The leaves have barely started changing colors, but local stores are already getting ready for the dead of winter.

Their showrooms were filled with snow blowers and selling like hotcakes. It’s not that cold outside, but when it comes to business, you always are prepared early.

Over at Gerlach’s Power Equipment on West 26th Street, the showroom is filled with snowblowers.

“People are doing a lot of preseason buying because they remember last year when we could not get any new snow-throwers,” said Harvey Waldinger, sales manager, Gerlach’s Power Equipment.

They said people are doing a lot of preseason buying because last year stores had trouble getting the equipment because of supply chain issues.

He said they just reordered more because they have been selling them so fast.

“And we anticipate that should be good for the year. I don’t know if we will be able to order more, but the predictions have been for a pretty bad winter this year, so everybody is thinking ahead,” Waldinger added.

His best advice? Buy early.

“So that you are certain to get one because as the season progresses and it gets colder and the snow starts to come, things will really begin to move quickly,” said Harvey Waldinger, sales manager, Gerlach’s Power Equipment.

Kraus Department Store on Parade Street doesn’t sell snow blowers but have been very busy getting ready for winter.

“Most of my shovels are here. I have rock salt already available. I got more coming in. Ice melt is here. Probably in the next two weeks, I’ll have everything in stock completely full. Everything we order early just because it’s Erie. We could have snow in a week,” Adam Nowosielski, Kraus Department Store.

Both places said because of supply chain issues, they buy from suppliers early too.