How Do You Know If Your Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

What’s up, driver? Theft of catalytic converters is not uncommon, and some automobile owners have experienced it. This article explains How Do You Know If Your Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

You won’t be able to tell whether your catalytic converter has been stolen just by looking at it, but you’ll know as soon as you start the car. Your car will produce a loud roaring sound when the catalytic converter is removed, which will increase louder as you press the gas pedal and few other signs which I will explain in this article.

Signs of a Stolen Catalytic Converter

Check Engine Light

How Do You Know If Your Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

Depending on your vehicle, you may have the annoying check engine light turn on. In a typical modern vehicle, a malfunctioning or non-functional catalytic converter will enable the check engine code. Most vintage or older cars may not offer this feature. Nonetheless, you can assess underneath the vehicle. And if your catalytic converter has been stolen, you would notice a missing component in your exhaust system.

Loud Engine Noise

Although the majority of carbon monoxide poisoning fatalities and illnesses occur when driving within a closed garage, a considerable number of deaths and illnesses from carbon monoxide poisoning occur while stuck in a vehicle or as a result of a defective exhaust system. A defective exhaust system is defined as one that lacks a catalytic converter.

The installation of catalytic converters to automobile exhaust systems has lowered carbon monoxide emissions by 95 percent. This implies that if your catalytic converter is taken, you will be exposed to 20 times the normal quantity of carbon monoxide. Even though emissions will be leaking from the area where your catalytic converter used to be, carbon monoxide can readily enter your vehicle through cracks in the body.

If fumes are reaching the cabin of your vehicle, especially if you have your window open, you can begin to exhibit symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning such as a headache. Additionally, people who are experiencing carbon monoxide exposure will have severely limited reaction times and will likely become confused and not be able to operate a vehicle safely increasing the risk of getting into a crash. Even if you are not exhibiting symptoms, do not think that you are safe. Sometimes people have no symptoms until it is too late.

Less Low-End Torque

You could be looking for alternative ways to improve horsepower if you’re interested in what the greatest bolt on mods for horsepower are. Unfortunately, having your catalytic converter stolen has no silver lining, and the marginal improvement in horsepower from removing one is minimal. Instead, it’s more likely to decrease your low-end torque.

If your car was built in the previous decade or so, having your catalytic converter stolen will result in a significant loss of low-end torque. Low end torque is torque accessible at lower RPMs, which is better for daily automobiles than high-end torque because we drive at lower RPMs.

Low-end torque makes your car more responsive and gives you a better overall driving experience. If your catalytic converter is stolen, your car may become less responsive, albeit this may not be evident to the ordinary driver.

Underneath Your Vehicle, Some Components Are Missing

How Do You Know If Your Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

Simply getting down on the ground and looking can tell you whether your catalytic converter has been taken. If your catalytic converter has been stolen, visually checking your exhaust system will reveal that it has been taken out.

Relevant: Which Cars Are Least Likely To Have Catalytic Converter Stolen

What Is Being Done To Prevent Theft Of Catalytic Converters?

A car that has been stolen might cost up to $2,000 to fix. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, numerous states are attempting to prevent metal theft by enacting legislation that control scrap metal transactions or sellers (NCSL). According to the NCSL, some of these rules may compel scrap merchants to document the scrap seller’s ID before taking the metal, or to document vehicle descriptions and images of the scrap seller’s components.

What Can I Do To Protect The Catalytic Converter In My Car?

  • When possible, park in well-lit areas and close to building entrances.
  • If you have a garage at your house, park your car inside and keep the garage door shut.
  • Have the catalytic converter welded to your car’s frame, which may make it harder to steal.
  • Consider engraving your vehicle identification number (VIN) on the catalytic converter — this may help alert a scrap dealer that it was stolen and make it easier to identify the owner.
  • Calibrate your car’s alarm to set off when it detects vibration.

About The Author

Avatar for Ibrar Ayyub

Ibrar Ayyub

I am an experienced technical writer holding a Master's degree in computer science from BZU Multan, Pakistan University. With a background spanning various industries, particularly in home automation and engineering, I have honed my skills in crafting clear and concise content. Proficient in leveraging infographics and diagrams, I strive to simplify complex concepts for readers. My strength lies in thorough research and presenting information in a structured and logical format.

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