Push Starting a car

Hello all. I read in the owners manual for my 2010 Toyota Yaris (manual transmission) that I should never try to push start the car because my catalytic converter could be damaged. Does anyone know how likely this is to happen?

Since these new cars are new, they shouldnt need to be push started anyway.

I don’t see how push-starting and the converter are related…

I believe push-starting a car would send a lot of unburned fuel through the exhaust.

Buy a good set of jumper cables and you won’t have to worry about it.

That’s true, but I have owned two stick shifts previous (1988 volvo and 1994 Ford Aspire) and had to pop the clutch on both of them when the alternators went out. In the case of the volvo, I was on a road trip. Needless to say it came in handy. I’m just curious as to how much risk I run if I ever have to push start my Yaris.

I’ll do that. Thanks.

If it’s something you worry about and getting a jump start from a stranger doesn’t appeal to you, a jumper battery with an air compressor is a good compromise. We take ours everywhere.

If the car starts quickly when push started it won’t hurt the cat.

However, Toyota is assuming the worst. That would be a clueless owner with a car out of tune that won’t start and runs down the battery. Then you push the car to start and it doesn’t due to how out of whack the motor is, but unburned gas gets injected into the cylinders and then into the cat. Now one plug fires and you get a big backfire that can blow out the cat. Now you have a problem.

Thanks, I was kind of hoping that this was the case.

Thanks for the suggestion.

If the car starts quickly when push started it won’t hurt the cat.

…and a car like this won’t start quickly if at all when push started unless the issue is something other than the battery.

Uncle Turbo, do you really know Toyota is assuming the worst, or are you speculating?

This car has such a small engine, and such a small battery, that if it won’t start because of a dead battery, there is probably not enough power left in the battery to push start the car.