Will my car insurance cover a stolen catalytic converter?
February 17, 2022
In the last year, you’ve probably seen the words “catalytic converter” hit the headlines. Unfortunately, there's a good reason for that—catalytic converter thefts are occurring at an alarming rate across the country.
Catalytic converters can be pricey to replace, so we’ll give you some insight into why they are valuable to thieves, what to do with a stolen catalytic converter and how car insurance (like HiRoad) can help with any coverages.
Why do people steal catalytic converters?
Catalytic converters, before recent thefts, weren’t likely something you heard about or even knew existed on your car. Found underneath gasoline-powered vehicles, catalytic converters are an essential part of a vehicle’s exhaust system to help control emissions and make them more environmentally friendly.
So what’s the value in stealing one? It turns out catalytic converters are known to contain precious metals like palladium and rhodium, making the asking price for these devices—exceptionally high.
TheNew York Times reported the price of palladium hit a record high at $2K to $5K an ounce. Rhodium has also skyrocketed (more than 3,000 percent) to $21,900 an ounce. Both of these precious metals are above the price of gold.
With these soaring prices in metal, the black market is seeing its fair share of stolen catalytic converters. Thefts are often done by individuals sawing off the device underneath the car, selling it for a pretty penny.
Unfortunately, it comes at a cost to those who are the victims of these thefts.
What to do if your catalytic converter is stolen
The most popular vehicle of choice for catalytic converter theft? Toyota Prius. Why? Because of the ease of removal and the high amount of precious metals found in the device. Catalytic converter theft is considered a crime, so your first step is to call the police. Don’t forget to get a copy of the police report for insurance claims.
Now, if your catalytic converter becomes stolen, it can be dangerous to drive a car without a catalytic converter, so plan to get a tow.
Your next step would be to contact your auto insurance provider when you experience a catalytic converter theft. They can help determine things like towing, rentals and claims.
Will insurance cover a stolen catalytic converter?
The cost of replacing a catalytic converter can range from $1,500 to $8K, depending on the vehicle you own. The average insurance claim for this type of repair is between $3K to $4K. The good news is that if you’ve purchased Comprehensive coverage, there may be less expense when it comes to repairs.
If you’re looking for a tow and have Comprehensive coverage, this insurance coverage option can cover towing. Also, suppose you have Rental coverage incorporated into your insurance policy. In that case, a rental car may be an option while your vehicle is in the shop (it can take up to a week for catalytic converter repairs, depending on part availability).
At HiRoad, if you experience a catalytic converter theft, check into the app and file a claim. You’ll be connected with a Claims Specialist to answer any questions you may have. Our team will review the details of your claim to determine if the incident is covered.
How to protect your car from catalytic converter theft
There are some helpful ways you can help deter thieves looking for catalytic converters. With some help from the National Insurance Crime Bureau, here’s what to do to avoid theft:
Park in a secure, well-lit area
Install an anti-theft device
Park in a garage, if it’s available to you
Although catalytic converter theft is on the rise, you can help avoid it from happening to you with these preventative measures. But sometimes, even the avoidable happens, which is why we’re here.
With the right auto insurance coverage, catalytic converter theft doesn’t have to keep you off the road for long. Learn more about our coverage options at HiRoad by starting a quote today.The information in this article was obtained from various sources not associated with HiRoad®. While we believe it to be reliable and accurate, we do not warrant the accuracy or reliability of the information. HiRoad is not responsible for, and does not endorse or approve, either implicitly or explicitly, the content of any third party sites that might be hyperlinked from this page. The information is not intended to replace manuals, instructions or information provided by a manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional, or to affect coverage under any applicable insurance policy. These suggestions are not a complete list of every loss control measure. HiRoad makes no guarantees of results from use of this information.
Stay on the path
Get HiRoad in your inbox
Share your email to get the latest about our community of mindful drivers.