The catalytic converter is rarely the reason for a visit to a car repair shop. But when it does, you have to pay a lot of money for repairs. After all, the exhaust gas converter is one of the most expensive car parts. Even if it is not working, the part is valued on the secondary market. And you can always sell your outdated catalytic converter through autocatalystmarket.com/us/en/buyers.

Each catalytic converter has its own service life. On average, it is 100-150 thousand miles. But it is rare that the cause of failure is the physical wear and tear of the assembly. Most often, the part fails prematurely. And in order to prolong the life of the converter, you should know what factors negatively affect the performance of the exhaust converter.

Why the catalytic converter fails prematurely

There are many causes of premature catalytic converter failure. The main ones are the following:

  • mechanical damage;
  • malfunction of the ignition system;
  • use of poor-quality fuel;
  • frequent driving on bumpy roads;
  • aggressive driving style.

Let’s examine some of these factors.

Mechanical damage

In most cars, the inner block of the catalytic converter is made of ceramic. The part itself consists of a large number of longitudinal channels and has a fragile structure. Therefore, the converter is sensitive to frequent vibrations and, especially, to shocks.

For example, a stone impact on the catalyst body or a run-on on a curb can damage the part. If cracks or chips appear in the converter due to mechanical damage, the converter is rendered completely unusable and cannot be restored.

The catalytic converter will have to be replaced immediately, as the operation of the car in such conditions is dangerous for other assemblies of the car. For example, fragments of the ceramic block of the catalytic converter may get into the engine and damage its components.

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Incorrect operation of the ignition system

The catalytic converter is located in close proximity to the engine. In some models the assembly is located after the intake pipe, and in others right after the exhaust manifold. Therefore, incorrect operation of the engine or ignition system directly affects the durability of the catalytic converter.

The surface of the ceramic honeycomb is sprayed with precious metals such as:

  • platinum;
  • rhodium;
  • palladium.

Although the converter’s operating temperature is in the 300-850°C range, unburned fuel can heat the catalytic converter to more extreme temperatures. This leads to melting of the catalytic layer, which instantly leads to part failure.

Detonation of fuel in the exhaust system is also dangerous. This leads not only to the melting of the precious metal coating, but also to the mechanical damage of the ceramic honeycomb.

Use of poor-quality fuel

The lower the fuel quality, the more soot is emitted during combustion. All these elements accumulate on the walls of the catalytic converter over time. It is especially dangerous if oil enters the system. It is also not recommended to use fuel additives frequently.

The use of leaded gasoline severely damages the catalytic converter. Zinc, which is in its composition, covers the catalytic layer and the part ceases to perform its functions.

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