WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Catalytic-converter thieves strike again

Reader report:

Our Prius was vandalized this week. It was sitting on the street (Hill Street SW, North Admiral). We found it still jacked up with the catalytic converter missing. We read an article online that said catalytic converter theft has become popular because of their value, relative ease to steal, and their lack of identifying marketings. Metal recyclers will pay an average of $50 per converter for the precious metals inside them. Unfortunately our estimate to repair is $1,799.

This is the sixth reader report we’ve received this summer about catalytic-converter thefts, and others have been noted in those stories’ comments.

22 Replies to "WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Catalytic-converter thieves strike again"

  • Graciano September 17, 2020 (6:16 pm)
    Prius convertors are with $200 – $1000 depending on the year of the car, they contain Palladium, which is worth $2261 per ounce. 
  • LuLuBelle September 17, 2020 (6:40 pm)

    Because nobody is demanding the recyclers be held accountable for verifying where the sellers got the goods these thefts will NEVER stop.

    • Hammer in Hand September 18, 2020 (6:43 am)

      How does the recycler know it is not legit? He is in the business of recyclingnot in their investigation of wher they may have come from.thief is a crime, investigated by policewho we now have 100 fewer ofyou cannot have it both ways

  • EV Guy September 17, 2020 (7:39 pm)

    Just drive electric. Your insurance company and the environment will thank you. 

    • John September 18, 2020 (5:34 am)

      Not everyone can afford an expensive new car

    • Bill September 18, 2020 (6:10 am)

      Yes! — That magic electricity that just comes out of the wall!

    • Stripe September 18, 2020 (8:26 am)

      Don’t forget to bring your bootstraps that you can pull yourself by with you as well!Let’s also not forget anti-competitive and anti-repair practices of Tesla where you no longer own the car you just sold your kidneys for, but instead you buy a never-ending subscription for the privilege to drive it to your destination.

    • Science27 September 18, 2020 (9:54 am)

      Coal powered cars

    • evdriver September 18, 2020 (10:09 am)

      Ha!  My insurance went up when I switched to an EV.

  • Scott September 17, 2020 (7:48 pm)

    Seattle Dive Tours had our entire exhaust removed from our Sprinter van around May.  $5,000.  Not easy costs to absorb for small businesses, especially during pandemic closures.

    • jonathan vogel September 17, 2020 (9:33 pm)

      oh gee… that is a huge hit~!!!

  • jonathan vogel September 17, 2020 (9:35 pm)

    Time for people to shell out some money to protect the cars. We know the thievery won’t stop. So get this protective device

  • Carole September 17, 2020 (10:22 pm)

    I second that.  Get the catsecurity device (about 170) and have it riveted over the converter by the dealership.  Just Google catsecurity.  Get the right model for your car. It’s worth it.A replacement converter can cost anywhere from 1800-2300. Plus the labor.  You will likely need to replace the 02 sensor as well.My dealership provided me a loaner. They estimated it would take a few weeks to get the replacement parts but it took only a week.

  • Elon Tusk September 17, 2020 (10:39 pm)

    https://www.tesla.com/ problem solved

    • John September 18, 2020 (5:35 am)

      I’ve been intrigued by the Teslas but not everyone can afford an expensive new car especially coming from a company that hasn’t turned a profit and there’s the possibility they could go the way of the DeLorean

      • rpo September 18, 2020 (8:24 am)

        They’ve been profitable for over a year now and are one of the most valuable companies in America.

  • Flivver September 18, 2020 (6:40 am)

    ev guy;elon tusk. If the power is out how do you recharge your electric car. Just wondering

    • rpo September 18, 2020 (8:24 am)

      How do you get gas if the power is out at the gas station?

      • Question Authority September 18, 2020 (12:57 pm)

        You get a hand powered pump and you source it from a tank, making your own electricity is a bit more problematic.

        • Whatisaid September 19, 2020 (11:20 am)

          I think making your own gas may be harder than making your own electricity 

  • helpermonkey September 18, 2020 (9:57 am)

    the problem is the recyclers buying these. they need to be held accountable. you can defend them and say they’re “just doing their job”, but when a guy comes in with a couple of converters you don’t think that’s maybe just a little suspicious? Bottom line is, they’re just like a pawn shop – in the business of fencing stolen goods. 

    • 1994 September 18, 2020 (9:05 pm)

      The recycler businesses should request to see WA State Driver’s license or ID card and take a photo copy of it….. Many of these thieves  may not have an ID on them. Or they may not want a copy taken. No ID, no cash for your product. 

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