Signs of a Bad Catalytic Converter

It may come as a surprise, but most drivers have never heard of a catalytic converter, let alone what it does. This huge component in your vehicle’s exhaust system is in charge of a very important task – it helps minimize harmful emissions created by your engine. A bad catalytic converter poses major safety risks for the environment, your health, and the overall performance and efficiency of your ride.


Let’s take a step back to understand how the “cat” works. Many chemical reactions occur within the catalytic converter, and its metals act as catalysts for the job. This part is responsible for converting harmful gasses, like carbon monoxide, to safer, breathable gasses. 


Catalytic converters are made to last for a very long time unless a leak develops or someone steals it. Many thieves like to steal this car component because of the precious metals it is made of. Even though the catalytic converter is in a hard-to-reach spot under your vehicle, it hasn’t stopped thieves from targeting this chunky piece of metal. Whether your catalytic converter is clogged, broken, or missing, here are some symptoms that indicate catalytic converter problems:

  • Illuminated Check Engine Light - One of the first signs you will notice when your catalytic converter can longer do its job is a lit check engine light. Since there are many sensors in the emissions system, it can easily detect when something has stopped working. 
  • Difficulty with Car Starts - A plugged catalytic converter will make starting your car a hassle since there is excessive exhaust back pressure. Even if your car successfully starts, it will be prone to stalling. 
  • Poor Fuel Efficiency - Your engine will have to work significantly harder to try to expel these toxic fumes. 
  • Sulfur Smell - A common sign of a failing catalytic converter is the foul smell of rotten eggs. This happens due to lingering fumes that haven’t properly undergone chemical changes. 

Unfortunately, most catalytic converter troubles require a full replacement of this component. And it can be quite expensive, considering the materials it is made of and the labor involved in installing a new one. Fortunately, we provide fair-priced maintenance and repairs at Advanced Auto Care Florida. If you are due for catalytic converter repairs, please call or visit our team today!

Advanced Auto Care Center Florida is committed to ensuring effective communication and digital accessibility to all users. We are continually improving the user experience for everyone, and apply the relevant accessibility standards to achieve these goals. We welcome your feedback. Please call Advanced Auto Care Center Florida - 13th Street (352) 505-0548 if you have any issues in accessing any area of our website.