South Ogden Catalytic Converter Service

tuneups_headerOne of the most important components of your exhaust system is the catalytic converter. Its main function is to reduce the toxicity of the emissions from your engine. This makes cleaner air for everyone and improves overall engine performance. At Tunex South Ogden, our service experts have the expertise to address any catalytic converter issues you may encounter. We are conveniently located to serve South Ogden and the surrounding areas.

What is a Catalytic Converter

The catalytic converter plays a major role in your vehicle’s exhaust system. This component, most commonly referred to as the cat, filters, or “converts”, the polluting byproducts released by your vehicle’s exhaust.  The cat is located inside your exhaust system. It looks like a honeycomb and is made up of precious metals like gold, platinum, rhodium, and palladium. These metals are able to help filter out the pollutants. Most modern vehicles have a single cat installed in their exhaust pipe, while some newer luxury vehicles feature two cats in-line.

What To Watch For

The average life span of a cat is around 100,000 miles or about 10 years. There is a chance that something may go wrong and you will need to have it replaced earlier.Most problems with the catalytic converter will trigger your check engine light to come on. It is always important to have your engine checked when the light is on, but in the case that your catalytic converter is malfunctioning, it is especially important to have your vehicle fixed. Problems with the catalytic converter mean that your car could be emitting harmful gases. Problems with your catalytic converter can also cause poor vehicle performance, or be evidence of other engine problems. Winter pollution is extremely high in Cache Valley and makings sure that your catalytic converter is performing correctly can go a long way in helping to fix the problem.

How Catalytic Converters Help the Environment

 

Vehicles are a major cause of air pollution. They create a lot of hazardous gases and pollutants such as carbon monoxide, nitric oxide, and unburned hydrocarbons. These gases hurt our air quality as well as the environment. In Utah, protecting our air quality is especially important. During the winter months, we experience inversion which makes it difficult to breathe and can ruin our view of our state’s gorgeous scenery. The catalytic converter in your vehicle helps to cut down those pollutants and helps to protect our air.

One of the biggest pollutants caused by automobiles upon the environment is caused by the release of carbon into the air. A catalytic converter does this by oxidizing the pollutants that are going through the exhaust. This causes carbon monoxide (CO) in the engine to be released as carbon dioxide (CO2), which is far cleaner for the air that we breathe. This simple component makes the atmosphere healthier for people, which is a huge deal here in Utah where we suffer from inversion and poor air quality.

 

How do Catalytic Converters Work?

A catalytic converter reduces the amount of carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and nitrogen oxides that your car emits. These chemicals are created as part of the engine’s combustion process and can be very dangerous to humans and the environment. Catalytic converters use a catalyst to initiate a chemical reaction that turns these harmful chemicals into harmless ones. The catalyst is a ceramic structure that is coated with platinum, rhodium, or palladium. As the exhaust gases flow into this structure, the metal reacts with the chemicals, creating the less toxic wastes of carbon dioxide, water, and nitrogen, which are expelled out of the car. diagram of a catalytic converter

Reasons Your Catalytic Converter Can Go Bad

There are a few things that could cause your cat to go bad before it has reached the end of its life span.

  • Bad Sparkplugs: When spark plugs go bad they can cause unburned fuel to enter your vehicle’s exhaust system. If that fuel were to ignite it could cause the cat to suffer a partial or complete meltdown.
  • Physical Damage Caused by Road Debris or Rocks: There is a lot of debris on our roadways that can be kicked up into your exhaust system. Physical damage is rare but it can happen.
  • Engine Coolant or Oil Contamination: Contaminants like silicone or oil can get into the cat and form phosphorous deposit buildup which can shorten the cat’s lifespan.
  • Engine Misfire: Engine misfires are caused when air and raw fuel are pumped into your vehicle’s exhaust through the catalytic converter. This makes the cat overheat.
  • Frequently Taking Short Trips: Frequently driving your vehicle for short trips around town can be bad for your catalytic converter. The cat needs to get hot enough to burn away the hydrocarbons your vehicle produces or clogging occurs, cutting down its lifespan.
If the catalytic converter in your vehicle goes bad, it will trigger the check engine light to turn on. You may notice a smell of sulfur rotten eggs as well. Pay attention to your vehicle’s temperature gauge and if it struggles to maintain acceleration as you are driving around. If your vehicle experiences any of these symptoms, it is crucial that you head to your mechanic as soon as possible to diagnose the issue. They will be able to let you know if there is a clog in the cat or if it needs to be completely replaced.

Trust the Experts at South Ogden Tunex

The best way to protect your catalytic converter is by seeing the experienced team at Tunex South Ogden at the first signs of trouble. We can help diagnose any issues you may have with your vehicle. Call us today at (801) 528-9115 to schedule an appointment and learn more about all of our services to keep your vehicle running.

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