The catalytic converter is a part of the emissions system in your vehicle. It’s found close to the engine and is meant to convert potentially harmful environmental pollutants into benign gases when they are released from the exhaust stream. These days, every car on the market comes equipped with a catalytic converter because of an increased environmental awareness of dangerous pollutants and gases being released by vehicles.
What is it? And why do I need one?
The catalytic converter is a device that is designed to help reduce the pollution released from the engine. It allows a chemical reaction to take place in the exhaust system, by turning unburned hydrocarbons into fully combusted hydrocarbons before they are released into the atmosphere. The main role of the catalytic converter is to ensure that your vehicle does less damage to the atmosphere and environment.
Emissions released from automobiles have always been a concern for environmentalists. Over the past 50 years, they have been putting pressure on the government to regulate the automobile industry. In 1975 the U.S. government began enforcing a law that requires all car manufacturers to install a catalytic converter device into all cars in an effort to reduce pollution.
You need a replacement when you experience:
- Poor engine performance
- Check engine light comes on
- Dark exhaust smoke
- The smell of rotten eggs from the exhaust
Your catalytic converter may also experience overheating problems, which can be caused by faulty oxygen sensors or a misfiring spark plug. Even fuel related problems can cause damage to the catalytic converter calling for a replacement as well.
What happens if I don’t get it replaced?
If you don’t replace a poorly functioning or damaged catalytic converter you can do internal damage to your engine, or in some cases an overheating catalytic convertor will catch fire. Failing to replace a damaged catalytic converter allows harmful pollutants to be emitted from your vehicle. In order to preserve the environment, it’s best that you get your catalytic converter replaced as soon as you can.