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What Happens If You Drive with A Bad Catalytic Converter?

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If you're concerned about what happens if you drive with a bad catalytic converter, your vehicle will typically be unable to breathe. You'll feel a sudden loss of power or even an engine stalling in some severe scenarios.

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If you're planning to continue driving with a bad catalytic converter, that's never a good idea because many things could go wrong. Of course, your vehicle will not technically stop functioning at all. Still, there are a couple of things that you must know before you make the decision and continue driving without a good catalytic converter.

This article helps you understand all that could go wrong when driving with a bad catalytic converter. It also highlights some basic information you need to know about the catalytic converter and its functionality. Finally, it will conclude with rough estimates of how much it will cost you to replace the catalytic converter.

Let's read more details about what happens if you drive with a bad catalytic converter!

How to Tell if Your Catalytic Converter is Failing

What is the catalytic converter, and what does it do?

Before we dive into the details of what happens if you drive with a bad catalytic converter, it's critical that you understand the purpose of this converter in your vehicle and what it does exactly. Once you have this understanding, you'll be able to judge yourself and expect what could go wrong when you drive with a bad Catalytic converter.

The catalytic converter is located somewhere between the engine and the exhaust system. This converter is responsible for converting the harmful emissions from the engine to less harmful gases that could go to the environment without causing severe problems.

This converter was installed in vehicles, not for fun. It was a requirement by the Environmental Protection Agency to improve air quality and protect people from air pollution that could happen because of vehicles.

The catalytic converter contains certain catalysts that work together to take out and convert harmful gases through some chemical reactions. These reactions don't take much time to happen.

Will a Bad Catalytic Converter Ruin My Engine

What happens if you drive with a bad catalytic converter?

Unfortunately, the catalytic converter is not designed to last forever, and there will be a time when it gets damaged completely. When this happens, you'll see significant issues, and understanding what happens if you continue driving with a bad catalytic converter is a great important piece of information.

Automotive experts put together a list of potential negative consequences that could happen when you continue driving with a bad Catholic converter. Let's look at some of these consequences:

1.    Clogged engine

Your engine is designed so that all the pathways must be cleared out and cleaned for this engine to function properly. When the catalytic converter is not functioning properly, it causes some clogging, which impacts your vehicle's overall performance.

The longer you drive with a clogged engine, the more problems could happen. Some of these problems might lead to significant outcomes that could damage the entire engine and cost you thousands of dollars in repair.

2.    Reduction in power

When the engine is not breathing, and when there is a lot of clogging through the catalytic converter, the engine will not produce the desired power. The engine doesn't need to be stressed to produce the desired energy. Otherwise, all you're trying to achieve when pressing the gas pedal is adding more stress to the engine.

Therefore, many people driving vehicles with bad catalytic converters complained about the loss of power, which can be a significant issue, especially if you're driving on the highways or on city roads where there's a lot of traffic around you.

3.    Engine jerking

At some point in time, and when the catalytic converter is very bad, you will see that the engine is jerking. A jerking engine is not a good situation because it can easily lead to more complicated issues that will cost you thousands of dollars for repair.

4.    Engine stalling

Engine stalling is another potential consequence of a bad catalytic converter. So as you're learning about what happens if you drive with a bad catalytic converter, you got to be prepared for some of these safety issues.

When your engine stalls out, it impacts your safety, and you might get to a point where you can't handle the car or control it while driving on the highways. As a result, your safety and the safety of people driving with you will be impacted.

5.    Engine misfiring

When the catalytic converter is clogged to a certain point, it might start causing the engine to misfire. Misfiring happens when the engine has a problem with a supply of fuel, air, problem with how the gas is exiting the vehicle.

A clogged catalytic converter can easily impact the way these gases leave the engine. Therefore, your engine will suffer and might trigger a check engine light if things get more complicated.

6.    Reduction in fuel economy

The worst thing that could happen when you drive with a bad catalytic converter is a significant reduction in fuel economy. Now we're all done with gas prices and imagine if you're adding more stress to yourself by consuming more fuel than your vehicle needs!

Therefore, before you continue driving your car with a bad catalytic converter, think long-term about what could happen in terms of costs and other costs that you're not paying attention to, including fuel and gas prices.

7.    Strong rattling noises

When the engine is not happy and can't breathe, it will start making rattling noises. Unfortunately, these noises can be extremely scary and might even result in more complicated things that might not be easy to handle.

That's why you need to talk to the mechanic and see your choices whenever you feel that you're dealing with a bad catalytic converter. Of course, we understand that replacing a catalytic converter is not cheap. Still, your mechanic should have a better idea about what you can do and what else you can implement other than waiting for your bad catalytic converter to cause problems to the other components.

Catalytic Converter Scrap Value by Serial Number

What to do with a bad catalytic converter?

If you confirm that you're dealing with a bad catalytic converter, your mechanic must implement one of the following options:

1.    Fix the converter

In rare situations, your mechanic might be able to repair the catalytic converter. However, this repair is not guaranteed, meaning that you might get to deal with some problems soon.

2.    Install a used catalytic converter

Since the catalytic converter is not cheap, some people might find cheaper ways of repairing a bad catalytic converter by installing used ones. However, you must be careful about where to buy these use converters and who's installing them for you, so you don't deal with additional complications soon.

3.    Install a brand-new catalytic converter

If you want clear results and don't want to deal with converter problems soon, you'll likely need to install a brand-new catalytic converter. Yes, this converter will be expensive, but that's a better choice than going with a used converter that might have certain problems you're unaware of.

4.    Sell your car

If you get to a point where you feel that your converter is going to be extremely expensive and additional repair costs will cost you more than 75% more than your vehicle's value, it might be a perfect time to sell this car.

Many people give up on their vehicles whenever they deal with problems with the catalytic converter, especially if their vehicles are not very expensive. In other words, if they do the math and compare the expected repair costs to the vehicle value, they can see that it's not worth the fix.

Don't be afraid about selling your vehicle if it has a problem with the catalytic converter, but the one thing to keep in mind is that private buyers might not be interested. Therefore, you might want to find a better choice that could handle the vehicle without any issues and still pay you the top dollar for this vehicle.

For example, Cash Cars Buyer is one of the top companies that could provide you with the best price for your vehicle considering its converter's problems. So reach out to us today by giving us a call at 866-924-4608!

How to Clean a Catalytic Converter

How much does it cost to fix a bad catalytic converter?

Yes, the catalytic converter is going to be expensive. Unfortunately, the converter might cost you somewhere between $945 and $2475, which is extreme when it comes to car repairs.

Remember that the converter price might differ significantly depending on where you install it. In other words, labor costs will be a significant component in the final bill, and if you decide to go to a dealership, you'd see a different price than when going to a small independent shop.

However, if you're planning to install a new catalytic converter, you want to ensure that the person installing it for you has the right skills. In other words, you don't want to save on labor costs a couple of hundred dollars to feel that you saved money.

Many things could go wrong if you use the wrong person, and if you want to achieve the best results, it's worth investing in someone with the right skills to install the converter.

Of course, if you are a mechanic or have the right skills and tools, you might save on labor costs completely. However, we would like to remind you that leaving it to professionals is a better idea, especially if you've never done a catalytic converter replacement before. It can be a little bit complicated.

How Much Gold Is in A Catalytic Converter

Catalytic converter theft in 2022

Since you're focusing on dealing with a bad catalytic converter, the other thing to keep in mind is that there is a significant trend nowadays in the number of people with stolen catalytic converters.

You must understand why these people are stealing the catalytic converter, not anything else in your vehicle. The reason is that the converter contains precious materials and metals that these thieves scrap to make the best money.

Therefore, the current scrap value of a catalytic converter is not cheap, and that's why we see a significant trend and the number of stolen catalytic converters.

So, if you're planning to install a new catalytic converter, you might want to consider the locations of where you want to store your vehicle or probably add certain devices that could help track your vehicle or send some warning signs to your phone, so you get a notification whenever anyone tries to get to your vehicle or try to steal your catalytic converter.

Will a Bad Catalytic Converter Ruin My Engine

Final thoughts

Your catalytic converter is one of the most critical components in your vehicle that's responsible for preventing harmful guesses from reaching the atmosphere and causing air pollution. You must drive without a good catalytic converter, so you don't cause additional problems and add stress to your engine.

This article walked you through all you need to know to help answer the question of what happens if you drive for the bad schedule to the converter. Some of the things that could happen include: your engine will not breathe and will always be stressed out. At certain points, your engine light starts showing severe outcomes like engine stalling, reduction in power, a significant reduction in fuel economy, and more!

Therefore, it's never a good idea to continue driving a vehicle with a bad catalytic converter. However, we understand that replacing the catalytic converter is not easy and cheap.

Therefore, if you feel that your vehicle is not worth replacing the catalytic converter, it might be a perfect time to sell this car and buy a better one that does not have a catalytic converter problem.

If you're looking for someone to buy your car with a bad catalytic converter, Cash Cars Buyer can always help you!

Cash Cars Buyer is one of the top-rated car removal companies in the nation that guarantees to pay you the top dollars and provide you with free towing despite your living location around the United States.

Our process is very straightforward and doesn't take more than a couple of days to get your car removed safely and for the most money.

All it takes you is to:

  • Describe your car's type and condition
  • Receive our instant free quote
  • Accept the quote
  • Get your car removed and receive your cash payment on the spot!

To learn more about our process and our team, you can reach out to us by calling us at (866) 924-4608 or by visiting our home page click on the free instant online offer.

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