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Thread: Cat Converter

  1. #1
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    Cat Converter

    I think the converter is bad, do I have to replace it or can I cut it out and run a straight pipe. Will car run ok? any known problems doing this?
    Thanks,
    Don
    1989 White/ Red interior

  2. #2

    Re: Cat Converter

    It will run OK with a straight pipe. I have done it on other cars but not a Reatta. At one time you could by a "test pipe" made to replace the cat but I'm not sure if they are still available.

    There are problems you will run into:
    • It will not pass emissions tests if required in your state.
    • Most muffler shops will not do the work for you.
    • You may be breaking federal laws by doing it.
    Ronnie
    1988 Red/Tan
    BCA & Reatta Div.

    www.ReattaOwner.com - Reatta Owners Journal
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  3. #3
    Member BAABUICK's Avatar
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    Re: Cat Converter

    Don,
    I replaced my cat with a straight pipe several years ago & haven't had any issues (no fumes, no rasp). If anything, the exhaust note is a little deeper.
    1989 Reatta (sold May 2/11)
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  4. #4
    VeloCity CarPets padgett's Avatar
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    Re: Cat Converter

    Think it is the cars with multiple sensors that have problems, not ones like the Reatta that just have a single sensor.

  5. #5

    Re: Cat Converter

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Hudd View Post
    I think the converter is bad, do I have to replace it or can I cut it out and run a straight pipe. Will car run ok? any known problems doing this?
    Before cutting out the cat, what is the problem? Is there excessive back pressure? (This can be measured by placing a back pressure gauge in the O2 sensor hole.)
    1986 Porsche 944 NA
    1990 Buick Reatta convertible
    1996 Chevrolet K1500 Suburban
    2002 Buick Rendezvous CXL
    2004 Olds Alero GLS
    2006 MB C230 Sport
    BCA #45320, RDIV #1066

  6. #6
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    Re: Cat Converter

    wws, the pipe from the engine is coming outof the cat, pipes VERY hot, can feel like a vibration while driving, getting a hesitate and something that feels light a stumble or a miss while sitting a a light.
    1989 White/ Red interior

  7. #7
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    Re: Cat Converter

    Also, I changed the o2 because it was throwing the code, did not code for 2 days, now it is coding the o2 again.
    1989 White/ Red interior

  8. #8
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    Re: Cat Converter

    It would not pass our state inspection in Pennsylvania.

  9. #9
    Senior Member KDirk's Avatar
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    Re: Cat Converter

    Well,

    The car doesn't need a cat to run well. Will probably even gain you a small amount of additional HP (5 or so) without, and the exhaust will probably sound just a bit more "aggressive". The big issue is whether your state still requires emission testing on pre OBD-2 (1996 model year and later) cars. Missouri [thankfully] dropped the requirement for any pre-1996 model year cars to be emissions tested a couple of years back. So, I only have to get an annual safety (which is not that stringent anyway) and the straight pipe is a non-issue.

    I would point out that I bought the car with no cat, previous owner was in KY so I assume that it was below the radar there as well. I have no desire to restore the converter to my car as the state will not flag me for it being removed, and thus it is needless expense to put one back. It has a professionally installed (cut/flared) straight pipe on on, and has caused me not a lick of trouble.

    Works for me, and I maintain my car well so I doubt it is contributing any real pollution more than it would with the cat present. It does smell a touch rich at times (if idling and I am standing at the rear of the car) but not enough that I am concerned about it.

    YMMV

    KDirk
    Kevin Dierkes
    St. Louis, MO
    BCA #44205 / RDiv #2020

    1988 Reatta coupe white over burgundy BSM/suede seats #1134
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  10. #10
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    Re: Cat Converter

    Thanks for the replies. No state inspection here in Michigan so I guess out it comes.
    1989 White/ Red interior

  11. #11

    Re: Cat Converter

    Again, you might want to have the back pressure checked - just to make sure. Waste of time and money to replace a perfectly good cat - with a straight pipe or otherwise.
    1986 Porsche 944 NA
    1990 Buick Reatta convertible
    1996 Chevrolet K1500 Suburban
    2002 Buick Rendezvous CXL
    2004 Olds Alero GLS
    2006 MB C230 Sport
    BCA #45320, RDIV #1066

  12. #12
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    Re: Cat Converter

    converter was plugged so replaced with straight pipe but, still have therough running at idle, not all the time but does seem to be getting worse. Acts like it is going to stall but never has yet. Gas milage continues to go down, though by changing the converter would fix this but it did not. I do have the non delco coil pack, but do not see any oozing. any ideas?
    Thanks
    1989 White/ Red interior

  13. #13
    EastCoastReattaParts.com NCReatta's Avatar
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    Re: Cat Converter

    MAF sensor? you might could go ahead and do the coil-pack conversion. Mine has that problem I think, it didn't used to stall, but in the past couple months, it has a couple times.
    I don't have an oozing, but my friend told me I probably still need to change the coil.
    Marck Barker
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    Lots of parts cars, lots of parts. You name it we've got it in stock. Call or email with your needs.

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