How To Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft

by | Dec 6, 2022

Catalytic converters are very important. They turn cars’ harmful emissions into unharmful gasses that do not damage the environment. The problem is that catalytic converter theft has seen an enormous increase in recent history. Almost all cars these days have a catalytic converter, which means many people are at risk. And if yours goes missing, it will cost you north of $1,000 to replace. So what is the deal? Why are people stealing these? And what can you do to prevent catalytic converter theft?

Why is Catalytic Converter Theft a Thing?

As the world goes green, there are stricter car emission rules. Places like China have a huge air pollution problem, so the need for these converters has skyrocketed. Two of the most precious metals used to manufacture catalytic converters are palladium and rhodium. The price of palladium has gone from $500 per ounce five years ago to more than $2,000 today. The same is the case for rhodium. So, as you can see, people can make a fortune out of stealing catalytic converters.

How to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft

To save yourself from huge losses, you need to take all the right precautions. Here, we have combined a list of steps you should take to reduce the likelihood of losing a catalytic converter to theft.

Get Motion-Sensing Lights

Motion-sensing lights are a great way to avoid petty theft. These will always scare the burglars away. These burglars thrive in the dark because they can’t be seen. Naturally, when a light will shine on them, they are bound to run away. These will not only save your catalytic converters, but they will also prevent home burglaries.

Park Your Car in Well-Lit Areas

In case you do not have a garage and do not want to get motion-sensing lights, it will probably be a good idea for you to park your car in well-lit areas. If you’re parking on the street, try to do it under a lamppost. Again, as mentioned earlier, thieves thrive in the dark.

Engrave Your Catalytic Converter with Your VIN

It is also a good idea for you to engrave your catalytic converter with your vehicle identification number (VIN). What this will do is, if the thieves manage to steal the converter, seeing the VIN on the converter will alert the scrap dealer. It may prompt him to take action because he will know the converter is stolen.

Park Close to Other Cars

Let’s say you have two cars, a big SUV and a smaller one. Try to park the smaller one right next to the SUV. Why? This makes it extremely difficult for thieves to get under your car and steal the converter. Even if you do not have two cars, parking close to other cars that block the thieves’ entry to get beneath your car is a good way to prevent catalytic converter theft.

Weld the Heads of Catalytic Converter Bolts

Some mechanics suggest that you simply weld the heads of the catalytic converter bolts. This is an almost foolproof way and will make life hell for the thieves.

Use a Catalytic Converter Anti-Theft Device

With the increase in catalytic converter theft, many companies have introduced new products that will help you prevent catalytic converter theft. You could use a product like CatClamp, but note that you will probably need a mechanic to install it on your car. It is probably the best guard for your converter and you will certainly have that peace of mind.

Get Security Cameras

With increasing crime in the U.S. and all around the world, home security cameras are a must-have these days. They will not only prevent your catalytic converter theft but will save you from all sorts of trouble. With advanced home security systems, you can actually prevent crime from happening, because live security guards and AI are constantly monitoring your house. You will never feel safer.

What to Do if My Catalytic Converter Got Stolen

If someone steals your catalytic converter, contact the police immediately. If you have engraved your VIN number on the converter, tell the police and then contact local scrap dealers so that they can notify you if a catalytic converter of your VIN shows up.

How Will I Know if My Catalytic Converter Got Stolen?

You will know when you start your engine and you hear loud roaring noises. As you push the pedal, the sound will get louder. Your car will also not be driving smoothly.

What Vehicles are Top Targets for Catalytic Converter Thefts?

Almost all cars have catalytic converters, but most thieves will try to target higher (taller) cars. This is because it is very easy for them to slip underneath them and steal the converter. Typically, SUVs are the prime target for this reason.

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