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What Does A Catalytic Converter Do?

It is generally hard to know all the parts in your car and even harder to know what all of them do. A catalytic converter is one of those parts. In recent years, thieves have gained interest in this specific part, but what is it?

What is a catalytic converter?

A catalytic converter is a component of your car's exhaust system that, through a chemical reaction, transforms hazardous engine exhaust particles into less hazardous ones. Usually, the majority of the exhaust's "bad" hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen oxides are changed into "less harmful" carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and water vapor. Midway through the 1970s, catalytic converters started to appear in a lot of cars, and they swiftly spread to practically all of them.

Although they can be any size or shape, catalytic converters are often placed in the exhaust system in between engine and the muffler. The converter is positioned near the engine practically because it requires tremendous heat to operate.

Catalytic Converter Types

Reduction and oxidation are the two main catalysts that can be utilized in an exhaust system to manage different gases. The two most common types of catalytic converters are;


Only oxidation catalysts, which aid in converting carbon (I) oxide to carbon dioxide, are present. Incomplete combustion and partially burned hydrocarbon fuel is transformed into water and carbon dioxide.

Two-way catalysts are used in diesel engines, and the converter is made specifically to deal with diesel exhaust. These engines' converters aim to reduce the amount of soluble organic components in the exhaust. These are formed of soot-bound hydrocarbons.


With the inclusion of a reduction catalyst, this functions similarly to a two-way converter. This converts nitrogen oxides to oxygen and nitrogen gases.

Theft prevention

To avoid your car's catalytic converter from being jacked up;

• park your automobile in a closed garage, a well-lit area where it can be seen by many people, or next to a fence or wall

• Install a car alarm with sensors that will alert you if the car is being tampered with

• Install a CCTV camera system in your home or put up signs alerting people that it is active

• Get the catalytic converter's housing laser-etched with the VIN number of your car

Now that you know about it, and how valuable a catalytic converter is, you need to take the necessary precautionary measures to ensure yours doesn't end up on someone else's vehicle.

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