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Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 9:12 pm
by JTalley
Federal law prohibits removal of the catalytic converter. I know, most people do anyway, but I'm trying to keep it legal. The only problem is, nobody else wants me to.
The law says that I must have a written statement providing proof that the catalytic converter is actually faulty before replacement, but I can't get one. The person at the muffler shop actually laughed when I said I needed this statement. He thinks I should just put a piece of pipe in its place and be done with it.
I'm getting 10 mpg here on average. It's getting worse almost every day, and just recently started to sputter sometimes when first starting it. And when I say sputter, I mean it- it chugs along, barely fast enough to keep running. Then it picks up and runs. How do I get this statement?


Update:
Federal law:
(6) When can I install an aftermarket converter?
Generally, there are only 3 situations when you can install an aftermarket converter.
They are:
(1) if the converter is missing from the vehicle when brought in for exhaust
system repair; or
(2) if a State or local inspection program has determined the existing converter
has been lead poisoned, damaged, or otherwise needs replacement; or
(3) if the vehicle is more than 5 years old or has more than 50,000 miles*
(8 years/80,000 miles for 1995 and newer vehicles) and a legitimate need for
replacement has been established and appropriately documented (e.g., a
plugged converter or unrepairable exhaust leaks).


The underlined is what I'm concerned about.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:06 pm
by timelessbeing
You are thinking too much. If the law says you have to have a converter then put in a converter. If it has the EPA label on it then I see no reason why anyone would bother you.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:19 pm
by okie1
Oklahoma does not even have a state vehicle inspection program, they killed it about 20 years ago. I don't think the police have time to slide under everyones cars to see if they have a legal cat. Just my opinion

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:38 pm
by arlon
I'd just have muffler guy write "bad converter replaced" on the receipt. That's documentation enough...

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 10:44 pm
by timelessbeing
If he has a missing or illegal cat, then there is that 1 in a 1000 chance that the officer will peek under there, and then he might give a hefty fine that Jake won't appreciate.

It's too bad cats are so expensive. Why don't you just remove the innards from the one you have until you get more money. Once you put the muffler and tailpipe on, then nobody will know.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 11:16 pm
by doyoulikeithere
The newer cats are straight thru design and fairly easy to 'Gut"
JT's cat may be the flat-wide cat that isnt as easy to gut.
At Any rate, if the mech says he will put in a straight pipe, I say let him.
If a cop ever questions it, "it was like that when it was purchased" is the story to use....

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Fri Jan 27, 2012 4:28 am
by Kidhauler
There are 2 kinds of cats. Oxidizing which is the flat pancake style then there is the oxidizing reducing or three way cat. You can no longer get replacements for the OC cats you can only buy the three ways. Just go buy a cat from the local parts shop and bolt it in. The three ways are better than your stock one. There is no such thing as a illegal cat convertor. If you bang out the centre then it's illegal but a new cat is a new cat. But if you have no inspection program then take it out and put in a pipe until you can afford the $150 or so for a new cat.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:43 pm
by leadtrombone
x2 ^^

At least you won't have to go get it smogged every year...

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:28 pm
by JTalley
The new cat FINALLY came in! It's a Magnaflow high-flow. I can't wait to put it on... I just need to pick up the brackets and what not, then I can crawl under there and get started! Expect a before and after video.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 6:04 pm
by LiftedAWDAstro
Have fun and wear safety glasses under there. Exhaust rust in the eyes is not good!

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 2:15 pm
by JTalley
I crawled under there to put it on... I couldn't even get the old one off. I'll apparently have to cut or grind those rusted clamps off, then buy new clamps. Just to be sure, are there any gaskets or anything like that on there that I'll have to replace? I know some converters have gaskets, but I've never messed with one before.

Re: Bad cat, and trying to stay legal...

Posted: Fri Apr 13, 2012 6:36 pm
by LiftedAWDAstro
No gaskets. Good luck trying to get them apart. ](*,) That's one of those jobs I have not found an easy way except to just work at it and try to pry apart the rusted pieces.