Is there a HVAC parts & equipment crisis looming ahead?

“Radically changing an existing supply chain is not as easy as it may sound, as creating a robust and secure supply chain will still need to balance the demands for cost efficiency. At the same time, new logistics considerations may also have an impact on supply chains and the changes thereto. In the near term, it is expected that companies will begin seeking out a more diversified supplier base, while looking to develop a flexible, but cost efficient, supply chain.

For the longer term, however, companies will need to undertake a more holistic analysis, which may lead to more drastic changes, such as moving supply chains nearby, or to different countries, as well as increasing the digitalizing of supply chains, with a view of creating a more sustainable operation for the future. A holistic analysis should be based on facts and include the modelling and testing of different scenarios. Change scenarios should also include a contingency plan that provides for the possibilities of having to quickly revert and adjust elements of the supply chain.”

  • Written by Mattias Hedwall, Global Head, International Commerce and Trade, Baker McKenzie

The above research was conducted about a year ago, and we are now seeing the evidence of material, parts, and equipment shortages and delays at local supply houses and around the country. Our Linc franchise partners continue to help each other where possible, but the crisis is real in many cases.

We are accustomed to having same-day or next-day parts for many of the items we use with our maintenance customers for most major manufacturers of equipment. This includes chillers, pumps, motors, and all the associated relays, and starters and control components that are required to operate the entire system effectively. Even the least expensive components can keep a machine or control system from running. We stock some of these items in our vans but it’s difficult to know what might fail at any given moment.

So, what is the dilemma? As stated in article above, the supply chains have been severely disrupted due to Covid. You would think it would be worked out by now but actually it has been getting worse in the last six months. We are proactively looking at any of the smaller components we can stock in our vans but if a large motor, pump, or compressor fails, lead times can be a problem.

We will continue to monitor the direction of this critical issue when it comes to keeping you comfortable or your process running with chilled or condenser water, steam, or hot water etc. We know you cannot go down for long periods of time, and we will discuss options for you as the situation arises.

Many things are affecting our lives during the pandemic, and this supply chain shortage is here for a while. This has been caused by larger than expected demand, cutbacks earlier in the pandemic, and the inability to move manufacturing easily to less affected areas of the world.

You can rest assured knowing that we will stay on top of these issues and do everything we can to keep you up and running.