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Do All Cars Have Catalytic Converters ?

  • Tips & Trips
  • Barrett Mohrmann
  • 4 minutes

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When people talk about cars, they don’t speak about catalytic converters unless it’s a cat-converter theft case. Since the 1970s, catalytic converters have been standard equipment for internal combustion engine vehicles. Most cars have a catalytic converter these days. 

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What is a Catalytic converter? 

Among the most important parts of your car’s exhaust system are catalytic converters. They serve an essential purpose by filtering out potentially dangerous substances from exhaust gases before they are released into the atmosphere. They are normally bolted to the exhaust pipe underneath the car. 

All modern cars come with a catalytic converter, which lowers emissions to lessen air pollution. Hazardous substances, including carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, etc., are present in the exhaust. Before the gas is released by the car’s exhaust, it is changed into less dangerous chemicals. It is called a “catalytic converter” because a catalyst is used to complete the process. 

Do all cars have a catalytic converter? 

The answer is “no.” Only cars with combustion engines can have catalytic converters, which didn’t become commonplace until the mid-to-late 1970s. 

Use of catalytic converter 

The catalysts inside the part convert harmful engine emissions from the exhaust pipe into less-toxic gases, hence the name ‘catalytic converter.’ 

Cars that do not have catalytic converters 

  • All electric cars 
  • Classic cars 

Why do many automobile enthusiasts refit their old cars with Catalytic converters? 

The main reason is that the law requires it in most places. Another reason is to reduce emissions and pollution.  

Do automobiles have more than one catalytic converter? 

Keep in mind that a catalytic converter functions in combination with an exhaust system. Dual-exhaust cars often feature a pair of catalytic converters. 

There may be more or fewer catalytic converters than exhaust pipes in a vehicle. Not all exhaust systems have a practical purpose, either. 

To meet emissions standards, some automobiles use two or more catalytic converters. In that instance, the engine’s gases would undergo conversion twice, resulting in exceptionally clean exhaust gases. 

Cars without a cat converter 

Both from a legal and technical perspective, a car cannot operate without a catalytic converter. The amount of potentially dangerous gases released by an automobile’s exhaust is governed by emission regulations. You may forget about conforming to such regulations without a catalytic converter on your car. 

Secondly, a catalytic converter is essential for the operation of a modern automobile. That said, driving without one will severely impact your vehicle’s performance. 

Older automobiles that don’t come with catalytic converters are an exception. Therefore, those automobiles are functional even though it is against the law to use them without a cat-converter. 

What happens if I remove my catalytic converter?

  • The car’s exhaust noise is going to be louder. 
  • The car will be rougher to drive .
  • Toxic gas exhaust emissions .
  • The car will be considered unfit for on-road usage.  

Why are catalytic converters stolen 

According to law enforcement agencies, theft of catalytic converters is at an all-time high. 

Scrap metal dealers value catalytic converters highly for their materials. Platinum, palladium, rhodium, etc., are some of the valuable materials in a catalytic converter. Since 1974, Catalytic converters have been standard in all vehicles.  Thieves can make more money by selling stolen catalytic converters to scrapyards and metal recycling facilities. The more palladium, platinum, and rhodium they contain, the more valuable they are. 

A catalytic converter can typically be removed using a saw or a wrench in just a few minutes. Catalytic converters are relatively hard to track. 

Tips to prevent your catalytic converter theft

  • When possible, park near building entrances and in well-lit locations. 
  • To make the catalytic converter more difficult to steal, have a mechanic solder it to the car’s frame. 
  • Place your automobile in the garage and secure all of the garage doors. 
  • Install a theft-prevention device. 
  • Install cameras and motion-activated lights in your parking area. 
  • Set the alarm in your car to sound when it senses vibration. 
  • Inscribe your VIN on the catalytic converter. 

No matter what your car type is, insurance keeps your vehicle and mind at ease. Reach out to us to get premium insurance at affordable rates. Get an insurance quote today.  

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