One of the most common automotive-related crimes today is catalytic converter theft. These components can be found under every car, SUV, van, and truck. Catalytic converters are essential in turning dangerous engine fumes into harmless vapors before releasing them into the atmosphere. It is a requirement for vehicles to have the “cat” in their exhaust systems.
Why Do People Steal Catalytic Converters
A catalytic converter is an emission control device that catches the eyes of many thieves because they are made of precious metals, such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium. The value of some of these metals has increased dramatically in recent years, which is why there has been a spurt in these crimes.
In fact, an ounce of palladium is now worth more than an ounce of gold. Rhodium, on the other hand, is 6x the price of gold, making it worth more than $10,000 per ounce! For thieves, a catalytic converter is a win compared to a wedding ring or luxe watch. The worst part is that it takes as little as several minutes for a thief to get under your car to remove it. Once these criminals get their hands on your catalytic converter, they can sell them on the black market for a good sum of money.
Do Thefts Target Certain Cars
With the exception of electric vehicles and cars before 1974, no vehicles are safe from catalytic converter theft. However, there are trends that thieves tend to target luxury vehicles, hybrid vehicles, and cars with higher clearance (SUVs and trucks). These automobiles tend to have more value than others.
How to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft
The cost of replacing a catalytic converter can be anywhere from $3500-5500. While we will gladly install a new catalytic converter for you, we want to help you one step further by preventing this event from happening to you. Some preventative measures you can take include parking in well-lit areas or adding extra security with an alarm or camera. However, the best way to combat it is to install an anti-theft device.
At Village Transmission & Auto Care, we can prevent you from becoming a victim of catalytic converter theft by installing a cat shield. We start by engraving the catalytic converter with your vehicle’s VIN number, label it with red paint, and install a protective shield to ensure maximum protection. The cost of this service is approximately $799 on most vehicles, and it adds an extra layer of protection against theft. It is also much cheaper than having to spend thousands of dollars to replace one.
Let the experts at Village Transmission & Auto Care protect your catalytic converter and save you money on unnecessary repairs down the line. We invite you to give us a call or visit today!