Theft of catalytic converters is now a major worry for automobile owners all across the globe. These devices contain very valuable metals including palladium, rhodium, and platinum, which can fetch high prices on the black market and boost theft. Thefts of catalytic converters rose by 425% in the United States alone between 2019 and 2020, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau. You might be wondering how this crime affects your insurance coverage if you own a car with a catalytic converter. This post will examine catalytic converter theft in more detail and explain everything you need to know about your car and your insurance coverage.
What is a Catalytic Converter?
Let’s first examine what a catalytic converter is and why it is so valuable before discussing insurance coverage. A catalytic converter is a component of an automobile’s exhaust system. Its main job is to change dangerous pollutants like carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides from exhaust gases into less dangerous ones like carbon dioxide and water vapor. This is accomplished via a chemical reaction occurring on a surface covered in precious metals like palladium, rhodium, and platinum. This brings down pollution and is overall a great thing for the environment. Cars are no longer allowed to be used without catalytic converters.
Why is Catalytic Converter Theft on the Rise?
Rhodium and palladium prices have skyrocketed in recent years, elevating the value of the precious metals used in catalytic converters. With the availability of the materials declining and the need for them increasing, it creates a higher price and adds value to these rare materials making them irresistible to thieves. Since thieves may readily sell stolen converters for hundreds or even thousands of dollars, this has increased the amount of thefts in recent years. The problem is exacerbated by how simple it is to steal catalytic converters, which can be taken off of a car in a matter of minutes with only a few basic tools.
What are the Consequences of Catalytic Converter Theft?
Catalytic converter theft can have serious repercussions for car owners. They may have to pay for additional repairs if the thieves harm other components of the car while stealing it in addition to having to replace the stolen catalytic converter. As a result of the increase in demand, converters are frequently on backorder and in short supply making stolen catalytic converters can be challenging to replace. If you need yours replaced after a theft, not only will your pocket take a hit but also your time. You make be without transport for weeks while your car waits in the garage for stock to arrive.
How Does Catalytic Converter Theft Affect Your Insurance?
Your comprehensive insurance will normally pay for the cost of replacing your stolen car or fixing any damage it sustains if it is stolen. However, the extent of your policy’s specific provisions will apply if just the catalytic converter is taken. Comprehensive insurance typically covers the theft of a catalytic converter, but it is necessary to verify your coverage to be sure. Insurance policies are vastly different from company to company so It’s crucial to evaluate your policy to understand your coverage limits. Some policies may even have a cap on the amount of coverage granted for part theft so always read the fine print.
Does my insurance cover catalytic converter theft?
Depending on your coverage, your insurance policy might pay to replace a stolen catalytic converter. Theft is often covered by comprehensive coverage, but it’s important to speak with your insurance company to see exactly what is protected.
What should I do if my catalytic converter is stolen?
You should contact the police right away if your catalytic converter is taken. Take pictures of the damage and give any information that could be used to locate the burglar. You should also report the theft to your insurance company. Your insurance provider will walk you through the procedure and inform you of what paperwork is required.
How can I prevent catalytic converter theft?
There are a few ways you can prevent catalytic converter theft, including:
Parking in well-lit areas
Install a catalytic converter protection device or shield
Engrave or scratch your VIN number on the catalytic converter
What is a catalytic converter protection device?
A metal cage or shield that covers the catalytic converter and makes it challenging to access is known as a catalytic converter protection device. Additionally, some gadgets contain a warning that activates if someone tries to remove the shield.
Things to Remember
Thefts of catalytic converters have increased recently.
Due to the high worth of the precious metals inside them, such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium, catalytic converters are frequently targeted by thieves.
Depending on the type and model of the car, replacing a stolen catalytic converter can cost anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.
Depending on the terms of the policy and the coverage the car owner selects, some insurance policies might pay for the cost of repairing a stolen catalytic converter.
Insurance companies may also demand a deductible from consumers before coverage for a stolen catalytic converter begins. Depending on the coverage, the deductible’s size may change.
Insurance companies occasionally increase the rates for clients who report a stolen catalytic converter.
However, the majority of auto insurance policies will cover theft and vandalism to a vehicle, which includes the theft of a catalytic converter. There is no special insurance coverage or standard insurance policy for catalytic converter theft.
Recommended Insurance Companies
Here are some well-known and trusted insurance companies that offer a wide range of car insurance for catalytic convertor thefts and more:
When choosing your car insurance provider it’s important to note the availability of coverage and the variations of cover case by case between companies and their policies. Knowing this, it’s important for you to shop around and find the best insurance policy that fits your requirements and also doesn’t hit your wallet too hard. Always read the fine print before choosing your insurance policy and do your due diligence reading up on the company’s user agreement and terms and conditions. Finding out all conditions, type of coverage, and whether you need to pay the excess in the event of theft are all decent questions to ask yourself before signing along the dotted line.
Insurance against catalytic convertor theft is very important, so choose the best fit just for you.