Theft prevention tips for car owners: Secure your catalytic converter
Car theft is a huge problem across the United States and the theft of catalytic converters is on the rise. Catalytic converters are a key component of a vehicle’s exhaust system and contain valuable metals such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium. Thieves can easily steal catalytic converters, sell them to scrap metal dealers, and make hundreds of dollars in the process. To protect your vehicle, it’s important to take preventive measures. This article will cover five tips for preventing catalytic converter theft and what to do if your catalytic converter is stolen.
1. Know if you’re a target for catalytic converter theft. Vehicle models with ultra-low emissions are more likely to be targeted because they have catalytic converters that contain more valuable metals. Trucks and SUVs are also popular targets because it’s easy for thieves to slide under the vehicle and unbolt or saw off the catalytic converter.
2. Install an anti-theft device on your catalytic converter. Investing in an anti-theft device such as a steel shield, cage, or stainless steel cable is much cheaper than replacing a stolen catalytic converter.
3. Paint your catalytic converter. Some people recommend using a high-temperature fluorescent orange paint on your catalytic converter and then inscribing your vehicle identification number in the painted surface. This makes it traceable and a reputable scrap metal dealer may refuse to buy it.
4. Set an alarm or camera to catch thieves. You can turn up the sensitivity of your car alarm so that it goes off when thieves jostle your car. Alternatively, you can install a motion-sensitive dash cam that will notify you of a theft in progress or record the license plate of the getaway car.
5. Park in well-lit areas. Whenever possible, park your car in a closed garage or driveway and install motion-sensitive lights and cameras in your parking area. It’s also a good idea to get to know your neighbors and join neighborhood networks such as NextDoor to be aware of strangers in the area or reports of theft.
If your catalytic converter is stolen, it’s important to contact the police department as soon as possible and provide any identifying details you can. The cost of replacing a stolen catalytic converter can range from $1,000 to $3,000, depending on the vehicle make and model.
In conclusion, catalytic converter theft continues to be a problem across the United States. To protect your vehicle, it’s important to take preventive measures such as installing an anti-theft device, painting your catalytic converter, setting an alarm or camera, and parking in well-lit areas. If your catalytic converter is stolen, contact the police department as soon as possible and provide any identifying details you can.