Rare exotic catalytic converter?


#1

Does anybody know if replacing a catalytic converter on a 1995 Geo Prizm 4 cyl must cost $500? The repair shop I’m going to is not the dealer, but they insisted I prepay $580 to factory order the direct-fit part. I called a GM dealer and they quoted $500. The pipe to the muffler needs replacing too, and my bill this Friday when I get the repair is $900. What do you think?


#2

Cat convereters are expensive. The ceramic substrate inside is coated with a platinum-palladium/Rhodium deposition, truely expensive stuff. And it’s generally in a stainless canister to withstand the hhigh heat without premature demise. If the pipe they replaced was the one from the manifold to the cat converter, that’s expensive too and can be hard to replace, but I think the $400 labor price was high.


#3

I belive this car is a toyota with chey body check this out if so see if the toyota parts is cheaper. check out part store buy it and give it to shop. I,am not sure about your car but sometimes you can buy rebuilt cat,s it is not cheap any more


#4

$500 is pretty reasonable compared to the $650 I was quoted. I ended up finding a better deal by going to a muffler shop where they were able to order a rebuilt one from California. Shop around.

The reason mine was so expensive is that the catalytic converter and the exhaust manifold are the same piece in my Civic. Your Prizim might be the same way. Either way, you could look into a custom exhaust system with a header and a standard one-size-fits-all catalytic converter, but the price might be just as high or higher in the end. However, this MIGHT allow you to buy a catalytic converter for less than $125. The header and the new muffler might put you back near $500 though…but it is worth checking into.

By the way, if you need a new catalytic converter and a new pipe connecting the cat to the muffler, you really should just replace the muffler too. There is no reason to put on all that new hardware and stick with the old muffler. You will just end up replacing the muffler too in a few months and paying more in the long run. If you end up with a muffler that has a lifetime guarantee, you can save money on labor by just getting the whole exhaust system replaced at the same time.

Keep in mind that with my “new” rebuilt catalytic converter, my “check engine” light is still on. If you live in a state that conducts emissions testing, you should just fork over the $500 and not mess with a rebuilt catalytic converter or a custom exhaust.


#5

None California direct fit catalytic converter is about $100.00, and a California direct fit is $110.00. The pipe going from the cat to the muffler about $100.00. Add hardware, shipping, and the total cost of parts is about $250.00 to $300.00. Thats was figured for a 1.6L engine. ALL Walker direct fit stuff


#6

A Walker direct fit cat from Rockauto.com is about $107. That’s about what I paid for mine at NAPA and fit just fine.


#7

Bing, That where I was checking prices


#8

What kind of car was it for?


#9

95 Geo Prizm 1.6L. The OP did not say what size engine the car has


#10

hi i,am back boxwrench. I looked at jc whintey check out toyota and przim. looks the same but make sure what type they have $56.00 to $112.00 you can get the exhaust and also buy the gasket for cat… check around for prices . remember there is different tyes of steel used
regular, stainless steel I would look for cheapest one since the car is a 1995.


#11

I’d get the JC Whitney CAT and a Pacesetter exhaust from the CAT back through the tailpipe. The whole thing might cost you $350 and the Pacesetter will outlast the original. I just did exactly the same repair on my Wifes’ 95 Civiv . . . after 5 exhaust systems I got tired of fixing it . . got a replacement CAT from JC Whitney and a Pacesetter from #1 Motormart online. Fit almost without modification . . . sounds great, not loud at all, just a little purr . . . very satisfied. Rocketman


#12

You have two catalytic converters on this vehicle. One is a manifold mounted converter with a heavy steel casing. The other converter is what is called an “in-line” converter, which is behind the manifold converter in the exhaust system. (Your front exhaust pipe bolts to the manifold converter and the rear of your front exhaust pipe bolts to the in-line converter.) The manifold mount converters are generally more expensive than the inline converters, however your $900 repair sounds correct from a dealer for both converters and the front exhaust pipe. If you had taken your vehicle to a specialty muffler shop you most likely would have saved money.


#13

[i]I knew it!!![/i]

I had a feeling that it wasn’t as simple as replacing a $500 catalytic converter with one that you can order for less than $125 online. Thank you, Marco, for contributing.


#14

“The manifold mount converters are generally more expensive than the inline converters, however your $900 repair sounds correct from a dealer for both converters and the front exhaust pipe. If you had taken your vehicle to a specialty muffler shop you most likely would have saved money”.

That would only hold true if the car has California emissions. Otherwise this car only has the one inline Catalytic converter available for less then $125 online.


#15

I really appreciate all of your responses! This is me, the original poster of the question. More specifics: I have a 95 Geo Prizm 1.6L 4 cyl. GM dealer quoted the c-converter price for direct fit. I plan to keep this car 6 more years, and live in the salt-covered winter streets of Milwaukee. The car shop is not the dealer, but took that heafty $500 deposit before my repair because they said the c-converter was a “special order.” For the price, I sure hope they are including a new muffler, I’m not sure! My appt is tomorrow. The $900 repair bill will rise $400 more if they have to replace the manifold part that connects from the c-converter closer to the engine. My understanding is they are replacing everything from the c-converter back to the muffler. Dang I am so screwed. I called back and the shop HIGHLY recommended direct fit, not universal. They were able to knock $100 off the price of c-converter because they were able to “find a direct fit Toyota c-converter a bit cheaper.” Yes, I’ve been online all over seeing direct fit prices for c-converters around $130. I’m getting the sense from the shop that I couldn’t cancel my appt. because of the prepayment I made. Stupid, stupid. Expensive lesson!.