Damaged catalytic converters can be quite dangerous because they get very hot, and if they’re not properly secured, they can set the vehicle on fire. Without a converter, your car would emit nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons. A catalytic converter converts carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons into carbon dioxide and water, and nitrogen oxides into oxygen and nitrogen.
To get a better result it’s mandatory to replace a new converter in your vehicle exhaust system. While buying a catalytic converter for your car, there are a few things that you should consider.
Ultimate Buying Guide For Catalytic Converter
- Choose the configuration
- Know vehicle specification
- Look for the VECI tag
- Choose the Converter Grade
- Select the brand
- Make a professional check
- Don’t miss the Oxygen Sensor
- Ask for warranty
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Choose the configuration
According to the type of installation process, converters are two types direct fit catalytic converters and universal fit catalytic converters. The direct-fit parts are designed to fit in a vehicle exhaust system. They get fit without making any additional adjustments. When choosing the direct converter, you must know the pipe’s exact diameter.
On the other hand, the universal fit converters are designed to fit any type of exhaust of any diameter. This type of converter needs adjustment of length and diameter for installation. Installation of a universal fit converter is a little tiresome, but they are comparatively low in cost.
Know vehicle specification
You must know your car’s different specs to get a compatible catalytic converter for your vehicle. Most auto parts are made for the specific make, model, years, and transmission type. Knowing these will help you narrow the search and make it easy to find the compatible one. To have overall basic knowledge about converters, you can have online research.
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Look for the VECI tag
If you know where the VECI tag is, you can estimate your vehicle’s certified emission level. You will find this under your car hood or in the engine bay. On that tag, you have to find the EFN(Engine family number)
This number will help you know whether the vehicle is certified for federal EPA emissions or California (CARB) emissions.
Choose the Converter Grade
For modern cars, there are two grades of catalytic converters available based on the emissions certification. The Heavy Metal (HM) Grade converter comes with Federal EPA Tier 0 and Tier 1 Certifications. On the other hand, the OEM Grade converter comes with CARB certification.
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Select the brand
Buying these auto parts from a well-known brand is a good idea. They give you a guarantee of getting a quality product. Also, you can see the specification along with the installation and application process from the user guide. That you cannot get if you buy parts from a local auto parts shop.
Make a professional check
It’s important when any type of auto part to make a professional look to avoid leakage, fitment, and other problems later.
Don’t miss the Oxygen Sensor
The oxygen sensor allows the engine to manage the air-fuel mixture for clean emissions. Look if the converter you choose to purchase comes with an oxygen sensor or not. It’s better to buy one that has an oxygen sensor.
Ask for warranty
Most valuable aftermarket auto parts like catalytic converters come with up to 6 months to a one-year manufacturer warranty. The warranty will allow you to repair or replace the component for free or with a minimum charge.
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