Cat Stolen this morning

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by PriusOwner2007, May 4, 2021.

  1. PriusOwner2007

    PriusOwner2007 New Member

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    Hello, my cat converter was stolen this morning. I have a 2007 Hybrid. I am in CA. I can't afford an OEM cat let alone an aftermarket right now. My mechanic suggested installing a straight pipe as I do not need to pass smog this year. Obviously an affordable option but I have no clue what I am doing and really need help. Any advice please would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Moses Bruh

    Moses Bruh Member

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    That sucks, CAT theft is rampant and has hit pretty much everyone at random (including me) so you are not alone. Did you check with your insurance for the CAT replacement to see if its covered with deductible? Straight piping will make the prius much louder and emit more pollutants but should be drivable, others on this forum may tell you it could damage the car without the CAT but personally i didnt research on how true that is.
    Unfortunately it is hard to justify spending ~3k (without insurance) to replace an OEM CAT in CA when its almost as expensive as the car itself.
     
  3. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    Putting in a straight pipe is both a violation of California and Federal Law with strict fines or even prison. If your mechanic does it and gets paid to do it, his liability is even greater.

    If you do anything at all, temporarily install a non C.A.R.B. compliant $130 cat from Canada, and sell the car out of state, before the smog check is required.
     
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  4. privilege

    privilege Member

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    I would straight pipe it (the cat portion) and use whatever was left of the stock muffler
     
  5. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    I'd order this one and see if Amazon will deliver to California.

     
    #5 Georgina Rudkus, May 5, 2021
    Last edited: May 5, 2021
  6. yossi

    yossi Junior Member

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    I know there are issues in states like california, but here in the midwest where we don't have smog inspections, I can get a cat on ebay for $99. Does it even make sense to pay $300-$500 to have a cat shield installed?
     
  7. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    Only if you want to deter the inconvenience associated with having the car stolen again, and if you can get the shield for about $150 and install it yourself.

    A few individuals have actually removed their OEM cat and installed cheap replacements. The market for a working used OEM Prius cat is upwards of $1200.

    Personally, I don't need the hassle or the money. I installed the cat shield.
     
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  8. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    They've gone up a bit.......had no idea they were going for this much until I started making the listing Monday. Priced them for a quick sale. Listed them within 5 minutes of each other and the first one (1975) sold before the other two even showed up as a listing. Guess they were priced too low, or perfect depending on how you look at it...and all they wanted was the converter sections. Wanted ALL the pipes cut off.

    Cat Sales.jpg
     
    #8 TMR-JWAP, May 5, 2021
    Last edited: May 5, 2021
  9. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    This model cat has been a pretty good success story for me so far after installing several. I keep three available at all times now. The only weak spot is the clamp that's provided in the kit. The pipe is 2 inch OD and crimped down to 1 3/4" where it slips over the pipe remaining on the resonator (43mm OD). It's a really good, snug fit. Unfortunately, the clamp included in the kits has so far been a 2" clamp every time. O'reilly's Auto Parts has a much higher quality clamp (1.75") that has a heavier "U bolt", nuts and base. Fits perfect and clamps with no leakage. I do typically reuse the stock Toyota flange bolts and springs.
     
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  10. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    1. Sorry for your loss.

    B. Putting a straight pipe on the car for more than a short period of time while you arrange for a more permanent repair is....just wrong.
    It's bad for the car, even if only because the check engine light always stays on.
    It's bad for the environment if you live where temperature inversions frequently occur where tens of millions of people drive cars.........like, say.....California.
    It's bad for the resale value of your car.

    III. Your mechanic MIGHT be trying to do you a solid and he or SHE might even know enough to spoof the O2 sensor input and make the check engine light go out.....but I'm guessing not. Anybody who would suggest this as a long term fix has ethics issues.....and I don't like giving people like that money to do things with my car...."mostly" (see below) which is mostly why I avoid dealer's mechanics as well.
    They dress nicer.
    They charge a lot more.
    But...the end result is more or less the same.

    So....
    e: Putting a straight pipe on the car is OK for a very quick temporary fix, but ultimately you're going to have to go for something a little more permanent.
    No...they're not going to put you in jail....that's laughable, because the people who run your state are too busy emptying OUT the jails....but you could face a fine. It WILL make it a lot harder to trade out your car when you get your financial ship off the rocks and back into blue water.
    More importantly...."not being able to afford" a $500 vehicle repair means that there's probably other stuff going on in your life, which means that the straight pipe fix may be like going to one of those "payday loan" places.

    .....much more expensive in the long run!


    Stern Shot:
    Having a less than ethical mechanic in the PRC might be something of an advantage.
    If I woke up in your shoes, the first thing I would do is pry them off my feet and give them back to you.

    Then?
    I'd get one of the aftermarket cats mentioned above and see if the mechanic will install it for you.
    This is one of those things in life that, while not completely "legal" (in 1 or 2 out of 52 states) will be a little more ethical, and you will be rewarded in the end by having a check engine light that works, and a car that's a little easier to sell.


    Good Luck!
     
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  11. PriusOwner2007

    PriusOwner2007 New Member

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    Thank u for ur reply. Apparently OEM is required for a Toyota Prius in CA. (I agree w everything people say about what CA is and has become) I have contacted several mechanic's and it is $3k for parts and installation. If it were $500 I would have done that. In all honestly I had 2 medical emergencies wipe out my rainy day saving so thats why I am in this situation needing a cheap fix till I have a little more time to save up again.
     
  12. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    Given the need for an adaptive flange, a new flange seal, and a curved exhaust pipe needing to bent, the labor and materials needed in making the straight pipe would easily exceed one of those less than $150 aftermarket cats.
     
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  13. Galane

    Galane Junior Member

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    Check Rock Auto. They supposedly have CA and NY legal aftermarket cats for a heck of a lot lower price than Toyota OEM.
     
  14. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

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    You're welcome.
    That's why I mentioned that using a "straight pipe" might work for a short term emergency repair, because...stuff does happen.

    When people say "straight pipe" it's something of a misnomer.
    The pipe isn't straight per-se, but rather that's the function.
    They make flexible exhaust pipes (probably illegal to sell in you-know-where!)
    The Googles will give you some ideas of how to use them if you decide to go that route, BUT as mentioned above by the time you buy the associated hardware, you could have purchased an aftermarket cat.
    You just can't get them delivered...."you know where...."

    Take some time and explore your options.
    As long as you take some precautions (windows open, put some tape on the o2 sensor wires that are probably dangling under your car, etc....) you can probably continue to drive your car as-is without damaging it any more than it already is......for a little while.
    Just be careful!
    They point the exhaust pipe out of the back of the car for a reason! ;)

    Good Luck!
     
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  15. vadonkey

    vadonkey New Member

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    At those kind of prices, i
    At those prices, it might be profitable for me to cut off my own, and install a cheap aftermarket one= Profit! LOL
     
  16. TMR-JWAP

    TMR-JWAP Senior Member

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    If you don't want to DIY it, come visit me. I'll take care of it for you and you can go visit Myrtle Beach with a new aftermarket exhaust and $1k cash in your hand
     
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  17. Priusjames

    Priusjames Member

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    Those are CARB compliant, sure, but CA law says we must install brand new OEM from Toyota, we *cannot* use any aftermarket parts...CARB compliant or not.

    Once the Prius cat is stolen, gotta sell the car out of state with one of those $150 units that are legal everyplace(?) else.
     
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  18. Priusjames

    Priusjames Member

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    There are CARB compliant parts available online, sure, but CA law says we must install brand new OEM from Toyota...we *cannot* use any aftermarket parts, CARB compliant or not.

    Once the Prius cat is stolen, you pretty much gotta sell the car out of state with one of those $150 units that are legal everyplace(?) else...$3,000 is not a viable expense. I've already made the conscious decision if mine is stolen I will be forced to sell it out-of-state. Ugh.

    I've ordered a cat defender plate, it's all I can think of to mitigate this disaster.

    Sorry for your loss. my_garage_plate.jpeg
     
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  19. 69shovlhed

    69shovlhed Surly tree hugger

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    how often does commiefornia smog test your car?
     
  20. Priusjames

    Priusjames Member

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    Every other year. Visual inspection is a big part of it.
     
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