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Preventing Catalytic Converter Theft

Replacing a stolen part can be very expensive
Posted at 8:21 AM, Oct 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-22 09:21:23-04

Take a look at this, can you identify this car part?

Well chances are, thieves can and they're targeting them.

Catalytic Converters are expensive.

Waking up to find it's been stolen is pretty much the last thing you want as you are heading out to work.

But there are ways to protect vehicle.

That sound lets the whole neighborhood know when Michael Grimm is coming home.

The used SUV he bought just weeks ago quickly caught the eye of a thief who slid under his truck with a saw, and stole his catalytic converter.

Grimm says, "I came out this morning and started it up to go to work and it got really loud suddenly."

The person who stole Grimm's catalytic converter will likely trade that piece of metal in for an easy $100 to $200.

Far less than what Grimm has to pay for parts and labor to get his car running quietly again.

"It's an $800 repair job. It sucks. It's not right but, unfortunately, there's thieves out there and hopefully the police will stop this from happening," Grimm says.

While it seems like there is little you can do to protect your car from thieves, insurance companies ,like Allstate, do give a few tips, like having your catalytic converter welded to the frame of your car.

That pretty much makes it impossible for thieves to take it.

Having your car's VIN number engraved on your catalytic converter will tell a scrap dealer that the part is stolen and they can return it to you.

Automotive products, like the "Cat Clamp" and "Cat Strap" can be attached to the underbelly of your car preventing thieves from sawing off the converter and even setting off an alarm if they try.

We found those products can be purchased online for about $170.

But if that isn't in your budget, parking in well-lit areas away from trees and bushes is totally free.

Making your car more visible gives thieves less cover than the ones who crawled under Michael Grimm's car.

Grimm says, "I just want people to look out for each other and hopefully the bad people will stop doing what they're doing, but you know and I know you can't stop that."

It can take a skilled crook less than 5 minutes to steal your catalytic converter.

They can also damage your car's fuel line or wiring, which will cost even more to repair.

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