Germania Today | Summer 2022

F or most car owners in America, unexpected car repairs are typically an unwelcome surprise in your budget. Which is why a recent rise in catalytic converter theft has made car-owning Americans even more fearsome over what odd noises come from under their hood may mean for them. Found underneath your car and attached with bolts to your exhaust pipe is your catalytic converter. Comprised of precious metals like platinum, palladium, and rhodium, your catalytic converter works as an emission control device by helping bring down the emissions from harmful compounds that are often produced by your car exhaust. You may be wondering, if these car parts are such a benefit to the environment, why are catalytic converters a target for theft? There are a few reasons why: • They are easy to access. Easily located underneath your vehicle, unprotected by an alarm system, they require little to no skill to detach. Stealing them takes little effort. • They are easy to sell. The highly valued metals such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium, along with

protection is by keeping your vehicle in a garage or well-lit area. Should you discover that your catalytic converter has been stolen, report the theft to the police. Beyond catching the thief, having a police report may be an important step when filing an insurance claim. Contact your auto insurance company as soon as possible after you’ve discovered the missing part. Depending on your auto insurance coverage, your company may be able to help you cover the cost of replacing the stolen car part. Although your vehicle can technically operate without a catalytic converter, it is quite illegal to drive without one in Texas and the fines for doing so can be hefty. Talk with your mechanic.

significant disruption in the supply chain, caused their price to skyrocket and make catalytic converters a commodity. • The crime is untraceable. With no identification numbers attached to these car parts, there are essentially no ways to track or identify them once a thief sells them to a junkyard or on a black market. How can you help prevent catalytic converter theft? You can now purchase many useful anti-theft devices to prevent catalytic converter theft. Devices may include indestructible wires, catalytic converter plates to prevent access, or motion sensor alarms that sound when vibration or tampering is detected. Some communities have held drive throughs collaborating with local automotive shops to have VIN numbers etched on the car parts. This causes thieves to hesitate because the converter can now be traced. One of the safest ways to ensuring catalytic converter

Stay prepared and look at your current insurance coverage and ensure you have comprehensive coverage. Standard liability and collision coverage does not cover such losses as theft. If you are uncertain to what your auto policy covers, make sure to reach out to your insurance agent for specific details. Although thieves are getting smarter, you can always stay one step ahead by arming yourself with knowledge and making sure you have the right car insurance coverage. Find out more about catalytic

converter theft and other topics at

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