Merityre Specialists sell and fit a comprehensive range of catalytic converters for all makes and models of car.
What does a Catalytic Converter do?
The catalytic converter is a flow through, emissions control device. It reduces harmful emissions of hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides from the car into the atmosphere. It does this by converting the gases into water vapour and less harmful gases.
All modern car exhausts include a catalytic converter. This has been the law since 1993 for petrol cars and 2001 for diesel cars. Catalytic converters were made compulsory because they are incredibly efficient in reducing harmful emissions. The difference in emission readings for cars with converters and those without are huge and therefore economical environmental responsibility has drastically improved as a result of these laws.
Components of a Catalytic Converter
- Exhaust gases enter the catalytic converter straight from the engine.
- The gases pass through the monolith which is a honeycomb design coated in precious metals. These materials enable the conversion of the gases that pass through it.
- Interim matting holds the monolith in place. The matting expands when exposed to heat which means the monolith is kept secure when it is working. The chemical reactions within the monolith take place at around 300°C.
- Less harmful gases leave the catalytic converter through the exhaust tail pipe.
Catalytic converters are designed to offer a long and thorough service to vehicle owners. However, they still need to be checked periodically for internal and external damage and to ensure they are working efficiently. Below are examples of faults and damage that are common in catalytic converters:
- Unburned fuel or contaminants from the engine can cause the temperature win a catalytic converter to rise out of control.
- Using the wrong oil in your vehicle may also damage the catalytic converter. Heavier viscosity oil produces more vapours than lighter oil. Partially-burned contaminants that enter and pass into the catalytic converter greatly raise the converter temperature too.
- A bad oxygen sensor, a dirty mass air flow sensor or an engine misfire will allow unburned fuel to pass into the exhaust which can cause temperature problems and damage.
Excessive heat will melt the honeycomb support causing the system to fail. A broken honeycomb may cause a rattle and will eventually block the exhaust flow. This results in the exhaust being restricted resulting in a loss of power, increased fuel consumption, engine overheating and usually a check engine light.
- Too many short trips at low speeds can also damage catalytic converters. The catalytic converter requires use from continuous high speed driving to reach operating temperature. This is how the system cleans and regenerates. Infrequent driving or not driving far enough may mean the converter will fail. Vehicles that get only intermittent use commonly have this problem.
If you believe you may have problems with your catalytic converter, have it checked by one of our experts at your local Merityre Specialists branch. All of our MOT testing stations can carry out catalytic converter tests.
Here at Merityre Specialists, we aim to keep your car o-zone friendly by checking your catalytic converter and offering a replacement if it is not working efficiently. All of our new catalytic converters come with fitting kits and a two-year warranty.