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how to tell if my catalytic converter is bad

I even have a 2002 Malibu and i’m getting a fault code from the OBD2. The code is P0420. One shop told me that it means i have to change the catalytic converter. Is that often true

8 Responses to “how to tell if my catalytic converter is bad”

  1. ricardo9505 says:

    bad catalytic means u cannot pass smog test
    also a standard culprit confused with this can be oxygen sensors

  2. ken k says:

    no/get the genuine info /thats a mistake/have the emissions checked/its probably something else thats connected to the system/what number miles

  3. goodnused says:

    Take your vehicle to a muffler shop that repairs Catalytic Converters, they poke a hole on your exhaust to study the flow and or back pressure in front and behind the converter. Also there’s a link to the OBD codes attached below.
    ( THE SOLE MORE THING, I WILL BE ABLE TO THINK ABOUT IS: CODE 420 SMOKING TO MUCH DOPE WITHIN THE CAR?) Just Kidding, Good Luck and in the event you can discover a used one somewhere…grab it, might prevent some money.

    P0420 Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 1)

  4. Frankie says:

    If the engine is running^ properly, it’d be very rare for the cat to fail. An exhaust leak can trigger a P0420 code. Check for exhaust leaks on the manifold, pipes, catalytic converter. Repair as required. Check the link for more details.

  5. jeff rager says:

    in case your converter was bad, it might be glowing red, or simply getting really hot, and your exhaust would sound muffled, or stopped up, plus the auto would run like crap. Your car being an 02, it probably wouldn't hurt to modify it out pretty soon, however it won't throw a bother code itself. It's probably an O2 sensor going bad. which, in case your converter is stopped up, will cause the O2 sensor to throw a code. Basically the mechanic isnt far flung the mark, but i’d check the O2 sensor first, because it's the cheaper of the 2.

  6. richard says:

    there are some of easy methods to tell one is specific exhaust and rotten egg smell, your car keeps stalling after its warm,or loss or no power while driving,so in case you have any of those yes that you must change it

  7. molitor says:

    A code P0420 may mean that a number of of the subsequent has happened:

    * Leaded fuel was used where unleaded was called for
    * An oxygen sensor isn’t reading (functioning) properly
    * The engine coolant temperature sensor isn’t working properly
    * Damaged or leaking exhaust manifold / catalytic converter / exhaust pipe
    * Retarded spark timing
    * The oxygen sensors in front and behind the converter are reporting too similar of readings
    Some suggested steps for troubleshooting a P0420 error code include:

    * Check for exhaust leaks on the manifold, pipes, catalytic converter. Repair as required.
    * Use a scope to diagnose the oxygen sensor operation (Tip: The oxygen sensor in front of the catalytic converter normally has a fluctuating waveform. The waveform of the sensor behind the converter will be more steady).
    * Inspect the downstream heated oxygen sensor (HO2), replace if necessary
    * Replace the catalytic converter

    Something to notice is that many auto manufacturers offer an extended warranty on emissions-related parts. So when you’ve got a more recent car however it's out of it's bumper-to-bumper warranty, there still could be warranty in this variety of problem. Many makers give a five year, unlimited mileage warranty on this stuff. It's worth checking into.

  8. Michael says:

    No. P0420 is among the most frustrating OBDII codes (well, besides any evap codes and EGR codes and HO2S codes and misfire codes…) since it seems to indicate at a dear part nevertheless it could be because of such a lot of more cost-effective but much more likely things.

    P0420 code formally means "Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold (Bank 1)" Feels like a catalytic converter problem, no? What it actually comes from is an O2 sensor located past (downstream of) the catalytic converter. The only purpose of that sensor is to be a snitch: it watches the free oxygen level inside the catalytic converter output and if the extent varies an excessive amount of just like the upstream sensor is varying, the eu sets the P0420 code… the converter isn't working right. But unless the converter is ready 15 or more years old it’s probably okay. Exhaust leaks or lazy upstream O2 sensors must be looked at first. At 8 years old you will likely be money ahead to have the upstream O2 sensor replaced anyway. O2 sensors become sluggish with age and you may expect to save lots of as much in fuel costs over the following couple of years because it will cost to exchange the sensor.

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