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    What is catalytic converter theft and how can you prevent it?

    We lift the lid on how to prevent your catalytic converter from being stolen and being left with a big repair bill

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    Best ways to prevent catalytic converter theft

    23.02.2022

    Catalytic converter theft: how to prevent it

    Written by

    heycar editorial team

    Catalytic converter theft is on the rise and as we've seen in the press of late, the thieves are getting ever more brazen, stealing catalytic converters in broad daylight from cars parked on their owner's drives.

    Most cars on UK roads have a catalytic converter fitted. Catalytic converters have been fitted to the majority of petrol cars since 1992 and diesel cars since 2001.

    What is a catalytic converter?

    Your catalytic converter turns pollutants emitted from your car's exhaust into less harmful gases, but it's also a tempting target for thieves.

    Why do people steal catalytic converters?

    There are two simple reasons for this. Number one, nicking a catalytic converter is a relatively simple job – all you need is a flagrant disregard for the law and other people's property, a jack, an angle grinder and a few seconds of your time to get the job done.

    Most catalytic converters on modern cars are located under the vehicle towards the exhaust which makes it easily accessible to thieves. Lifting the back of a car and cutting out the whole unit can be done in no time at all.

    SUVs are more vulnerable due to their raised ground clearance. This means the catalytic converter is easier to get to and because they tend to have larger engines, these cat converters contain more precious metals.

    What is a catalytic converter worth?

    Reason number two is that some of the precious metals hidden inside your catalyst are worth more than gold. Inside a catalytic converter there is a ceramic element coated in various precious metals like platinum, rhodium and palladium.

    This is what attracts thieves - you can easily make £500 selling a catalytic converter on the black market.

    While few manufacturers have acknowledged there is a problem with catalytic converter theft, Toyota has stuck its head above the parapet. In a recent statement, the company said:

    "We’re doing all we can. We’ve shared police guidance with customers and we have developed and reduced the price of a ‘Catloc’ device which can deter theft and make it more difficult. Toyota teams in the UK and other countries are urgently exploring new technical possibilities to deter criminals as well."

    Toyota is working with the police, as well as talking to government about changes in the law around scrap metal sales that would make it harder for criminals to sell stolen catalysts for cash.

    However, these are criminal operations and Toyota's scope is therefore limited. A number of police forces are taking action and some forces, such as Nottinghamshire, are also starting awareness campaigns. It is vitally important for anyone who is a victim of this crime to report it to their local police force as quickly as possible.

    Catalytic converter theft prevention

    In the main, it remains older cars that are targeted because advances in efficiency and technology mean the latest generations of Toyota catalytic converters contain vastly lower amounts of precious metals, while still doing their job just as well or even better - this means their value for recycling is very low and they are not attractive to thieves.

    It's a serious problem then and while manufacturers are doing something about it, it will take these changes some time to filter down to the cars you're buying. There's still plenty you can do to prevent yourself becoming a victim though so keep reading for our top ten tips to stop your catalytic convertor getting stolen.

    How to stop your catalytic converter being stolen

    How to stop your catalytic converter being stolen Park to prevent access underneath

    But remember to consider pedestrians

    01/10

    In order to steal the parts, thieves need to slide under the vehicle and use cutting tools to detach the box from the pipes around it. This means how you park you car matters. Parking close to walls or fences can help, but remember not to block pedestrian access, especially for wheelchair users.

    Catalytic converters with a serial number

    Mark it to protect it

    @[email protected]#=img=#

    02/10

    Some garages will etch a unique serial number onto your catalytic converter so it can be easily identified if it is stolen. You'll also be provided with a sticker to be displayed in your window that indicates your catalytic converter is marked - which prevents offenders from targeting your vehicle.

    Ask a garage to weld the bolts shut

    Make it difficult for it to be removed

    @[email protected]#=img=#

    Source : heycar.co.uk

    Why are people stealing catalytic converters? How do you stop them? Here’s what to know.

    There has been an alarming trend of people stealing catalytic converters from cars, trucks, and buses because thieves often see value in the metals used to make the car parts.

    Why are people stealing catalytic converters? How do you stop them? Here’s what to know.

    Updated: Sep. 21, 2021, 11:09 a.m. | Published: Sep. 21, 2021, 11:09 a.m.

    There has been an alarming trend of people stealing catalytic converters from cars, trucks, and buses because thieves often see value in the metals used to make the car parts. (AP Photo by Robert F. Bukaty)

    448 shares

    By Katherine Rodriguez | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

    There has been an alarming trend of people stealing catalytic converters from cars, trucks and buses because thieves often see value in the precious metals used to make the car parts.

    In New Jersey alone, two school districts have reported catalytic converter thefts from school buses not too long after dealing with the remnants of Tropical Storm Ida.

    Here is what to know about why potential thieves are attracted to these car parts and how you can protect yourself from getting your car parts stolen.

    Why are thieves stealing catalytic converters?

    Thieves are motivated to steal catalytic converters because they contain precious metals, such as platinum and rhodium.

    Then, the thieves often sell the car parts for money on the black market.

    “What they’re doing is stealing the platinum out of them and the rhodium,” exhaust shop owner Aaron Harker said. “You can turn around and turn it into the junkyard and sell it and get money off of it.”

    Harker added that a would-be thief can steal a catalytic converter from the underbelly of a car within 5-to-10 minutes.

    Because the process is so quiet and fast, most people do not know if their catalytic converters have been stolen until they start their engines and hear a loud rattle.

    The parts are also expensive to replace, ranging between $2,000 to $2,500 for each catalytic converter.

    How do I protect my car against catalytic converter theft?

    There are three things you can do to protect yourself against catalytic converter theft.

    First, you can etch your license plate number on it. Law enforcement can then track your car part if it’s stolen. Some law enforcement agencies also hold etching sessions with local garages.

    Second, always park in a well-lit area. Setting your vehicle alarm and installing a bright motion sensor light might also help, too.

    And third, install an anti-theft device that consists of a shield or a plate that is bolted to cover up the catalytic converter.

    Note to readers: if you purchase something through one of our affiliate links we may earn a commission.

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    Source : www.nj.com

    What's a Catalytic Converter and Why Do People Steal Them?

    February 13, 2022 - A catalytic converter is part of your car’s exhaust system that converts harmful engine-exhaust pollutants into something less harmful to the environment.

    NEWS

    What's a Catalytic Converter and Why Do People Steal Them?

    Catalytic converter | Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

    By Rick Cotta February 13, 2022 Share More Share Options

    A catalytic converter is part of your car’s exhaust system that converts harmful engine-exhaust pollutants into something less harmful to the environment through a chemical reaction. Typically, most of the “bad” hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides in the exhaust are converted into “less bad” carbon dioxide, nitrogen and water vapor. Catalytic converters began showing up in many cars in the mid-1970s and quickly became almost universally used.

    Related: What Happens When You Overfill Your Car With Oil?

    Although they come in different shapes and sizes, catalytic converters are usually about the size of a loaf of bread (sometimes a flattened loaf) and are positioned in the exhaust system between the engine and the muffler. The converter needs high heat to function, so it’s placed as close to the engine as possible. Sometimes more than one converter is used.

    Why They’re Stolen

    Money is the main reason catalytic converters are often stolen. They contain three metals that aid in the chemical reaction that makes exhaust pollutants less harmful: platinum, palladium and rhodium. The prices of these metals have risen dramatically during the early 21st century.

    Priced by the ounce, platinum went from an average of about $530 per ounce in 2001 to about $1,100 in 2021 after it reached a high of $1,700 in 2011. Palladium went from an average price of $600 per ounce in 2001 to a high of nearly $2,400 in 2021.

    But it’s rhodium that’s been the most volatile. After averaging roughly $1,600 per ounce in 2001, it jumped to an average of about $18,000 in 2021, with a high that year of nearly $26,000. By contrast, gold went from about $300 per ounce in 2001 to roughly $1,800 in 2021, a sixfold increase.

    The rise in price of a converter’s three valuable metals results in a higher cost for the converter itself — and higher values for converters as scrap, as the metals can be recovered and sold.

    As a result, junkyards are more actively collecting catalytic converters, and some companies have sprung up that will purchase converters sent to them. While the value of a given converter varies tremendously, some figures seen in ads from “mail-them-to-us” companies range from about $140 to a whopping $1,500. The increasing value has prompted thieves to steal catalytic converters, often cutting them out from under a car parked right on the street.

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    Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

    Source : www.cars.com

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