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Catalytic Converter

A mechanic just told me I need a catalytic converter for my 2002 toyota camry and I don’t understand why? He said he ran a computer generated report and it told him my car needs a “new one.” The cost would be about $500.00. How can I confirm the need?

Don’t forget, if you are in the US and your car has less than 80,000 miles, the cat is still covered by the federally-mandated emissions warranty. If it has failed an emissions inspection, take it to a dealer and Toyota must fix it for free.

We would need to know what codes were generated (format= P0123)  More than one converter has been replaced because of a bad sensor.

You could go to an able, honest, mechanic for diagnostics. The trouble codes, which may be the only “computer generated report” the tester is referring to, NEVER says to change a part. Rather, it says, “I’m getting word that there is a problem in a certain circuit”. It doesn’t know [i]why.[/I] Further checks, and tests, by a human, will reveal the why and the what.
This may be the trouble code: http://www.obd-codes.com/p0420 The article gives testing/checking instructions for the code.