A bad catalytic converter can cause a variety of problems. Check your catalytic converter for proper function. If you are not sure of its condition, it may be time to replace it. A big problem with your car is something you should always be aware of so you can get it fixed before it becomes a bigger problem.
Catalytic converters are known to be a safety issue, and are therefore a good reason to replace them. Diagnosing a defective catalytic converter in your vehicle is important so that you don’t replace a fully functional converter when it needs to be replaced.
In this post, we’ll look at the most common bad catalytic converter symptoms, location, and function and go through what makes them so attractive to thieves.
Table of Contents
9 Bad or Clogged Catalytic Converter Symptoms
Most common symptom of a bad catalytic converter is a sulfurous smell when the car is running at normal temperatures. There will also be a check engine light on your dashboard.
Check Engine Light
The check engine light is the most obvious indicator of a bad catalytic converter. With a bad catalytic converter your engine light will be on all the time. If the car is checked with a compatible OBD scanner, it will show you an emission-related trouble code that needs to be decoded with the help of the operating manual.
The most common problem code when it comes to a bad catalytic converter is the P0420 code. This is usually the result of an improperly tightened screw or a dirty air filter.
Acceleration Lag is another bad catalytic converter symptom. If you notice that the acceleration seems to slow down a little bit when driving over bumps or going up a hill, this is probably an indication that your catalytic converter is clogged. If you go into a gas station and fill up your car and it takes a long time for the gas to get to the gas pump, you may have to wait for the next tank of gas.
If you go to your car and it does not seem like the vehicle is responding as quickly as usual, it is an indication of a bad catalytic converter. The most common cause of this symptom is a badly clogged converter. It’s the same as having a blocked air filter. If the car accelerates slowly, you may need to have your catalytic converter replaced.
High or low fuel consumption
High or low fuel consumption is another indication of a clogged catalytic converter. If you are looking at your fuel mileage, you may notice that you are consuming more fuel than normal. This is another indicator of a clogged catalytic converter. If your fuel economy seems low, check your air filter and replace it if necessary.
Check your fluid levels and make sure that they are within normal range. If you are noticing that your fuel consumption is getting lower, that’s a sign of an unclogged catalytic converter. This means that the catalytic converter is working properly and filtering out particles.
Smell of sulfur
This means that there is a lot of pollution coming out of your exhaust system. A lot of cars produce high levels of smog, so it is a good idea to get it checked if your vehicle smells bad. If you feel uncomfortable, it’s probably a good idea to clean out the catalytic converter. Also, you can install an aftermarket catalytic converter. If you install one and it doesn’t seem to improve your fuel efficiency, it may be time to take it out and have it replaced. Don’t get stuck with a bad engine.
If the catalytic converter turns an odd-colored blue, it may be clogged and creating excessive heat. This problem requires immediate attention. If your engine isn’t running, it could also happen if your exhaust system isn’t working properly. In that case, unburnt fuel from the fuel tank might enter the catalyst and start a fire.
This mixture then ignites in the converter due to the heat and melts its inner material, causing even more blockages. A clogged catalytic converter will make your engine overheat, which could cause serious engine damage really fast, so you should not drive your car if you suspect that your catalytic converter is bad.
If the catalytic converter is clogged, the engine will run too rich, the engine will be damaged. It will also create a back pressure which will make the engine struggle to get rid of the exhaust fumes. If your car starts for two to three seconds and then dies, your converter might be clogged. It’s definitely worth checking it out. This may happen because it takes two or three seconds for the pressure in the exhaust system to build up, and for the engine to choke and shut off.
You may be at risk of an engine failure if your catalytic converter is damaged or clogged. This will lead to an increased emission of the engine. The overall purpose of the catalytic converter is to remove all emissions. It doesn’t care what they are; it just removes them. You can often see this by the exhaust smoke coming from your exhaust pipe. It’s usually noticeable when accelerating or at idle. If you don’t have a car check up done on a yearly basis, your car will most likely fail an emission or smog test.
When the catalytic converter is clogged, it restricts the flow of oxygen in engines, and engines require a lot of oxygen for proper fuel combustion. Misfiring engines lead to overheating and burning of the gases in the cylinders. Your engine is likely to be misfiring. If this is the case, you should address the problem immediately, before it gets worse.
Rattles or other noises
When the catalytic converter breaks apart, it can cause the honeycomb to get worn and this can cause it to break up into small pieces. The catalytic converter may make a rattle when you rev your engine, but this is normal. You should ask your friend to step on the gas pedal while you try to listen under the car to see where the noise is coming from.
What is a catalytic converter?
A catalytic converter is a device that is installed in your engine. It converts toxic gases and other harmful substances into less harmful substances. Most of the harmful gases and other pollutants are released out of your exhaust system. The catalytic converter contains catalyst, which is made of precious metals. These metals are essential for removing harmful substances from your engine. When you’re driving, the catalytic converter works to remove poisonous gas from your vehicle.
Catalytic converters were first introduced in 1970s. They work like a filter and can eliminate the emissions of carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, nitric oxide, and hydrocarbons. If your catalytic converter is clogged, it cannot perform its job. You should have your car’s catalytic converter checked at least once every three months. What can you do if the catalytic converter is clogged?
If the catalytic converter is clogged, your engine will be misfiring and will make a loud rattle. You should ask your friend to step on the gas pedal while you try to listen under the car to see where the noise is coming from. The catalytic converter may make a rattle when you rev your engine, but this is normal.
What could damage a catalytic converter?
If you have a car with an internal combustion engine, you should check your catalytic converter frequently. You can do this by yourself if you want. You just have to follow a few simple steps to check your catalytic converter. What happens if your catalytic converter is clogged? Your engine will misfire and may not run at peak performance.
Your car will not be able to do a lot of work. A catalytic converter will purify the exhaust gas emitted by your car’s engine. The catalytic converter is a device that will oxidize the carbon monoxide, unburned fuel, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, and carbon dioxide produced by the engine. This means that the catalytic converter will eliminate the harmful gases produced by your car’s engine. If your catalytic converter is clogged, your car will emit a high amount of these gases.
Your car will lose its ability to drive and will need a new catalytic converter. It will not work like it used to. Your car’s catalytic converter is supposed to oxidize carbon monoxide, unburned fuel, nitrogen oxides, hydrocarbons, and carbon dioxide. When your catalytic converter works properly, it eliminates the gases created by your car’s engine.
Yes, it can cause it, but it’s more likely that your engine will just shut off and not run until you fix the damaged catalytic converter. One of the things that could cause a clogged catalytic converter is a failed O2 sensor, which could cause an engine to run lean, increasing the possibility of engine damage or even failure.
The average lifespan of a catalytic converter is about 10 years, or 100,000 miles. Despite these issues, there are many things that can affect the lifespan of a catalytic converter, like the quality of the converter, the type of vehicle it’s in, and how well the vehicle is maintained. You don’t want to run into issues later on if you don’t check your catalytic converter before leaving for the dealership for an oil change.
If you hear a rattling sound coming from the catalytic converter it can mean it’s bad. If you have an older vehicle, chances are there isn’t one particular sound you’ll recognize as the exhaust indicating a problem with the catalytic converter.