Car owners are now facing a theft epidemic. Just when you thought the pandemic couldn’t get any worse, state departments started witnessing a sudden increase in catalytic converter thefts as well, putting the residents into an even more financial drain.
Catalytic Converter Theft Statistics
The shocking statistics that support the theft increase claims come from a total of 12 major police departments in the country. Due to the sudden increase in thefts, speculations of this crime having organizational motives are coming into fruition. Many detectives in charge of this case are slowly turning their heads away from this being only a crime of opportunity.
It is very likely that this crime spree can be a collective effort, and have deeper roots into something bigger than what it seems. This is due to the surreal nature of the crime hike. In 2019, the count for catalytic converter theft was about 68 in one area. This count increased to about 273 nearing the end of 2020, and then 130 since the start of 2021.
The number of cases in the 2021 year so far is more than the three-year total of cases that occurred from 2017 to 2019. This is a rapid increase in thefts is a serious crime spike for the authorities to deal with. There are many reasons for this crime hike. While some are speculative, others are obvious.
Catalytic Converter from a car can be Valuable
Catalytic converters contain deposits of precious metals inside them. Therefore, when a thief quietly walks away with these auto parts they can ultimately sell them for huge amounts of money. The precious metals inside the catalytic converter help filter out the combustion gas inside an exhaust and reduce the number of pollutants that a car releases by reacting to them.
The prices for the metals inside these converters are skyrocketing, and this can be a major reason contributing to the increase in theft. Metals such as Palladium, Rhodium, and Platinum can sell for thousands of dollars for an ounce.
They are Easy to Steal
It only takes thieves about a minute or two to jack the car into elevation and cut each end of the catalytic converter. A portable power saw, or any other type of mechanical cutter slices through the exhaust pipes like butter. This allows the robbers to carry out their operation swiftly and quietly without coming into notice. This is why many thieves have been able to carry out this crime in broad daylight without any complications.
Car Owners Face Troubles
Since the crime rate in terms of catalytic converters is booming, the prices to reinstall converters are also rising. Car owners that are victims of this crime not only have to spend close to a thousand dollars to purchase and install a converter, but also have to go through the hassles of finding one during a shortage. Since more converters are now stolen, the supply for alternatives is not promptly meeting the demand, causing the prices to go up. Catalytic converter crises can befall any car owner. If you have heard anything from your close-by neighbors about stolen converters, it’s time you keep a watchful eye on your vehicle.