Bought new in '95 and never had any trouble…routine maintenance only. Check engine light indicates need new Catalytic converter. It burns no oil, transmission is fine…no trouble at all. But mechanic quotes factory cat at more than retail price of my truck. Is it time to look for a replacement or worth the money to replace the cat?
Shop around for a generic catalytic converter. If the rest of the truck is OK, it has a lot of miles left on it. In developing countries Toyota trucks go 500,000 miles or more; they are real work horses.
There is no code that indicates the need for a new cat. It may say “converter efficiency below threshold,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean the cat is bad.
Sometimes new O2 sensors will restore the cat to its proper function, and O2 sensors are a LOT less expensive than catalytic converters.
Either way, fixing it is less expensive than buying a new truck.
A generic “direct fit” cat converter will work perfectly, and the cost should be very reasonable. I had to replace the one in my '89 Toyota pickup at about 250-300,000 due to a rot hole opening up. I don’t remember the price, but it was not very expensive.
Or, if you’d rather get rid of the truck, let me know and I’ll be happy to drop by this weekend and pick it up. I miss my Toyota pickup.
I also would check out the O2 sensors, could be a much cheaper fix. Next would be a generic cat.