You may have heard of a catalytic converter but maybe you’re not really sure what it does. This auto part is found in every single vehicle and is responsible for reducing harmful emissions that result from hazardous exhaust fumes. At Auto Specialty of Lafayette, Inc., we have years of experience repairing and replacing catalytic converters. Learn more about this essential component, including how it works and its benefits.

The Importance of Catalytic Converters

What Is a Catalytic Converter?

A catalytic converter is part of a vehicle’s exhaust system. Catalytic refers to a chemical reaction, and a converter involves the process of changing a substance into a different form. Its primary job is to use chemical reactions to convert hazardous pollutants into less harmful substances. As a secondary benefit, catalytic converters play a part in improving a car’s overall efficiency and performance.

How Does It Work?

Two chemical reactions take place as exhaust fumes pass through a catalytic converter:

  • Nitrogen oxide is separated into nitrogen and oxygen molecules. The nitrogen remains in the converter, while the oxygen passes through the exhaust system.
  • Hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide are burned off, essentially reducing the outflow of these contaminating substances.

Why Do Vehicles Need Catalytic Converters?

Gases, such as carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, and nitrogen oxide, are hazardous to people and the environment. These substances are known to play a role in respiratory illnesses, harmful air quality, and pollution. In the 1970s, the Environmental Protection Agency enhanced emission control regulations. This resulted in catalytic converters becoming a required component of all vehicles from 1975 forward.

Being without a catalytic converter is not safe or legal. Without this essential auto part, your vehicle will not work as well, which can lead to costly repairs, including engine failure. As for reducing noxious emissions, catalytic converters reduce 90% of all harmful fumes by turning them into less harmful gases. 

Auto Repair You Can Trust

Regular vehicle maintenance can extend the life of your vehicle and its catalytic converter. Contact Auto Specialty today at (765) 477-7300 to schedule an appointment for catalytic converter repair, brake service, diesel engine repair, oil changes, and wheel alignments. We proudly serve customers in Crawfordsville, IN, and the entire Lafayette community.

Source: “What is a Catalytic Converter, and How Does it Work?” Blog article. Synchrony. Synchrony Bank, 26 Oct. 2022. Web. 29 Mar. 2023.

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