Car Care Tips for the Road Not Taken Part 5 As appeared in San Carlos Living Magazine, August 2020

 

Catalytic-converter theft

The catalytic converter is a component in your exhaust system that converts oxides of nitrogen (NOx) into less-polluting emissions, and they contain several valuable metals.  Toyota Prius cats have larger quantities of these metals, and pay higher prices at the metal recycler.  Thieves target these cars, in particular, for a quick “jack and hack” that’ll cost you a few thousand to repair, but nets them a couple hundred dollars or less. Every car is a potential target, and those parked unused for several days can attract the attention of the bad guys.  Your first clue is usually a car that sounds like the muffler fell off - the entire middle section of your exhaust system gets cut out with a power saw in a minute or two, often stealing or damaging the oxygen sensors, pre-cat and post-cat exhaust pipes, and sometimes even denting things with careless jack placement.  We can install catalytic-converter shields using special fasteners that protect the high-dollar parts and save you the aggravation and expense of repair and replacement after a theft.  Alarms don’t help much here, since thieves grab the parts so fast that lights and sirens don’t deter them.  

Use your car and enjoy the road, and come see us at Toole’s Garage for maintenance and repair, car-care advice, pre-purchase inspections and even recommendations for the most beautiful Sunday drives. 

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