How To Protect Your Car From Catalytic Converter Theft
(NewsReady.com) – Catalytic converters are a feature of all modern gasoline-powered cars. Most jurisdictions require them on new vehicles to meet emission rules, and they reduce the danger of inhaling exhaust fumes. Unfortunately, they’re also a target for thieves, and having yours stolen can be a costly experience.
Catalytic converter theft has soared 1,215% since 2019, one trade group found. It can take just two minutes to swipe one — but replacing it can cost thousands. Here's how to protect your car.https://t.co/aeWihFExJb
— NPR (@NPR) November 4, 2022
The actual catalysts in the converters are mainly the precious metals platinum and palladium, and there’s enough in there to make the units worth stealing. They’re conveniently located under the vehicle and can usually be stolen without triggering the alarm. Those with high ground clearance, like trucks and SUVs, are most at risk. Here’s how to avoid becoming part of the growing converter theft problem:
- If you can, don’t leave your vehicle where the public can get to it; if you have a garage, use it.
- Converter thieves often target parking lots — avoid quiet lots or park where a security camera overlooks your vehicle.
- Get your VIN engraved on the converter, as this will make it harder for a thief to sell.
- Spray the converter with high-temperature paint; again, this makes it harder to sell.
- Fit an alarm that can sense the vibration of a saw.
- Get a mechanic to weld steel plates or rebar around your converter’s mounts, making it harder to saw through them.
If your converter does get stolen, you’ll probably notice right away as the exhaust will be much louder. You should get your car checked right away to make sure the thief didn’t damage anything else. Also, check if your insurance covers non-collision damage, like theft.
Catalytic converter thefts have climbed 1,215% since 2019, and anyone can become a victim.
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