Catalytic converters are part of the exhaust system of vehicles. They are a target for thieves as they are coated in a precious metal that has a high value. Thieves will cut the catalytic converter from a parked car and sell them on to scrap metal dealers.
Vehicles with a greater clearance from the ground such as 4x4s are at the greatest risk as they are easier to access underneath. They tend to have larger engines which means they may contain more precious metals too.
What you can do to avoid becoming a victim
It is difficult to completely stop the threat but there are some things you can do to prevent the risk of catalytic converter theft:
- Park your car in a garage or secure area if possible.
- Park in well-lit and busy areas.
- If you have a fleet of cars, consider defensive parking. This is where you block high clearance vehicles with low clearance ones to restrict the access underneath.
- If your catalytic converter is ‘bolt on’ consider having the bolts welded shut.
- Be aware of anyone looking underneath or working on cars in your area.
- Use a security marking kit to register your catalytic converter (see below)
Marking your catalytic converter can help protect it from the risk of theft. It also makes it possible to track it and easier to convict offenders.
You can buy security marking kits from Retainagroup
The kits contain a coded sticker that you put on your catalytic converter and coat it with a permanent fluid to mark it.
You then register your code on the International Security Register (ISR) database, run by Retainagroup.
A marked catalytic converter makes it more difficult for a thief to sell it on and may deter them from attempting to steal it. Displaying a sticker in your window to state that it is marked might also put off a thief.
If your catalytic converter has been stolen or if you notice any suspicious activity, call 101 or report it online.
In an emergency, always call 999.
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27 Apr 21 2:06 PM