How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Catalytic Converter?
Do you need to replace the catalytic converter in your vehicle? If so, you may be a bit worried about the cost of the repair, since this ranges significantly from one vehicle to the next. If you need this done right away, bring your car to our auto repair shop for an accurate estimate. Our team is known for providing the best service at excellent prices.
The Average Cost to Replace a Catalytic Converter
How much it costs to replace a catalytic converter can vary based on the make and model of your car. In some cases, you will find prices ranging from $2,000 up to $3,000. However, these prices tend to be higher than what you will find locally. It is possible to get the parts for as little as $400 in some cases – while others are much more expensive.
What makes a catalytic converter so expensive? There are various factors that play a role in the costs you can expect. The biggest factor is that this part is coated with palladium, rhodium, or platinum, which are all very valuable materials. The construction of a catalytic converter is also more complex than other car parts, making it more expensive to manufacture.
The costs also depend on the specific catalytic converter you buy as well. For example, you can find a small, “universal” fit model available for as little as $100, but it may not be the right option for your vehicle. However, you may need a more expensive model if your car has a more custom design, such as a dual exhaust with the catalytic converter built into the exhaust manifold (this is the standard in many vehicles today). These start at around $1,000.
Keep in mind, this is only the cost of the part. You also have the complex job of removing the old catalytic converter and installing the new one. That can drive costs up to $2,000 for some vehicles.
When and Why Do Catalytic Converters Need to be Replaced?
Catalytic converters often need to be replaced because excessive fuel gets into the internal catalytic surface. Impact damage can also lead to needing a replacement. You may need to replace your catalytic converter if you have signs of damage, such as:
- Using more gas than you used to
- Poor overall engine performance
- Check engine light is illuminated
- A rotten egg or a sulfur smell
- Rattling sounds coming from the engine
- Failed emissions tests
Most of the time, these parts will last 10 to 15 years or even up to the lifetime of a vehicle, so replacing them is not often necessary, though there are some models that need to be replaced more frequently. And remember, the best way to minimize the need for repairs is to have routine maintenance completed on your vehicle.
If you fail to notice the warning signs of a failing catalytic converter, significant damage to your vehicle can occur. Once that damage starts, it is harder to repair. The sooner you see a problem, such as a check engine light or misfires from the engine, be sure to get your car to your local auto repair shop quickly for diagnosis. These indicators can mean there is dumping of unburned fuel into the exhaust system. If that is happening, it will damage the catalytic converter and require a full replacement.
Why Are These Auto Parts So Expensive?
One of the things that can be frustrating is finding out that your vehicle’s catalytic converter is more expensive than most. They all do the same basic thing. Why are some of them so much more expensive than others?
Dealerships will typically charge you a much higher price than your local exhaust shop. It is important to turn to someone you trust to do the work and consider what you are getting. Some technicians may use an inferior product that does not have the right amount of precious metals inside of it. What is inside the part being installed really does make a big difference.
How do you know if you are getting a quality product? There are a few things to think about when making a buying decision:
- Choose a reputable brand. This is one of the biggest factors in minimizing the risk of ending up with a poor-quality product.
- Look at reviews online if you are unsure of that brand.
- Always compare warranties on these devices. Federal law requires a warranty on all emissions equipment.
- How is it constructed? You will pay more for one that is made with durable materials and methods, but that means it will last longer and often have lower emissions.
- Newer models that incorporate the catalytic converter into the exhaust manifold often cost more as well. That will drive up the costs if it is the type your car needs.
It is always a good idea to do your homework on ballpark pricing. A trustworthy auto repair shop is not going to charge you $3,000 to replace your catalytic converter, unless there is a lot more wrong with your vehicle than just that.
To Get a Quote, Give Us a Call
Many factors play a role in the cost of a catalytic converter. When you call our auto repair shop, you will get a quote for the work you need. Head to the Borst Automotive site today to give us a call or make an appointment.