September 28, 2023


Just Do Automotive

What’s a catalytic converter and why are thieves stealing them from vehicles parked at LRT/MRT stations?

3 min read

A few of you would possibly pay attention to thieves stealing catalytic converters in Malaysia, one thing that has been taking place with growing frequency these days. The catalytic converter is a part of a automotive’s exhaust system, and thieves have been focusing on vehicles parked at LRT/MRT stations to steal them. Every catalytic converter is price something from RM500 to RM2,500. Fortunately, police have managed to catch two males concerned in numerous catalytic converters thefts within the Klang Valley. However we don’t know if that is the tip.

What’s a catalytic converter and why is it so worthwhile? A catalytic converter is a tool used within the exhaust system of automobiles to cut back dangerous emissions. It incorporates a matrix of supplies coated with sure catalysts (like platinum, palladium, and rhodium) that promote chemical reactions changing dangerous compounds into much less dangerous ones.

Particularly, it converts carbon monoxide (a toxic fuel) into carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides (which contribute to smog and acid rain) into nitrogen and oxygen, and unburned hydrocarbons (which contribute to smog) into carbon dioxide and water.

What is a catalytic converter and why are thieves stealing them from cars parked at LRT/MRT stations?

The catalytic converter was first launched in america market within the 1975 mannequin yr to adjust to tightening laws on auto exhaust emissions. It was developed in response to the U.S. Clear Air Act of 1970, which set requirements to cut back pollution launched by passenger automobiles.

After its introduction in america, using catalytic converters unfold regularly worldwide, pushed by tightening emission requirements in numerous international locations. Nonetheless, the tempo of adoption various considerably relying on the area.

In Europe, for instance, catalytic converters didn’t turn out to be widespread till the late Nineteen Eighties and early Nineteen Nineties, as leaded petrol, which is incompatible with catalytic converters, was nonetheless generally used. In different elements of the world, the adoption of catalytic converters got here even later.

Unleaded petrol was launched in Malaysia within the yr 1994. We later totally phased out leaded petrol in 1999, which allowed for using catalytic converters in automobiles with out the difficulty of the lead within the gas deactivating the catalyst.

Leaded petrol is incompatible with catalytic converters as a result of the lead within the gas can coat the catalyst supplies. This coating primarily “poisons” the catalyst and prevents it from facilitating the chemical reactions that cut back dangerous emissions.

The lead interferes with the catalyst’s capacity to advertise reactions that convert carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides into nitrogen and oxygen, and unburned hydrocarbons into carbon dioxide and water. That’s why the introduction of unleaded petrol was a vital step within the widespread adoption of catalytic converters in automobiles.

Catalytic converters are sometimes focused by thieves as a result of they include treasured metals akin to platinum, palladium, and rhodium. These metals act as catalysts to assist cut back dangerous emissions from automobile exhaust.

Attributable to their excessive worth, particularly with growing commodity costs for these metals, thieves can promote stolen catalytic converters to scrap metallic sellers for a major sum. Moreover, eradicating a catalytic converter from the underside of a automotive could be comparatively fast, particularly for skilled thieves, making it a pretty goal.

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