Catalytic converters are devices that are found in many types of motors, including the ones used in vehicles. The purpose of a converter is to break down pollutants so the exhaust emerging from the vehicle are less harmful to the environment. While converters will work efficiently for years, the day will come when it needs to be replaced. Here are four signs that indicate the time has come to think about a replacement.

Lower Performance

One of the first signs you’ll notice is a change in the exhaust emerging from the system. This happens because the converter is not breaking down the gases properly. The result of that lack of breaking down results in back pressure that can built up to an unsafe level. As the situation worsens, expect the pressure to interfere with the way the engine runs. You may find the vehicle is more difficult to keep running or that the acceleration becomes sluggish.

As the residue inside the system begins to build up, it will melt as the motor begins to warm. That will eventually lead to more serious problems and require repairing or replacing parts of the motor as well as doing something with the converter. If caught early on, there might be a chance to repair the device. In most cases, replacement will be the better option.

Reduced Fuel Efficiency

A failing converter will also have an adverse effect on the amount of distance you can travel on the same amount of fuel. As the problem worsens, the efficiency will continue to deteriorate. Faster than you can imagine, you will be stopping more frequently to fill the fuel tank. You will save money and wear on the engine if you go ahead and invest in a new Honda catalytic converter sooner rather than later.

Increased Carbon Emissions

In a diesel motor, a properly functioning converter will break down carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide. This reduction in particulate matter goes a long way toward easing strain on the motor and also supporting the function of the exhaust system. As the converter begins to fail, the process of diesel oxidation catalysts becomes less efficient and more carbon monoxide passes into the exhaust.


Engine issues that cause overheating can cause damage to the converter. If you notice a difference in performance after a radiator hose fails and the engine overheats, it may be necessary to replace the converter. A similar effect can occur if the fuel pump fails and produces an unusually rich mixture. The mixture causes additional heat and stress that can damage the engine and in turn cause problems with the converter.

If you suspect that something is off with the exhaust system, the problem could be the catalytic converter. Take the care to a professional who can check the motor, converter, and the exhaust system components. In many cases, the problem can be isolated and resolved faster than you expected.


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