What is it About Catalytic Converters That Makes Michiganders Want To Steal Them?
I have never understood stealing, but why are so many people stealing catalytic converters?
What is a Catalytic Converter?
A catalytic converter is to control emissions from your vehicle's exhaust by converting toxic gases and pollutants in exhaust gas into less toxic pollutants. In essence, it helps our environment and that is a good thing.
What is the Value of a Catalytic Converter?
The price of a brand new catalytic converter can be anywhere between $800 all the way up to nearly $8000. Some larger vehicles require two converters and those are usually the ones that cost over $7000.
Used catalytic converters are valuable to junkyards who either re-sell them to customers or remove the valuable metals that are inside. Junkyards and online services will give anywhere from $140 to $1500 per converter.
What Are the Valuable Metals Found in a Catalytic Converter?
There are three valuable metals found inside a catalytic converter that is used to aid in the chemical reaction that makes exhaust pollutants less dangerous. Those metals are platinum, palladium, and rhodium.
The value of platinum is around $1,100 an ounce. Palladium is worth close to $2,400 an ounce. Rhodium is the most valuable of the three and can range between $18,000 to $26,000 per ounce. Rhodium is actually worth more than gold.
Why Do People Steal Catalytic Converters?
Why do people steal catalytic converters? Simple...money. As you can see above the converters alone are worth good quick money and if a thief goes for the metals found inside there are potential big paydays.
Another reason people steal catalytic converters is it's relatively easy. Using a cordless circular saw you can get one off a car or truck in a few minutes and be on your way. If the thieves are working together they can be in and out with a few converters and off to the junkyard in no time.
2 Men in Kent County Arrested for Stealing Catalytic Converters
I have been hearing about catalytic converters being swiped for the last couple of years in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, and Battle Creek. Perhaps the pandemic and poor economy have led to more thefts.
WOOD reported that on March 1, Kent County Sheriff's Office arrested two men ages 35 and 55 who are suspects of stealing multiple catalytic converters. The two men were actually caught in the act of cutting off a converter from a vehicle.
Search warrants were issued and the sheriff's office was able to gather stolen property and get it returned.
Kent County Sheriff's Department is asking anyone with information regarding catalytic converter thefts are to contact them at 616.632.6125. You can also keep a low profile by using the Silent Observer at 616.774.2345.