How To Unclog A Catalytic Converter

Do you want to learn how to unclog a catalytic converter? If yes, then this informative article is written just for you.

There are several methods of unclogging a catalytic converter, you need to use the most effective and easy-to-use method of them. In this informative article, I will explain all the necessary information that you need to know about unclogging a catalytic converter by yourself.

It is very important to express the symptoms of a clogged catalytic converter before you begin the process of unclogging it. That is why you need to know the symptoms of a clogged catalytic converter.

What Are the Symptoms of a Clogged Catalytic Converter?

If you are driving a car with a clogged catalytic converter it can be a pain in the butt. Aside from the environmental pollution issues, you are also risking your car’s engine. But, there are some symptoms that all you need to know is if your car has a clogged catalytic converter.

1. Failed Vehicle Emission Tests

One of the most popular symptoms of clogged catalytic converters is failed vehicle emission tests.

Immediately you begin to observe the check light to take a vehicle emission test because nothing is more indicative of a clogged catalytic converter than this.

The major reason for this is that a functional catalytic converter is a very important part of your car’s emission control system. So if your car fails an emissions test, then you should know that your car has a blocked catalytic converter.

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2. Engine Performance Issues

The engine performance issue is also one of the common problems with a clogged catalytic converter is exhaust backpressure. The exhaust gasses are trapped in the car. Internal combustion engines need an air-fuel mix to start and run effectively. When a catalytic converter is clogged, immediately the trapped gasses will begin to affect the amount of air and fuel in the engine.

That is why you begin to have difficulty when starting it, which may eventually start but suddenly the engine stops after sputtering for a bit.

3. Fuel Efficiency Issues

Those cars with a clogged catalytic converter will become less fuel-efficient because the trapped exhaust gasses within the engine have reduced the air and oxygen that gets into the engine.

When this occurs, your car engine starts to struggle to accelerate even when you have your foot on the gas pedal. Due to this, your car engine works harder and consumes more fuel.

4. Your Dashboard Lights Come On

Whenever your car dashboard light is on, then you should know that you are having an unclog catalytic converter issue.

It is among the most prominent signs of a blocked catalytic converter. Clogged catalytic converters may trigger your car sensors that are designed to deal with any emission issues.

How to Unclog a Catalytic Converter

Now you know the common and popular symptoms of a clogged catalytic converter. Next is how to quickly fix the catalytic converter.

Currently, there are two methods of unclogging your catalytic converter.

The catalytic converter mustn’t be clogged beyond repair. Likewise, it must not be broken. If your catalytic converter is not in any of these conditions, then you might need to consult a mechanic because applying a DIY approach might be futile. Immediately you have cleared that you can opt for any of two methods of unclogging your catalytic converter.

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1. Unclogging the Catalytic Converter by Removing It

To make use of this method to unclog the catalytic converter you need to follow the simple and easy-to-understand instructions below.

These are the tools you will need:

  • Some automotive degreaser
  • A large container
  • Some penetrating oil
  • A Floor jack
  • Jack stands
  • An impact wrench
  • A pressure washer

Now you go about this method:

  1. Make sure that the exhaust system cools down to avoid getting burnt.
  2. Now you need to jack up the car and keep it suspended with jack stands
  3. Immediately take out the oxygen sensor(s) Now apply penetrating oil to loosen the bolts.
  4. Then, you need to inspect the catalytic converter after removing it. If you can hear a loud rattle, then you need to stop because the components of the catalytic converter are most likely in pieces. But if you can’t hear anything, then you just need to continue with the process.
  5. Make sure you use the pressure washer to wash the catalytic converter at low pressure.
  6. Immerse the catalytic converter in hot water and degreaser.
  7. Rinse the catalytic converter with the pressure washer at low pressure.
  8. Then, reinstall the catalytic converter after it has been allowed to drain and dry.
  9. Now reinstall the oxygen sensor(s) after the catalytic converter is back in its place.

2. Unclogging the Catalytic Converter without Removing It

You only need to make use of this method to unclog your Catalytic converter if it is not seriously clogged. You will need a catalytic converter cleaner.

This method allows you to clean your exhaust, fuel systems, and your oxygen sensors.

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Follow the instruction below to unclog your catalytic converter without removing it.

  1. You need to get a catalytic converter that works well with your car.
  2. Now make sure that you have 15 liters of fuel in your tank
  3. You have to pour the catalytic converter cleaner into the fuel tank.
  4. Then, you need to drive your car at 2500rpm(at least) for about 30 minutes. The major purpose is to drive for long enough for the catalytic converter/fuel mixture to go around the car and clean the system. You need to ensure that the car does not overheat while on this drive.
  5. You need to re-calibrate the OBD code immediately after which your re-read the catalytic converter

If you noticed that the car accelerated quickly after the ride and there is less black smoke from the exhaust, then you might have unclogged the catalytic converter.

This is one of the fastest and cheapest methods of fixing your fixed catalytic converter.

If there is a complication in the process of unclogging your catalytic converter without removing it then you should consult your mechanic as soon as possible so that it won’t become a severe issue.