Automotive Maintenance And Detailing


Automotive Maintenance And Detailing

how much does catalytic converter cost ?.

Not many people will question the catalytic converter how much because this car device is less likely to break down, but it’s possible.


Catalytic converter is a part that help reduce the pollution from exhaust pipes of vehicles such as cars, trucks, buses, pick-up trucks.


It will be installed in vehicles with gasoline and diesel engines. Modern cars are already installed in factories.   Countries around the world have exhaust pollution control laws, so cars must have this part installed.


Vehicles with this exhaust filter system problem will not be able to pass the Transportation Authority’s Annual Emission Test until you correct them.


If you are one of those people who have been questioning how much does catalytic converter costs, we guess you are having a problem with your car.


Before going into price details, we want you to read the information below. A good understanding of catalytic converters will allow you to reasonably consider whether it is worth replacing, cleaning the cat, or selling your car.

What is the catalytic converter ?.

The catalytic converter is a circular or oval component mounted in front of the muffler under the car floor. If your car has two separate exhausts left and right, your car maker may also design to mount it on two separate pipes.

Why is it installed before the muffler? That is because the catalyst is responsible for removing the emissions from the engine. The reduced exhaust gas is then passed through the muffler and released into the air.

Within the catalog, there is a perforated, honeycomb-like cavity. This honeycomb-shaped thing is made from expensive materials such as platinum, rhodium, palladium, ceramic.

Hot gas containing hydrocarbons from the engine is reduced to its toxicity as it passes through these catalytic particles.


The cat installed in the car therefore plays an important role in keeping the air on the road less dangerous for inhalation. The toxic gas may not be 100% degraded, but it is enough that it doesn’t harm pedestrians’ health and cause acid rain on the atmosphere, like 30-40 years ago.


Cars currently manufactured must be equipped with a cat following the laws of each country such as America, Canada, Australia, Europe, Asian countries.


In Europe, the emissions value of pollutants is set. Car engine manufacturers are now required to achieve Euro 6 emission standards. Of course, Americans using European cars sold in America can also benefit from this standard.

What are the causes and symptoms of a bad catalytic converter ?.

If you are experiencing cat faults or warning engine lights, and check that the error is cat related. You do not quickly conclude that you have to change the new cat.


Modern cars can check the fault code via the OBD-II port in your car. The technician will use the OBD-II scanner to check what the error code is related to.


You can also purchase this device for yourself. It’s only 10-20 dollars cheap.


If the code is that say it is related to the cat, it could be caused by some other causes, such as a defect of one or two oxygen sensors.  Which you can check first by removing and cleaning it first.   If you are lucky the code disappear after cleaning, you may not have to pay at all.


However, the correct method to check is to measure the sensor’s ohms. If you find that the multimeter’s needle is not showing, the sensor may be faulty.

OBD-II scanner

The causes of catalytic converter failure include:

  1. Engine malfunctions. If the engine malfunctions, more fuel is injected than the air volume specified by the ECU, excess oil accumulates at the cat. The cat will begin to accumulate hydrocarbon soot and eventually clog.
  1. Removing the EGR. Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) is a device that recirculates the waste gas back and burns it in the combustion chamber before releasing it into the exhaust pipe. Some people will remove or block EGR because they think it will make their engine more powerful. But doing so will increase the exhaust soot and will make the cat more easily clogged up from the unburned hydrocarbon soot.
  1. Leakage of the cooling fluid. The coolant, if it leaks out of the engine’s cooling system in any case, it will also cause cat blockage.
  1. Use engine oil with the wrong viscosity specification. Choosing an engine oil with a higher viscosity than the manufacturer’s specification results in more non-combustible hydrocarbons than usual. These carbon deposits will eventually build up on the cat and clog up.

Symptoms when the catalytic converter is broken

The bad cat has an internal blockage, which will result in engine malfunction. If you encounter an error code about the cat and with these below symptoms, it’s time for you to replace the catalyst.


  1. The engine has less power. The cat was clogged, causing the exhaust to be trapped, resulting in the engine not working properly, causing the engine power drop.


  1. A bad smell of exhaust fumes. The exhaust smells like rotten eggs, which is why the cat doesn’t work properly. Causing the toxic gas like sulfide, ammonia to escape in larger quantities than normal.


  1. Loud & rattling noise from the catalytic. You may hear the sound of broken parts inside the cat while the engine is idling.


  1. White or black exhaust fumes more than normal. There may be a greater amount of smoke coming out of the exhaust than you have ever seen.


If you experience any of the above symptoms, there is a high probability that you need a catalytic replacement.


Can you clean the catalytic?

You can clean the catalyst both by a professional and yourselves.    However, self-cleaning may not be as clean as doing it by a professional.

If you search the Internet, you will find many catalytic cleaning professionals.   They clean it with special solutions, hot water, and high-pressure water. The result is the same as having a new cat without buying.

But if you clean it yourself, the results may not be as professional. You can use any cat cleaner from the market. You will need to soak the cats in this solution for several hours according to each solution. Then rinse with a high-pressure water jet used to wash the car.

In case the catalyst particles are in good condition, the cleaned cat can be reused for a longer time in your car.

How long does the catalytic converter last?

Catalytic converters are a component that lasts a long time if your engine does not have problems. You can use it for at least 10 years or until your car wears out, average at 12-15 years.


As mentioned, the cat is mounted almost in the last position of the engine. So by itself, it won’t cause damage to your engine. On the contrary, not maintaining the engine caused Cat to break.


Using the correct fuel and oil specification, changing the engine oil according to the maintenance intervals, paying attention to the car’s irregularities, and repairing it back to its normal state, will make your car and cat last longer.

How much does it cost ?.

Catalytic converters are relatively expensive car parts, as they contain the rare mineral mentioned above.   But it’s all you have to pay because you should be responsible for keeping the pollution on the road to a minimum.


If you end up needing a replacement cat instead of the old one, the budget you have to pay is approximately $ 300-2000.    It depends on what your car brand is.  The expensive luxury car often uses a high-quality part than standard vehicles.


The cats that are sold online or in the auto parts stores are both OEM and Aftermarket. Sure, you will get factory quality products if you choose OEM products. But you can also save money if you buy Aftermarket parts.


Aftermarket parts are custom-made parts that are shaped like OEM parts but are of lower or similar quality. Some manufacturers make OEM parts, but sell them with the brand removed. Therefore, you may get an Aftermarket product that is inexpensive in OEM quality.


The price you pay is for parts and labor in case you take your car to a workshop. But you can also save on labor costs if you buy parts and replace them at home.


Most modern cars cat and exhaust pipe are equipped with removable clamps so they can be easily removed when car maintenance is required. So it’s easy for you to do it yourself.


If you are unable to do it yourself and need to bring your car to a cat exchange at the car workshop, you will have to pay an hourly fee. You may need to check out the expenses from your local garage before putting your car in for repairs.

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