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Honda Civic Catalytic Converter - OEM or Aftermarket?

A few years ago, the exhaust manifold on my 2000 Honda Civic DX cracked. I had it replaced with an aftermarket exhaust manifold, which included the catalytic converter. About a year later, my check engine light came on – apparently the catalytic converter was not functioning well enough.

I need to deal with this problem now because I live in California and need to get my smog test for renewing my registration. My question is, do I get the $1000 Honda exhaust manifold or do I get a $230 aftermarket exhaust manifold? Was the problem I had with the catalytic converter just a fluke? Or is the aftermarket part of lesser quality?

Thanks for your thoughts!

Why did the exhaust manifold include the Catalytic converter??? I knew some older Subaru’s did…but Honda never did.

Aftermarket catalytic converters are fine.

I’m still confused with the need to replace the exhaust manifold though.

On the Civic and other similar cars, they made the catalytic converter and the exhaust manifold a single piece.

How long is the warranty on the present cat?

It doesn’t matter if you buy an OEM or an aftermarket cat. Regardless of your choice, you need to get it in writing that this new cat will solve your problem. This might even be a misdiagnosis. If the new one doesn’t solve the problem, you should have a choice between a refund and another cat.

Thanks for the advice.

I don’t think the aftermarket one I bought was ever under warranty – the mechanic I go to uses Honda parts, but told me I could order an aftermarket part and she’d put it in for me, so I did (given the huge price difference).

I guess I should either go with the Honda part this time, or find a mechanic that stocks aftermarket parts and will guaranty the fix. My mechanic did do the exhaust test and determined that my exhaust was indeed sub-standard (that this was not just due to a computer malfunction).

Again – thank you.

If your car is a California emission vehicle, its going to need a California emission catalytic converter. I Don’t know if there is a aftermarket catalytic converter that meets California emissions for your car. You may be stuck going to the dealer.

Not living in California any more, I understand that if it is CARB certified, you can use it.