Is there a less expensive way to replace a catalytic converter on a '99 Ford Taurus LX V6 OHV than >$1k? Will not a universal work or possibly replacing one of the split off two? I’m told by mech that it’s not oxygen sensors.
But not if you live in California.
I would not get a universal one - the likelihood of it keeping the check engine light off is low. If you order a direct fit unit, you may be able to replace just a single cat, but even a whole unit isn’t too terrible in these cases. RockAuto carries them for $298-429 plus shipping. You’ll still need to get it installed, which will be another $150+ or so in labor.
Then you also need to find out why the cat failed. They generally don’t fail on their own. Something else is either clogging them, leaking fuel into them, or something hit them. If the reason it failed isn’t corrected, the new one will likely fail as well.
On my old 97, I had one fail… but I also hit a 2x4 bouncing down the road… left a nice dent in it and tore up the brake rotor shield as well, so it was pretty obvious why it failed.
Last year had to replace water pump, coolant reservoir, EGR Valve, vac hose, spark plug wire. Last couple were from all spitting due to the coolant mess. Cleaned all up that I could & checked all over for any other signs of problems, but couldn’t find any at time. Could the spray from all the coolant issues have contributed to this failure? I also have a heater core clog, but as it doesn’t cause fail of inspec, & the converter does & is mightily more expensive, so wanted to hit that 1st. Car runs fine & no rotten egg smell or anything.
MY GOD…1K? Thats Highway robbery. Yes there are alt ways of saving…Go on the net and buy yourself a proper and correct NON universal Cat…Then go to your local muffler shop and have them put it on for you. This forces them to only be able to charge you for labor and gaskets and not hide any costs in their EXPENSIVE cat. Or do it yourself…its a bolt on affair
Catalytic converter failure is usually due to a misfiring engine or one with a mixture problem.