Catalytic Converter Thefts Are Skyrocketing: Here’s Why!

In 2021, catalytic converter thefts significantly increased to nearly 66,000 reported cases nationwide. This doesn’t count the innumerable number of unreported thefts.

So why does this specific part get swiped so often from so many different vehicles? There are several reasons, but the principal reason is that this car part includes precious metals internally, making it a beacon for would-be metal thieves.

Before we dive into how you can protect your catalytic converter, let’s first look at precisely what a catalytic converter is. Then, we’ll discuss how to protect against car thieves.

So read on!

What Is a Catalytic Converter?

A catalytic converter is a required emissions control part required on all vehicles in the United States. It helps reduce toxic emissions and other harmful air pollutants.

The part is attached to your exhaust system and absorbs many of these harmful emissions. Therefore, catalytic converter protection is vital.

Why Are Catalytic Converter Thefts Becoming So Prevalent?

Catalytic converter thefts are becoming more prevalent because more would-be thieves are getting wise to the fact that there is scrap metal money to be had from the parts. Additionally, with the advent of additional admissions controls and energy-efficient vehicles that may feature two catalytic converters, the problem is compounded.

Which Vehicles May Have Especially Sought-After Catalytic Converters?

As mentioned above, vehicles moving closer to emission-free operation are especially susceptible to catalytic converter thefts. Additionally, newer cars that ride higher off the ground are at a higher risk because they are easier to get under quickly and easily.

Top 10 Most Sought-After Vehicles for Catalytic Converter Thieves

According to Carfax, the ten most targeted vehicles for catalytic converter theft are:

  • 2001-2021 Toyota Prius
  • 1990-2022 Ford Econoline
  • 1985-2021 Ford F-Series
  • 1989-2020 Honda Accord
  • 2005-2021 Chevrolet Equinox
  • 1999-2020 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2011-2017 Chrysler 200
  • 1987-2019 Toyota Camry
  • 2007-2017 Jeep Patriot
  • 1997-2020 Honda CR-V

The reasons behind these specific vehicles becoming targets vary; a significant factor is the quick availability of the catalytic converters in terms of access. In addition, thieves want to find cars that can quickly climb under and use a reciprocating saw to remove the part and be gone with haste. 

How Do I Protect My Vehicle?

There are several methods that you can use to help protect your catalytic converter. The easiest is to park your vehicle in a closed garage whenever possible. If you must park the car in public, try to always do so in a well-lit area that is preferably monitored by a video camera.

Our preferred method, however, is to supplement these actions by customizing your vehicle. We deter would-be thieves by making it known via our products and services that the property is owned by a big, mean, beef-eating badass. That is certain to cut down on catalytic converter thefts.

We understand that it can be challenging to be intimidating when driving a Toyota Prius. With that in mind, we also offer body customization to help protect your catalytic converter and the precious metals therein.

Contact us today to see what we can do for you.