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Why thieves target vehicles’ catalytic converters?

Why thieves target vehicles’ catalytic converters?

Theft of catalytic converters from the exhaust system of vehicles has become a growing problem in most parts of the world.

A catalytic converter is a critical component in modern vehicles, designed to reduce harmful emissions and promote environmental sustainability.

It is an integral part of a car exhaust system, positioned between the engine and the muffler. The primary functions of catalytic converters include pollution reduction through oxidation and reduction reactions, ensuring vehicle emission compliance with regulations, and facilitating the conversion of harmful gasses like carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, and unburned hydrocarbons into less harmful substances such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and water vapor.


Catalytic convertes
Catalytic converters

The rising value of precious metals within catalytic converters has fueled a concerning trend of catalytic converter thefts.

People steal catalytic converters for their precious metal content, including platinum, palladium, and rhodium. These metals are valuable on the black market due to their scarcity and high demand in various industries.

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The ease of access to catalytic converters underneath vehicles, lack of identifiable markings on stolen components, quick turnaround for profit from theft to sale, and increasing metal prices all contribute to the appeal of this crime.

Theft prevention

Catalytic converters
Catalytic converters

To prevent catalytic converter thefts, advanced security measures can be employed.

Thefts from vehicles that are higher off the ground appear to happen more frequently, but even so, it doesn’t take much for a thief to jack up a car and remove the converter “in just minutes.”

He says there are some measures drivers can take to protect their vehicles. The two cheapest and most cost-effective ways are:

  • Park in a garage when possible.
  • If you can’t park in a garage, park in a well-lit area.

Some people goto their local garage to have the converter welded to the vehicle frame or have mechanics put a screen over it. That may be a bit extreme, but anything that makes it more difficult to cut out the converter can help deter a would-be thief.

Car security cameras can act as vigilant watchdogs capturing activities around the vehicle.

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