Joining the stolen Catalytic Converter Club YAY

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by golfmk681, Feb 21, 2021.

  1. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    My post is more to vent and share, not really knowing what to do with the car. Many of you have experience, and I thought about getting the cat shield but its now too late.

    Well I was working out in my garage, and low and behold, family was using my 06 Prius and the dread sound broke through my workout mode. I knew the moment I heard that dreaded noise my heart sank. My awesome and beloved Prius that acts as my other car, and also is used by my retired parents on occasion with 312k miles, had been violated. I really feel as though the car is was stolen given how its near useless without a cat unless I want to sound like a big rig.

    The worst part is this car how so much life left, I was thinking it would hit 500k. The engine is strong, transmission was replaced around 245k. New struts/shocks. Battery pack was replaced with a 2016 Prius with 16k miles at the time (62k miles on the battery now).

    I really IMHO while I can fix this with the OEM cat, I can't risk getting my cat getting stolen again which is a possibility given I have to park outside (my other car is parked inside). Even with a cat shield its not a guarantee. And I believe this year my registration in September needs a smog check. I understand even if I install a third party cat, the CEL will trigger sooooo. Really unsure.

    I might part the car out especially the battery... I do want a second car so perhaps an old civic or an old Kia Soul are affordable second car options.
     

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  2. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Your situation is exactly what the governor and your state representatives need to hear about. And they need to hear it often! Too many clean burning older Prius are being lost for good due to these thefts and the state's unhelpful smog requirements need to be updated to handle this situation.

    It sounds like you have a great car and parting a car out is a messy nightmare unless you're already in that line of work and are well equipped to move parts quickly.

    If I were you I'd find a friend out of state to have a $120 aftermarket cat shipped to and then buy a new O2 sensor and put that on for the next 7 months and then re-evaluate the situation in September. With the amount of Cat thefts going on in California and both the expense and challenge of OEM replacement, the state might finally come up with a way to mitigate the amount of older low-pollution vehicles that are permanently taken out of service for these felony crimes.

    In the meantime call your legislature and demand they help you and all the other crime victims rather then looking the other way as Toyota stealerships rob everyone a second time just to get their car back on the road.
     
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  3. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Third party cat will not defacto trigger a code.
     
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  4. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    What do you mean? Do you think I can clear the code and it will be clear for a few days?
     
  5. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    A well-made and properly installed third party cat will not trigger the light.

    However, this is not really the problem.

    The problem is that when that California smog check is performed, the test station will jack up the car to do a visual inspection to make certain that nobody has installed a third party cat on the car, because the letter of the law says it has to be a genuine Toyota replacement part.
     
  6. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    you know that one smog i've gone to since owning the car, they just plug in the car with the scanner. They've never done a visual. But Its possible I can get assigned to a smog check only place where they are through.

    The other problem is I can't get "well made cat" to California since all sales of 3rd party cats are banned for California. I honestly don't know anyone outside of California, and it would be weird to ask a cousin I haven't talk to to all of a sudden ask them if I can get something shipped to them. lol.

    I'm going to sell my car out of state or part if out once i get my car on the road again.
     
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  7. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

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    Yeah, never know if the tester got busted by the state last month and felt the heat, or if they're just quizzing the cars' computers and calling it good so they can get a few more charges through per day.

    Even if you get the 3rd party cat there, it can be a challenge to get it installed. All California car-repair facilities are theoretically barred from doing it. A welding shop would have the tools, and wouldn't have that liability since they aren't in the car-repair business.
     
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  8. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Maybe take a couple vacations to Las Vegas? :) First vacation you find a place to ship your order to and second vacation you get it installed? :)
     
  9. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    yah this craiglist guy will do it lol but yah i don't know the quality (probably poor). Just need to get the car going again so i can sell it
     
  10. Just Peg

    Just Peg New Member

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    Regarding calling your state representatives and Governor:

    I heard one good suggestion from a blogger: Tell your state representatives that Toyota needs to issue a recall for these cars. Toyota could easily install a tilt alarm. I hear that it can be hooked up to the car's door alarm. So the car will start honking anytime the car gets tilted after you park it. The thieves only need to jack it up 4 inches to get their saws under the car. A good tilt sensor will detect that.
    Toyota is making a fortune off of replacing stolen catalytic converters with brand new ones. They will not install these tilt alarms because it will interfere with this new boom in income. It will take government action to force them to install this feature through recalls, and on new cars.
     
    #10 Just Peg, Feb 27, 2021
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 1, 2021
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  11. Socal_Prius

    Socal_Prius Junior Member

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    Update?
     
  12. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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  13. Socal_Prius

    Socal_Prius Junior Member

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    Did you end up just going with an aftermarket unit until the next smog? Which did you use? Where did you get it installed?
     
  14. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    Ya after market. Some random guy on Facebook marketplace. All of them charge 420 installed though there’s variation in how much they sell just the aftermarket cat (250-320) . The guy came to my house and installed it. Easy $420 for him. It took him 30 mins to install. The guy is gonna install a shield on my sister Prius v.

    Not gonna lie I drive my car 3x a week. Each time I start it in the morning I dread hearing the noise when they steal you cat.
     
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  15. ETC(SS)

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

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    Glad it worked out for you!
    Let us know how the 'smog check' goes in Sept.....
     
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  16. golfmk681

    golfmk681 Member

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    I will. I’d love to keep the car another 2 years. My wallet will love it.
     
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  17. Isaac Zachary

    Isaac Zachary Active Member

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    That's not true. The law in California says it has to be a CARB compliant catalytic converter on all 2001 and newer vehicles, whether it's OEM or aftermarket. The problem is that nobody makes a CARB compliant aftermarket catalytic converter because it would likely be just as expensive, if not more, than an OEM cat.

    The dealers might be making a fortune, but I'm not so sure Toyota is. Thieves look for Toyota catalytic converters because they have at least $1,000 worth of expensive metals in them, Seems like somewhere I saw it was closer to $1,200. Non-CARB compliant catalytic converters have a mear fraction of that amount of precious metals which is why they are so cheap. Add all that expensive metal plus manufacturing costs plus shipping costs and it could cost some $1,500 or more for Toyota to make these and still not make any profit. How much Toyota sells these to the dealers is unknown to me. But seeing how some dealers sell them for as little as $1,500 would seem like Toyota isn't charging any more than that.

    Meanwhile other dealers sell them for over $2,000... obviously a $500 mark up. Add to that $500 mark up their labor costs and now you see the dealers are the ones making all the money. At least the ones that charge those kinds of prices.
     
  18. Sanchan

    Sanchan Junior Member

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    Revenge of Prius! Cat thief got killed by Prius in Anaheim, CA
     
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  19. douglasjre

    douglasjre Active Member

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    No cat thefts here in Florida that I know of. Why does it seem like all the cat thefts occur in California and Oregon
     
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  20. 2GenPrius

    2GenPrius Member

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    Karma police, if not the real police are out to get 'em.

    Here in So Cal Anaheim (not too far off from Disneyland), some thief got crushed when his jack failed and the Prius piled on him.

    Santa Clarita and San Bernardino, these POS are being popped for running rings of thefts. As much as I deplore the loss of life (most especially a wasted one), I hate hearing all the suffering people have been going through with COVID and not having $$ to pay housing/bills, only to get screwed when these opportunists kick us while we're down.

    Wishing I engraved my license plate on my cat because that would have been a sweet recovery. And let's face it, if there's $ to be made in it, the government will go after them. Just look at the bust pics and piles of cash. More for their coffers/war chest.
     
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