Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft? All Explained

Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft All Explained

Does car insurance cover catalytic converter theft? If you have comprehensive insurance, then yes, catalytic converter theft is covered by auto insurance.

Why do people steal catalytic converters? How can I tell if my catalytic converter has been stolen? Continue reading for details.

What is a Catalytic Converter?

A catalytic converter is a part of your car that minimizes hazardous emissions. Since 1975, it has been a requirement for all gas-powered vehicles. It comprises a metal-coated ceramic honeycomb (usually platinum, rhodium, and palladium) that permits harmful compounds in the automotive exhaust to recombine and transform into safer gases.

Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft?

Catalytic converter theft is covered under your comprehensive coverage. Drivers who have their catalytic converter stolen can file a comprehensive claim and it will likely be covered, though you should check the details of your policy to verify what is and is not covered.

Your comprehensive deductible will apply to the claim, so if you have a $1,000 deductible and it costs $1,500 to replace the catalytic converter, the insurance company will write you a check for $500 and you will be expected to pay the rest out of pocket. Drivers who don’t have comprehensive insurance won’t be covered for any kind of car theft and will have to pay out of pocket to get a replacement.

Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft All Explained
Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft? All Explained

Why Do People Steal Catalytic Converters?

Catalytic converters are increasingly a target for thieves due to:

  • The current market value of a catalytic converter’s precious metals
  • The ease of removing a catalytic converter for an experienced thief
  • The inability to track catalytic converters

In the current market, catalytic converters can be resold to recyclers for as little as $50 or to precious metal dealers for as much as thousands of dollars per ounce, reported the National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB).

Thieves have an increasingly alluring opportunity to make quick money because modern catalytic converter models contain even more precious metals than older models.

According to Edmunds, skilled thieves can take out a catalytic converter quickly, especially if they have access to modern power tools. A catalytic converter also lacks tracking mechanisms.

How Can I Tell If My Catalytic Converter Has Been Stolen?

Even though it may not be obvious from the outside of your car, you will be able to tell as soon as you turn the key in the ignition that your catalytic converter has been stolen. When the catalytic converter has been removed, your vehicle will make a loud roaring sound that’ll get louder as you push the gas pedal.

Your car might also make a sputtering sound as you change speed, or you’ll notice it’s not driving smoothly.

A stolen catalytic converter can be identified by an increase in exhaust or by the smell of exhaust.

In summary, here are the key symptoms that your catalytic converter has been removed:

  • Loud roar when you start the car, louder as you accelerate
  • Increase in exhaust fumes, or unusual exhaust smells
  • Missing parts under vehicle leading to muffler
  • Uneven or sputtering acceleration due to lack of exhaust regulation
  • Check engine lightor inspection failure

You may want to know Does Car Insurance Cover Stolen Cars?

Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft All Explained
Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft? All Explained

What to Do If Your Catalytic Converter is Stolen

If you discover that your catalytic converter has been stolen, there are several steps to take to make sure it gets replaced properly, including:

Contact the police: In order to have the proper documentation to submit a claim against your comprehensive insurance, you must file an official report.

Get a quote for repairs: Get a price estimate for replacing your catalytic converter by getting in touch with your mechanic. There might be additional theft-related damages that need to be accounted for in your quote, depending on how the catalytic converter was taken from your car.

File a claim with your insurance: You can submit a comprehensive insurance claim to your insurance provider to get the damage covered if you have this type of coverage. If you don’t have comprehensive insurance, you’ll need to pay for the repair out-of-pocket. Tips for How to File a Third-party Car Insurance Claim?

What If Your Catalytic Converter Theft Insurance Claim is Denied?

There are several grounds for rejecting a car insurance claim. When an insurance claim is rejected, your provider will typically send you a letter outlining the reasons why. If you don’t agree with your insurer providers decision you have several options available.

  • Collect evidence. This can include police reports, any eyewitness accounts, pictures, or other supporting evidence. Send photocopies of your documents, not the originals, along with your resubmitted claim.
  • Create an appeal letter in which you explain why you disagree with the choice made by your insurance provider. Give as much information as you can, citing your insurance policy as necessary.
  • Contact your state’s insurance commissioner. Most states have a special unit to handle problems like unfairly denied insurance claims or a mediation program that will assist policyholders in settling a dispute with their insurance company.
Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft All Explained
Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft? All Explained

How to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft?

Consider these tips to help protect your car from catalytic converter theft:

  1. Know if your car is a likely target: hybrids, SUVs and trucks have valuable or easily removable catalytic converters. If you etch your license plate number or vehicle identification number (VIN) onto your catalytic converter, it may be possible to notify a scrap yard that it was stolen and facilitate the owner identification process.
  2. Use a closed garage, regularly move your car’s spot, or park in well-lit areas close to public entrances.
  3. Install an anti-theft device
  4. Install motion-sensitive lights and cameras in your parking area
  5. Paint your catalytic converter to deter buyers – some local police departments even offer free programs for painting

The first step in preventing catalytic converter theft is realizing when your car might be a target. You can prevent thieves from targeting your car by taking these preventative steps. Check for How Does Car Insurance Work?

Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft All Explained
Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft? All Explained


How Do Catalytic Converters Get Stolen?

It can be taken out in as little as one minute by thieves, who frequently use a saw or wrench. So what can you do to stop catalytic converters from being stolen? Read on to find out more about what thieves might be after and how to keep your car safe.

Where is Your Catalytic Converter Located?

Your vehicle’s catalytic converter is located underneath. The majority of cars typically have it between the engine and the muffler.

How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Stolen Catalytic Converter?

According to the NICB, the typical cost to replace a catalytic converter is between $1,500 and $3,000. The labor will run you another $600-$1000 on top of the replacement part’s approximate $1500 cost.

Is It Illegal to Drive Without a Catalytic Converter?

Even in states that do not enforce emissions standards, removing the catalytic converter from your car is illegal. Self-removal of the converter is a serious infraction. You may be subject to a hefty fine from the government if you do this. You should make an insurance claim to have the exhaust system fixed if your catalytic converter was stolen.

Can the Insurance Company Total My Vehicle?

Yes, an insurance company may decide to total (or write-off) your car in some circumstances where the cost of repairs exceeds the value of the vehicle. Your insurance company might decide not to fix your car if it has multiple catalytic converter replacements or if it is an older model and instead give you the car’s market value. The prevention of catalytic converter theft is crucial, so people should take all reasonable steps to do so.

Summary: Does Car Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft?

Does car insurance cover catalytic converter theft? Catalytic converter theft is frequently covered if you have comprehensive coverage on your auto insurance policy. The replacement of the stolen catalytic converter and any resulting damage will typically be covered by comprehensive insurance.

If you have any questions, please leave a comment. KV Auto tries to give you the best car industry information. Thank you for reading.

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