GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Car-deer crashes are adding to the backlog for auto repair shops and a limited supply of rental cars is making thing more difficult for customers.

Body shops say repairs that used to take a few days or weeks can now take several months, depending on the vehicle. The biggest challenge is finding the parts, according to Jason Essex, the manager of Essex Body Shop in Grand Rapids.

“We have some vehicles sitting here, they’ve been here over a couple months just because we can’t get the parts from the manufacturer,” Essex said.

Essex said deer crashes are adding to the backlog as companies try to recover from supply chain challenges.

“What we’re seeing is such a backup of vehicles that had been waiting in line for a few months …. so we’re tackling on top of that the deer hits that are starting to come in. You just run into the issue with parts and that’s just backlogged everything,” Essex said.

It can also be challenging to find a rental car to drive until your car can be prepared. The rental car market has seen an increase in demand and is still recovering to meet pent-up demand from the pandemic, according to John Lovell, the owner of Breton Travel.

“There’s a shortage of rental cars out there and the rental car companies are gradually replenishing their fleet. With all the supply chain issues, they’re not doing it as fast as they’d like to,” Lovell said.

He said he is seeing some improvement over last year in availability, but prices in most cases are more expansive.

“I’ve heard of people, not recently, but a year ago using, renting U-Hauls to get around Hawaii because they couldn’t get any rental cars,” Lovell said.

Local body shops are not expecting a major change in part availability in the near future.

“I don’t see any relief, and talking to a lot of people in the industry and a lot of the suppliers that come around, they don’t see it either and we don’t know where this is going to end up. We’re thinking it’s going to be quite a while before we even try to get back on track with it,” Essex said.