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How K9 Teams Are Used to Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft

Published December 15th, 2022 by 3DK9 LLC

Catalytic converter theft is on the rise in the US. In 2018, there were only 1,298 catalytic converter thefts reported. The number of reports jumped to an incredible 14,433 in 2020, an increase of more than 1,000% in only two years.

In 2022, the number of catalytic converter thefts has increased even further. And unfortunately, victims of these crimes must pay high costs for new catalytic converters if they want to get back on the road.

If you have been a victim of one of these crimes, you may feel helpless. But what you may not know is that a highly-trained K9 team can help recover stolen catalytic converters, saving you countless dollars and time.

But by now, you may be wondering: how do K9 security dogs help recover stolen converters? And where can you find K9 detection dogs to help recover your stolen items? We will answer these questions and more in this guide.

What is a Catalytic Converter?

Catalytic converters are key components of your car's quality control system. And while your car may still work without it, the loss of your catalytic converter can damage your vehicle and the environment in the long run.

What is more, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) makes it illegal to drive without a catalytic converter. In the US, it is illegal in all states and territories to drive without this critical piece of tech.

That is because these pieces of technology help "detox" your car's exhaust emissions. Catalytic converters chemically transform toxins and pollutants from engine exhaust into less-toxic compounds.

Most newer cars made after the 1970s have catalytic converters. Of course, the exception is battery-powered vehicles. Because electric cars do not have engines, they do not require catalytic converters.

Why Would Someone Want to Steal a Catalytic Converter?

Catalytic converters are expensive pieces of technology. That is because manufacturers use rare earth metals to construct them. This includes metals like palladium, rhodium, and platinum.

These rare metals can go for a high price on the black market. What is more, Russia is a primary producer of these metals. The war in Ukraine has impacted the production and distribution of these metals, driving prices even higher.

As we mentioned, catalytic converters come with almost every vehicle on the road today. That makes these pieces of car technology widely available for criminals looking to make a quick buck.

Which Vehicles Do Catalytic Converter Thieves Target?

According to experts, cars with two catalytic converters are more likely to become victims of theft than cars with one converter. Energy-efficient vehicles and hybrid cars most commonly have two catalytic converters.

More specifically, there are some car models that are more likely to become targets than others. This has to do with a number of factors. For example, a vehicle that sits higher off the ground is easier to rob of its converter(s).

The following vehicles are top targets for catalytic converter theft in 2022:

  • Any Ford F-Series made after 1985
  • Any Honda Accord model made after 1989
  • Any Jeep Patriot made between 2007 and 2017
  • Any Ford Econoline made after 1990
  • Any Chevy Silverado made after 1999
  • Any Chevy Equinox made after 2005
  • Any Honda CR-V made between 1997 and 2020
  • Any Toyota Camry made between 1987 and 2019
  • Any Chrysler 200 made between 2011 and 2017
  • Any Toyota Prius made after 2001

Catalytic converter theft is a crime of opportunity. That means that thieves will target virtually any vehicle. Just because your car is not listed above does not mean you could not become a victim of catalytic converter theft.

How Much Can Catalytic Converter Theft Cost You?

First and foremost, you will not be able to drive your vehicle without its catalytic converter. The loss of your vehicle, then, is one of the most significant costs of this type of theft.

Insurance may help you with the cost of replacing your converter. But you must have full coverage. Without a full coverage auto insurance policy, you may have to pay completely out of pocket.

In 2022, a catalytic converter costs $1,000 on the low end. On the high end, you may have to pay $3,000 or even more to get your catalytic converter replaced in 2022.

How Can Sniffer Dogs Help Recover Stolen Catalytic Converters?

Did you know that specialized K9 units can sniff out electronics and other pieces of technology? This fact may surprise you. After all, most of us only think of K9s in terms of their narcotics detection skills.

For instance, a police-trained detection dog helped recover multiple stolen catalytic converters in New York earlier this year. Other news sites have reported on new training programs that teach dogs to sniff out electronics.

In the case of catalytic converters, K9s can be trained to sniff out the rare metals inside them.

How Can K9s Help Prevent Catalytic Converter Theft?

The best way to decrease the country's rate of catalytic converter theft is to prevent it from happening. That is where a K9 unit comes in.

At 3DK9, We provide additional layers of security far more effective than a standalone guard, which has eliminated theft from our clients. Our 3DK9 guard dogs can help prevent theft, whether you need a guard dog for your business, home, or event.

Do You Need 3DK9?

Catalytic converter theft is an increasingly worrisome problem in the US. Luckily, when you work with 3DK9, we can help you prevent converter crimes altogether.

Are you searching for security dogs for your workplace, private residence, or upcoming event? We serve customers nationwide. Contact us today to find out how our trained K9 unit can help you.

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