CAPE CORAL, Fla. — Southwest Florida air conditioning businesses are busier than ever.
But they're facing one big challenge - which is also affecting their customers; finding the units and parts needed on a timely basis.
Below is an edited transcript of our conversation with Jim Miller, the owner of Deep Blue Air in Cape Coral.
WFTX: How's business?
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR: Business is good. We're staying busy,
WFTX: Where are we now compared to a year ago?
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR: A year ago, things were becoming a concern. And now they're turning into real concerns. We've had homeowners that have waited up to two months to get an air conditioner. Luckily, we've been able to make some adjustments and get them cooling for the time being. We have an issue throughout the supply chain. From insulation, copper and aluminum. These products, they're just not coming in. The cardboard. Even the cardboard to shop this items is a problem to get. Duct work has increased 20-30% over the last year.
WFTX: You're talking about pricing here, right?
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR: Yes. Absolutely. Pricing. And we also run into shortages because all of our (suppliers) seem to be allocation. They can only buy a certain amount. And then their manufacturers cut them off.
WFTX: Do you have any timeline or what you would advise people during this challenging time?
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR, INC: If you have a concern about your air conditioner, right now, you should look to the future. And at least get something ordered or secured. Because right now, We just don't know what's going to happen in the next year. And it's going to be a rocky road. I've talked to my supplier and manufacturers. Nobody can definitely give an answer on when these items might be available.
WFTX: You are not the first dealer in any industry to tell us to buy now, and figure it out later. Get it while you can?
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR, INC: The prices are going to continue to go up. That's not going to change for the foreseeable future. But right now it's just a matter of securing the equipment and sometimes even the parts to do the installs.
WFTX: Jim Miller, owner of Deep Blue Air based in Cape Coral. We thank you so much for speaking with us.
JIM MILLER/OWNER OF DEEP BLUE AIR, INC: Thank you, for having me today.