Deterring catalytic converter theives

So, I just had the cat stolen from my 1993 4Runner. They stole it in broad daylight from a university parking lot at UT Austin. It looks like it was a quick job, probably in and out in less then 2 minutes.

I just got the estimate for replacing it, ~$1100. Is there an effective way of deterring future theft? I was thinking about have a skid plate mounted on the underside. What is a reasonable price for a skid plate?

Any thoughts or suggestions?

Autozone has cats for your car for under $200. Who gave you the $1100 estimate?

Progressive gave me the estimate (they’ll cover everything above my deductible). I had checked autozone for prices and noted the $150 cat. I mentioned that to the insurance company, but they mentioned that they have had problems with the aftermarket cats failing. They also suggested that I may have a problem passing future emission tests.

“Comprehensive” insurance on my cars runs under $100/year and even includes glass coverage ( I have a zero deductible). You could check with your agent on the coverages/costs. I realize this doesn’t prevent the theft, but minimizes the loss.

Catalytic converters on 4runners and other vehicles are so expensive because they are constructed with precious metals. The inexpensive aftermarket converters are not, and thus tend not to perform as well as the original converters. Sometimes they work well enough to get certain vehicles to pass, but not always, or at least not for very long.

As for theft, there are companies working on solutions to the problem as we speak. Here’s one solution:

Yeah, I looked up catclamp. Admittedly I have my doubts. A skid plate would be a more definitive statement–something of chastity belt. If a skid plate is installed, would there be any side affects (such as overheating)?

Could be, but one of them was made by Bosal, an OE supplier.

Did they cut it off or did they unbolt it? Part of the reason why Toyota trucks are the target of choice for catalytic converter thieves is that they’re easy to crawl under and the converters are only held on with, IIRC, four bolts. Very easy to remove without a lot of noise. You can have the exhaust shop weld the bolts on so it won’t be as easy. Sure they can still cut it off, but that’ll be noisy and that’ll probably be enough of a deterrent for most thieves to move on.

My bolts were rusted solid. They cut the cat out, taking the everything plus a little extra (i.e. they also took the bolt joints).

Cars sit too low to the ground for thieves to crawl under. They burn less fuel, too. Think about it.

constructed with precious metals. The inexpensive aftermarket converters are not,

Is it not true that all convertors are constructed of various precious metals? Otherwise they would do their job, albiet not as good as o.e. I believe they are but of course not as well.