2021 Toyota Prius Limited Edition Super Sonic Red: Photo Source Toyota Pressroom
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Legislation Will Not Save Your Toyota Prius Catalytic Converter

In regards to catalytic converter theft, it seems lawmakers are more concerned about making useless laws than helping people. Here is what you need to know about legislation and why it will not save your Toyota Prius.

The idea of a law is terrific. It basically means that there is a rule to keep someone from doing something that is seen as incorrect in society. But what happens when people do not believe the restrictions apply to them?

This is 100 percent the issue we are dealing with when it comes to catalytic converter theft, and I am sorry to say, but no amount of legislation will stop thieves from stealing yours.

What Is The Real Issue At Hand?
The real problem at hand is that catalytic converter theft has not seen any slow down whatsoever. In fact, converter theft is up nationally over 293 percent from a year ago at this time.

This bit of information tells me the pandemic of catalytic converter theft is continually reaching new highs all the time. This is still partly due to the high cost of precious metals that keep the value of used converters very high.

Who Is Stealing These Converters?
Theft is occurring on vehicles that have easy-to-steal converters and also cars that have super ultra-low emissions (SULEV). Vehicles like the Toyota Prius, Honda Element, and many others are prime targets for thieves working in organized crime rings.

These black-market bandits have access to a veritable slaughterhouse of vehicles that can have their converter taken off within a matter of 90 seconds or less. Then they are taken and sold off to other organizations that the police have not found out about.

The theft is beyond controllable right now, and the worst part is legislators think they are doing the right thing. They are not, and here is why.

Why Legislation Does Not Work
When it comes to theft, having people who think they are above the law does not make the law any more effective. The crooks who are going after the cats do not care one iota about a law.

They also care zero percent about VIN etching or paint on your converter. Why, you ask? Great question. The thieves already know that the metal casing surrounding the substrate is useless to them. The converters are hollowed out, the metal casing is broken down and discarded.

I know that some people will say that these things help law enforcement, but the thing is, even if your converter was found, you would not get it back. Once it falls into the hands of the police, that is evidence, and you are hosed.

Again, the only thing that this does is help legislators try and pass laws that do nothing to help people. Good luck with that.

What Is Actually Helpful?
Here is what you need to know about protecting your catalytic converter. Covering it all comes down to time. How much time does it take for a thief to steal your converter? The longer it takes, the less likely a thief is to try and steal your converter.

If a thief has to work around a shield, they are far less likely to take the converter unless: they have adequate time, no one is around to hear them, or if they know exactly how they will remove the catalytic converter.

There are several things out on the market that companies have available. The most effective product I have seen comes from a company called Cat Security™ that makes a shield style cover that, when fastened to the vehicle's chassis, provides a strong barrier against theft.

The shields, in my opinion, are the best defense against theft because they are the hardest to work around and have the best track record of any other device I have seen.

Theft cannot be stopped; you cannot legislate anything into law that will keep these people from stealing converters. The only thing that will stop it is making catalytic converters no longer valuable (not going to happen) or building cars that do not require them (electric).

Every person needs to be hyper-aware of this situation and the problem plaguing our nation and the entire world. Look for ways to keep your vehicle out of sight and out of mind to a would-be thief.

Take a stand and protect your catalytic converter. Park inside if you can or next to other vehicles where yours is boxed in. Make it hard for a thief to get under and take the converter because it will cost you your time (priceless), your money, and of course, you will be left feeling completely violated.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to seeing you in the next article. Remember Todays Adventures are Tomorrows Stories.

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Image source: Courtesy of Toyota Pressroom.

Peter Neilson is an automotive consultant specializing in electric cars and hybrid battery technologies. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Automotive Service Technology from Weber State University. Peter can be reached on Linkedin and you can tweet him at The_hybrid_guy on Twitter. Find his page on Facebook at Certified Auto Consulting. Read more of Peter's stories at Toyota news coverage on Torque News. Search Toyota Prius Torque News for more in depth Prius coverage from our reporter.

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I have heard that they still remove the converter by removing the shield...the shield is useless, but now there is an alarm that protected people from losing their Catalytic converter... A few months ago I lost my catalytic converter and it $3000 to replace it and if you don't have a full coverage insurance good luck! The police is chasing innocent people, but the thief is busy with their business...at the police station near where the steal mine, they confiscated 30 of them, but they were kept as evidence! Absurd! We have to suffer and the criminal is free...
The most valuable legislation is that which requires auto wreckers / scrap / recyclers to only purchase and maintain records of catalytic converters they purchase/sell. Once such a law is in place, then police have several ways to eliminate the cash flow and penalize this illegal trade which will reduce the number of catalytic converters stolen.
Legislations will help to stop this. They are only stealing cat because they can sell them. Having scrap dealers copy driver license, document each sales, and disallowed cash sales will stop cat thefts. Period.
Mike what you say works until the gangs start trafficking cats across borders... too easy. Look at our southern border...