Why is a Catalytic Converter so Expensive and How do You Keep it From Breaking?

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Having and using a vehicle can mean maintenance and repairs—some of which may cost more than others. Your catalytic converter is expensive because it is a very complex part. It is made up of specific precious metals including platinum, palladium, and rhodium. These are some of the main precious metals required to make a catalytic converter, which need to be found in their natural form. Using these metals is not as simple as it is with metal or aluminum parts.

The costs for repairs or replacement can range from $1000 all the way up to $1800. The good news is that there are things you can do to keep it from breaking, and emergency cash options when you need to fix it! 

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What Do Catalytic Converters Do?

Catalytic converters are found on petroleum-fueled vehicles and were manufactured after 1993. Petroleum is refined to produce gasoline, kerosene, and diesel oil. And so, most vehicles on the road you see including vans, RVs, cars, and trucks rely on petroleum for fuel. 

Catalyst converters covert the harmful emissions/toxic gases that come from using petroleum as fuel, into their inert forms. This chemical reaction occurs through extreme heat inside the converter. 

Having a properly working converter important part of preventing smog and pollutants. Its main purpose is to convert toxic gasses emitted by a gasoline-fueled vehicle into non-toxic gases. With all the drives the average person takes and with the number of vehicles on the road, these little converters do a big job. 

Where Can I Find a Catalytic Converter on My Car? 

If your car isn’t very old, chances are that your Catalytic converters is located under your vehicle. In the past, they used to be placed under a car’s hood right next to the car’s engine, as the heat is necessary for the converter to work. Although this was convenient with temperature it did cause issues like vapor lock. And so, over time it was moved to underneath the car. However, this caused some vehicle problems, like vapor lock.

The Two Types of Catalytic Converter 

There are generally two kinds of Catalytic Converters:

  • A Two-Way Converter— a two-way catalytic converter oxidizes carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide and oxidizes hydrocarbons into carbon dioxide and water.
  • A Three-Way Converter—a three-way catalytic converter filters emissions just like a two-way converter, but also controls the emissions of additional harmful chemicals called nitrogen oxides– (nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide). Three-way converters are uncommon. as they produce an unwanted chemical by-product of small amounts of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide.

How to Maintain Things Prevent the Need for catalytic converter replacement? 

Although regular wear and tear happen with any car parts, there are simple things you can do to keep your catalytic converter from breaking: 

Keeping it Clean 

You can clean your catalytic converter yourself or take it to your mechanic. Automotive supply stores usually have cleaners, or a mixture of hot water and degreaser can help. Regular cleaning of both the converter and tailpipe can remove clogs and keep airflow/exhaust flow going. This can prevent to larger problems such as muffler issues, overheating, and exhaust system issues. 

Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs!

If you have a check engine light, or other sensors of your vehicle are going, off make sure to get everything checked. Although these warnings may not be directly related to your catalytic converter at the moment, it could later on, if things get worse. 

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Monitoring the Fumes from Your Exhaust Pipe

The exhaust gases coming from your car can tell you whether you have a bad catalytic converter. Blue smoke and the smell of rotten eggs usually mean that there is something wrong! Paying attention to your car’s fumes can mean small repairs, rather than replacement. 

General Maintenance of the Vehicle with a Professional 

No matter if your vehicle is a used car or a new one, get it checked and maintained regularly. Regular maintenance like oil changes, using oxygen sensors, back pressure checks, emission testing, can prevent the need for a new catalytic converter.  

For example, coolant and fuel leaks can destroy a catalytic converter. Those leaks usually come from a failed head gasket, or old fuel injectors, spark plugs, or even weak ignition coils. This is why it is important to get your vehicle maintained by a professional.

The catalytic converter or your vehicle is an important part of reducing and preventing toxic gases into the air. Because of the specific materials needed to make this unique part, repairing or replacing one can be expensive. 

At Max Cash® Title Loans, we are here to help you when you need help to pay for car repairs, or when you need cash to replace your catalytic converter. The loans that we service are affordable, flexible, and convenient.4 And we can help you with the process 7 days a week. To apply for the emergency cash that you need through a car title loan, give us a call or head to our website. Once approved you could have the funds you need in as little as 24 hours!1 2 Start with an online title loan today.