt. When it resumed, manufacturers were faced with labor shortages and playing catch-up before they could even think about making products for new orders. As we speak, many homeowners are still waiting for major appliances placed on backorder from six months to a year ago.


As if playing catch-up for 2020 orders and fulfilling the labor shortage weren’t enough challenges, appliance manufacturers have also faced a heightened demand along with the rest of the home industry. With more people working from home, they are paying closer attention to their home products and many recognize needs for upgrades as they and their families spend more time at home. Appliance sales were even higher in 2021 than in 2020--and manufacturers see no sign that homeowners are slowing down on their home product buying as we roll into 2022.


Supply versus demand, labor issues, and fulfilling backorders seem like plenty enough reasons for the appliance shortage. But, of course, there’s always more! Many manufacturers are also facing an issue with getting the necessary appliance components needed to build their products. Materials like tin have become more scarce, and as a result, more costly.


In a nutshell, what we are seeing is the domino effect of the pandemic and its shutdowns. We can only hope that as more suppliers and manufacturers return to work we will start to see a turnaround in shortages of appliances and many other necessities that are now hard to find. We will continue to update our readers about shortages and other effects the pandemic has had on the home industry. Stay tuned.


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