Lead times have largely increased for new garage doors over the past couple of years and continue to be much longer than in the past. Lead times have gone from a couple of weeks to up to a couple of months with no definite guarantee. So, what has caused this? The answer is simply all the effects of Covid-19. Covid has truly changed the garage door industry. There are four major reasons for the delays which are all Covid related.
The first would be the large number of manufacturer employees falling sick or being exposed to Covid and having to isolate. All it takes is one positive case and several employees can be out. Hiring additional staff to cover shifts is not as simple of a solution as it seems. There is a shortage of workers therefore making it very difficult to fill positions.
Supply chain disruptions are another major factor. It is being reported that 9 out of 10 Canadian manufacturers are experiencing supply chain issues. Not only are supplier and trucking companies also dealing with large numbers of sick and isolating employees but there is also a massive trucker shortage. This lack of drivers puts a great amount of stress on the supply chain and delays have in turn become extremely common.
Steel shortages are also contributing to this matter. There has been a widespread shortage of raw material which can quite obviously have a severe impact on the industry. Steel mills cannot keep up with the demand while they are also trying to catch up from the shutdowns during the start of the pandemic. This is bad news for the garage door industry which heavily relies on steel in the manufacturing sector for doors as well as parts. The shortages are making delays very hard to predict and are a leading cause of the extended lead times.
The last part to this equation is an increased demand for garage doors. Supply just cannot keep up with the current demand. With so many people staying at home more often due to Covid-19, they are becoming more focused on home-improvements. People have more disposable income since they are not spending as much money on travel, restaurants, or entertainment outside of their home. Upgrading their garage doors is an easy, inexpensive way to improve the exterior of their home and it has an amazing return-on-investment. For these reasons the demand for new garage doors, especially custom ones, have become extremely popular.
Unfortunately, it is impossible to predict exactly how long the delays and increased lead time will continue for due to the ongoing circumstances. ONC Doors is working closely with our manufacturers to limit the delays as much as possible. We try to provide our customers with as accurate of a lead time as possible but regretfully at present it is very difficult to guarantee a timeframe. Hopefully this situation will improve in the coming months.