Check Engine Light and After Market Catalytic Convertor
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Thread: Check Engine Light and After Market Catalytic Convertor

  1. #1
    crv|oc Rank: Member
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    Angry Check Engine Light and After Market Catalytic Convertor

    I had my catalytic converter replaced by Midas about 4 years ago. I have a 98 CRV with about 196,000 miles on it. I was told by Honda to get it replaced at Midas. Unfortunatly Honda forgot to mention that Midas would put a after market Catalytic Converter on my car and that can often cause the check engine light to turn on. I live in a state where if you check engine light is on because of a faulty converter then you won't pass inspection. Since its a after market part it can cause my check engine light to turn on, even though the part is not faulty. I hate to spend 1000 dollars on a Honda Catalytic Converter when the part isn't even broken. My check engine light eventually turned off for about 2 weeks and has turned back on. Does anyone have any suggestions, should I wait and see if it turns off? Also how long does it take for the computer to clear, meaning how soon from when the engine light goes off can I take it in for inspection?? I am angry that I have to spend 1000 dollars on a that a parts not broken and where in the beginning Honda suggested I go to a place that they knew would put a after market part on that they knew would cause problems.

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  3. #2
    crv|oc Rank: Junior
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    so you had the cat replaced 4yrs ago and the CEL just came on now or it was on since the day it was replaced?

    dont see why an aftermarket would make your CEL come on.
    have u tried getting what the trouble code is. dont assume the light came on coz of the aftermarket cat. it could be something else. usually - it's the o2 sensor. with such high mileage on the car, it's very possible that your o2 sensor is gone.

    i suggest you find out what the CEL code is first and go from there.
    the CEL may or may not go away by itself. usually, it wont go away by itself and you need to reset it.

  4. #3
    crv|oc Rank: Silver
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    X2 On The Above

    I don't think that it is wise to automatically assume that the cat converter is causing your check engine light to come on. As jeprox suggested, find out what code you have and get the thing fixed. Also I don't think your dealer told you to get an aftermarket cat conv because they knew it wouldn't work. I am not an admirer of dealers by any means but that just don't sound logical.

    As jeprox suggested you probably have a bad 02 sensor or something else that is a good bit cheaper than the cat converter. Get it checked out either by your dealer or a reputable mechanic and don't assume the worse.

    I am not saying your wrong, but why would your state care if your check engine light is on? Do they do a emission test? If it passes the emissions test, why would they care that the light is on? Although if they don't do an emissions test, that could be a cheap rule they have. Again I am not saying your wrong, but the proof pudding is the emissions test not some light on your dash board.

    Do yourself a favor, quit worring about the catalytic converter. Take the car in and get it checked out. Find out why the light is on rather than assuming that it is the converter. It may be the converter, but there is a multitude of things that can turn on the light. Get it checked out.

    Welcome to the club, and good luck on your problem. Let us know what you find out.
    The Black Pearl . . . 2007 EX, 4WD, 5AT, Nighthawk Black Pearl

    “Being Irish he had an abiding sense of tragedy which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” W. B. Yeats

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

  5. #4
    crv|oc Rank: Member
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    Invest in a Scangauge II - you will be able to read the codes and see exactly what is turning your check engine light on, and also to clear them.
    Mike/10 2WD CR-V LX Opal Sage/05 Pilot EX-L Dark Green/07 Ridgeline RTX Dark Cherry Pearl

  6. #5
    crv|oc Rank: Freshman
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    caitlinmcl,

    I too agree with the others who have posted before, you need to get the code read and then do the research as to what needs to be fixed. If you put a catalytic converter in four years ago did you replace the O2 sensors at the time? A 98 CR-V has two O2 sensors, one that is classical in sense, the rear unit, monitors the catalytic converter, the other, the front is an air / fuel ratio sensor that allows the ECU to adjust the fuel and air as supplied to the vehicle. While you have / had many miles on your V most times catalytic converters don't just stop working (although with very high mileage they can). So get it checked out. Now as far as your statement that you car will automatically fail the emissions portion of a state inspection, you are absolutely correct. The federal government is mandating the use of the OBD II check for 1996 and later vehicles as the pass fail for emissions (note: this is not the requirement yet in all states but it will be soon). This is the best thing that came out of the OBDII standards. Think of it before this system, stick a probe in the exhaust and then try to analyze the exhaust gases???? Sounds simple, but it is not accurate at all. Cars that should pass end up failing, cars that should fail end up passing. So how can you have better emissions than if all systems and sub systems are functioning correctly? Think about this, a new or at least relatively new vehicle with say 12,000 miles on it VS a vehicle with say 200,000 miles on it, they both would put out the same emissions? But in looking at it the OBDII way, the vehicle with 200K miles will not have any better emissions as long as all its emission systems function correctly and continue to do so. So what about an "oil burner" one might ask, well lets face it it would be next to impossible to keep all the emissions systems functioning properly so the OBDII emissions check does work as it should. Well enough of this, hope things work out for you. Russ
    98 V 200K miles

  7. #6
    crv|oc Rank: Member
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    thank you

    Thank You all for your suggestions...I am still young and learning alot about cars,this old crv has taught me alot I do love it!!! I did have my check engine light checked, by Honda and a local auto shop, but I didn't ask what the code was so that is going to be my next step. Both places said it was my catalyctic converter. I have done research, since this is my second year in a row dealing with this...and this is a known problem with the after market part. I live in georgia and I swear it is something with the humidity cause this check engine light comes on every spring. And I know it sounds crazy but the first time this happened I brought it to Honda and they told me it was because it was the after market part and yes originally the guy I was working on this problem at the dealer did suggest going to Midas, I know its hard to believe. That is what has made me so angry because it wasn't logical for Honda to suggest I go to Midas so I can't quite figure out why they did suggest it. Last year when my check engine light came on cause of the catalyctic converter it ended up turning off weeks later and I passed inspection, thats all I really care about is passing inspection. So again thank you for your suggestions and information, greatly appreciated, I am going to find out what exactly the code was read and also about the O2 sensors. I guess what I can take out of this is I am learning even more about cars, which is good information to know!

  8. #7
    crv|oc Rank: Silver
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    Hmmmm!

    You do weave a convoluted tale of unhappiness. Was there any warranty offered by Midas? Possibly not but it may be worth checking into. I doubt Federal mandated warranties would apply to replacements but again it is worth looking into. Failing in that, I think I would look into changing the O2 sensor down from the catalytic converter and going from there. Check to see what it would it cost. If it is relatively inexpensive compared to the price of the converter try it and see what happens. The risk of course is that you put a part on your car that does nothing for the problem.

    The other thing, I wouldn't necessarilly deride your observation on humidity, I could see where high humidity could cause such problems.

    Good luck, I hope some of our more knowledgeable members can help you with this.
    The Black Pearl . . . 2007 EX, 4WD, 5AT, Nighthawk Black Pearl

    “Being Irish he had an abiding sense of tragedy which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” W. B. Yeats

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

  9. #8
    Everything in Moderation Carbuff2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by caitlinmcl View Post
    Both places said it was my catalyctic converter. I have done research, since this is my second year in a row dealing with this...and this is a known problem with the after market part. I live in georgia and I swear it is something with the humidity cause this check engine light comes on every spring.
    Aftermarket Cats are usually much smaller than OE. They may not do as good of a job as the factory systems which are designed by law to last at least 100,000 miles.

    If the code you are getting means "ineffective catalytic converter" by all means get the sensors replaced, but DON'T let anyone put generic sensors on. Should be either Honda brand or Denso. They ain't cheap....

    Also if it's a known problem with the aftermarket part, you should go back to Midas or contact the maker for restitution. But I bet the warranty is no more than 1 year.
    Atwell "Buff" Haines
    '06 AWD CR-V, 5 speed MT!
    '07 Fit Sport, 5 speed MT!
    NJ

    In theory, there is no difference between Theory and Practice. In practice, there is. - Yogi Berra



  10. #9
    crv|oc Rank: Silver
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    not to be bias or anything, but i hate midas, mineky, all of them, i either do it myself, go to my local drag racing shop, or go to my local HONDA dealership to get things done, companys like midas thrive off screwing you into the ground, but thats besides the point, id get it checked, what i did when i had a problem with my cat, i went to advanced auto parts and plugged their computer diagnostic device ( i forget the real name, just tell them that you need to check you check engine light code ) and follow their directions, it will come up on the display the code and what is wrong. you can also delete the codes that are lingering in your computer.

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