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Catalytic Converter Replacement

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by bluejayrover, Sep 8, 2007.

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  1. bluejayrover

    bluejayrover New Member

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    :huh: '01 Prius. Well maintained. 132,000 on the clock. Check engine light came on and dealer said it was for the catalytic converter needing to be replaced for $2,100.00 !! Midas said $1,800.00. Is there a cheaper option even if the car is a little "less green"? I know it will pass the smog check even with a straight pipe! Has anyone put on a universal replacement??

    Thanks!

    Jay
  2. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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  3. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Active Member

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    It may not be the converter that needs replacing. Your generation Prius had a HC (hydrocarbon) adsorber with a valve that gets corroded. However, if the valve can't be freed-up you will need to replace the entire assembly.

    Wayne
  4. galaxee

    galaxee mostly benevolent

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    the pipe is about $1500, maybe $1800. but if you get charged more than an hour and a half labor to install, you're getting screwed.
  5. jk450

    jk450 New Member

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    Let's take a step back, and see if we can supply this person with more accurate information...

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hill @ Sep 8 2007, 05:16 PM) [snapback]509188[/snapback]</div>

    Not really. See below.

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hill @ Sep 8 2007, 05:16 PM) [snapback]509188[/snapback]</div>

    True, but that's a federal warranty. It applies regardless of state. California's is 7/70. The car has 132K.

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hill @ Sep 8 2007, 05:16 PM) [snapback]509188[/snapback]</div>

    No. Not for this vehicle. The AT-PZEV 15 year/150K warranty applies to AT-PZEV vehicles only. The Gen II Prius is one of them. A 2001 Prius is not.

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hill @ Sep 8 2007, 05:16 PM) [snapback]509188[/snapback]</div>

    I'll guess that "modular sensors" refers to the A/F sensor in front of the cat and/or the 02 sensor behind it. It's true that a cat or sensor failure is often misdiagnosed, especially if it has a P0420 code.

    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(hill @ Sep 8 2007, 05:16 PM) [snapback]509188[/snapback]</div>

    No. More like $150 to $250, depending on location, if you want the original Denso sensors (and you do). Let's not advocate throwing parts at a car. I'll vote for diagnosis instead.

    If the original poster can supply codes, that may be helpful.
  6. tochatihu

    tochatihu Senior Member

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    Early on, sticky HCAC valves were somewhat common in classic Prius (At least in winter road salt areas). Indeed the only exhaust system TSBs relate to this. A very appropriate early step would be to verify function of the HCAC valve.

    [attachmentid=11296]

    [attachmentid=11297]

    Under the above TSBs, paid coverage would be limited to 80k miles per federal, or by negotiation with Toyota.

    Generic DTCs related to the O2 sensors would be in the P0130 to P0141 range, approximately.

    Jay, I would dissuade you from even considering a straight pipe exhaust modification. Prius engine gets some critical operational info from the exhaust system sensors. Probably you were just kidding :)

    Attached Files:

  7. gippah

    gippah New Member

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    I'm having a similar problem on my 2001 Prius. The engine light came on, so I took it in and they said it was the catalytic converter and said it would cost me $1700 + two gaskets + 2.5 hours of labor to total $2186.

    The diagnostic code they gave was the typical P0420.

    However, I question that the Toyota techs actually did anything except hook it up to the computer and get the code. They did not mention anything about checking any of the O2 sensors or checking anything.

    If it turns out it is the catalytic converter, what would the disadvantage be to buying a $100 generic one and sticking it on the car? $2100 is a bit of an obnoxious price.
  8. joetho

    joetho Junior Member

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    Hello,

    My '02 Prius has the 420 (my, that sounds suspicious!). 280k miles, and the old girl DOES burn a little oil, so I am thinking the catconv may in fact have a little congestion.

    Some things I have tried, or plan to:

    -crawling underneath and checking the hcac valve. That one was kind of grey-area- I didn't know what to check for other than absolute frozen status. I was reluctant to force the thing back and forth, so I just jiggled it and it seemed free.

    -New spark plugs. That actually helped for a while, believe it or not. I am guessing that the improved combustion raised overall efficiency juuuuust enough to meet the onboard computer's standards? It didn't last, and the CE light came back on after a while. But that indicated proper operation of the hcac valve and the fore and aft sensors, right?

    -sensors. The good ones are not super cheap, and they come with the front-pipe assembly if I end up buying one of those expensive bastards after all. I am not one to throw parts at a problem, unless they are cheap ones. These sensors are not real easy to swap out, either. Am I thinking straight here?

    -reading and clearing that CE light every now and then, just to make sure the catconv is the only issue. Things wear out after a quarter million miles!
  9. Garik

    Garik New Member

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    I have a 2004 Prius and P0420 coming up from time to time. I'm not sure if it's o2 sensor or catalytic converter. I live in New York state and I'm wondering if it might be covered by 150,000 mile warranty. Can anyone explain? I found this:
    " Coverage in California Emission Warranty States is up to 10-Years / 150,000-Miles. States include: California, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania and Vermont."
  10. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    NY is a CARB emissions state, so yes, assuming your car was bought, registered and operated in NY, you'd have the same emissions warranties as CA.

    You should notice that in your warranty booklet manual, the cat is covered for 15 years/150K miles in CARB states.
  11. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    This would be true if NY had adopted CA emissions standards prior to the original sale of Garik's car in 2004. I suggest that he check the maintenance and warranty booklet to determine exactly what warranty coverage is applicable.
  12. DetPrius

    DetPrius Active Member

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    Cwerdna states it has to be bought, registered, and operated in NY, which is a CARB state. What is the definition of "operated". I ask because I have an Odyssey that appears to need a cat (0420 code) and it was bought, originally registered in CA, and operated in CA for the first 1.5 years, and then we moved to MI, where it has been operated since then. I have 82k miles and am wondering if it would be covered by the longer CARB warranty. Does it come down to what state the repair is done in as far as the operated question?
  13. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    The longer CARB warranty applies only to vehicles certified as AT-PZEV, which must be hybrid, compressed natural gas, or methanol fuel cell. 2G and 3G Prius are examples of vehicles that qualify. (Classic does not qualify as 2004 was the first model year when Prius was certified to be AT-PZEV compliant.)

    The Honda Odyssey is not a hybrid and does not fit the AT-PZEV category. Consult the maintenance and warranty manual to determine its warranty coverage.

    The following links define the various PZEV categories:
    http://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/zevprog/factsheets/overview.pdf
    http://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/zevprog/factsheets/driveclean.pdf
    1 person likes this.
  14. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Sorry. Good point! I don't know when NY adopted CARB emissions. The warranty booklet from an 04 Prius and its inclusion (or not) of NY relating to California emissions warranties would be a good indicator.
  15. Garik

    Garik New Member

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    Well, actually I bought it in 2007, it had 25,000 miles on it. I don't know if the change of ownership changes anything or when New York adopted those emission regulations. I will check it tomorrow with my dealership and see what they say. Thanks!
  16. Garik

    Garik New Member

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    At the dealership I was told it only covers 2008 and newer cars.
  17. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Do you have the 2004 warranty information booklet? If not, can someone w/an 04 chime in?

    My 06's WIB on page 6 does have a remark under the California emission control warranty that points to "Also applies to Connecticut... New York... vehicles equipped with a California Certified Emission Control System...."

    On page 25, in the California Emission Control Warranty section, there's a box that says


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