How to Find Catalytic Converter Scrap Value By Serial Number

Have you recently replaced your car’s catalytic converter and wondering how much it could be worth as scrap? Or are you planning to sell or recycle old catalytic converters for cash and want to know the value based on their serial numbers? You’re in the right place! In this blog, we will discuss everything you need to know about finding the catalytic converter scrap value by serial number. We’ll cover topics such as what a catalytic converter is, where to find its serial number, how long it is, and how to look up its scrap value online. Additionally, we’ll also share tips on preparing your catalytic converter for scrap and factors that affect its value. So sit tight and read on to discover more!

What is a Catalytic Converter? What does it do?

A catalytic converter is a device that helps reduce toxic pollutants from a vehicle’s exhaust by converting harmful gases into less harmful substances. It is located in the exhaust system and is mandated by law in most states to mitigate air pollution caused by vehicles. It helped many car companies meet the requirements of the National Emissions Standards Act.

Where to find the catalytic converter serial number?

To locate the serial number of your catalytic converter, check the metal casing for a series of engraved or stamped letters and numbers. You can also refer to your vehicle’s original paperwork or seek guidance from a mechanic. Online resources may provide specific instructions for your car model.

Where to find the catalytic converter serial number?

To find the catalytic converter serial number, check for a metal plate or etched markings on the casing. Newer models may have it engraved inside. If you’re unable to locate it, refer to your vehicle manual or seek assistance from a professional mechanic.

How long is a serial number of a catalytic converter?

The length of a catalytic converter’s serial number varies by manufacturer, ranging from 6 to 17 digits. It is usually engraved or stamped and crucial for determining scrap value.

How to look up the Catalytic converter scrap value by serial number?

Catalytic Converter

To check the scrap value of your catalytic converter using its serial number, use online databases or inquire with local scrap yards and metal recyclers. The value can vary based on vehicle make and model, so comparing prices from multiple sources is crucial for getting the best deal.

1. Find the Serial Number

Once you have located the catalytic converter, look for any engraved or stamped markings on its surface. The serial number is often etched onto a metal plate or directly onto the casing of the converter. It may be a combination of letters, numbers, or a combination of both. Carefully examine the converter from various angles and use a flashlight if necessary to improve visibility. If you are having trouble locating the serial number visually, you can also try running your fingers along the surface to feel for any embossed or raised markings. Keep in mind that the serial number may vary in size and placement depending on the manufacturer and model of the catalytic converter.

2. Use Online Platform/App

Finding the scrap value of a catalytic converter through its serial number requires some research. While there’s no direct way to do this through an online database or app specifically designed for it. The most convenient tools available are Ecotrade’s converter price software, also known as Eco Cat, and ConverterDatabase. These resources make it easy to find the necessary information. Both Eco Cat and ConverterDatabase provide a comprehensive database of catalytic converter prices, allowing users to quickly access the current market values. By utilizing these tools, users can save time and effort when searching for specific converter prices. Whether you are a scrapyard owner, a car enthusiast, or anyone else looking to determine the value of a catalytic converter, Eco Cat and ConverterDatabase are reliable and user-friendly options.

3. Look Up Value with Picture

If you encounter difficulties obtaining the serial number or simply prefer a more convenient approach, you can utilize the option of capturing a picture with a dedicated app. Eco Cat provides this feature, allowing you to snap a photo of the catalytic converter for further analysis. By using this method, you can bypass the hassle of manually locating and recording the serial number. The app will enable you to extract relevant information and determine the value of the catalytic converter based on the image captured. This approach streamlines the process and offers a user-friendly alternative for those seeking to evaluate converter value. To begin using the app, you can download it from either the Apple App Store or Google Play. After installing the app on your mobile device, you can proceed to upload the photo of the catalytic converter. Once the photo is successfully uploaded, the app will swiftly generate a quote indicating the value of the converter. This convenient process ensures a prompt and efficient evaluation of the converter’s worth based on the provided image. Whether you are using an iOS or Android device, the app is readily accessible and offers a seamless experience for obtaining a quick quote on the value of your catalytic converter.

Serial Number Location in Different Vehicles

Catalytic converters’ serial number locations differ based on the vehicle’s make and model from each automaker. The serial code is typically a combination of letters and digits. Check the body or sticker attached to your catalytic converter to find your converter’s serial number location. Keep in mind that your car can have multiple catalytic converters; hence it’s worth checking them all. To determine your precious metals containing catalyst’s worth by its serial number—try online databases or research from local scrap yards.


In Ford vehicles, the serial numbers on catalytic converters are typically engraved or stamped onto the outer casing of the converter. The appearance of the characters may vary, but they are commonly alphanumeric. The length of Ford catalytic converter serial numbers can range from 9–14 characters.


Hyundai vehicles usually have their catalytic converter serial numbers imprinted on the outer casing. The numbers are often alphanumeric, and their appearance can differ based on the specific model and manufacturing year. The length of Hyundai catalytic converter serial numbers can vary between 3 and 10 characters.


In Toyota vehicles, the serial number is commonly engraved or stamped onto the catalytic converter’s housing. The location can differ depending on the model and design of the converter. Look for the number on the converter’s outer surface or near the connections to the exhaust system. Toyota catalytic converter serial numbers typically range from 5 characters in length.

General Motors

General Motors, which includes brands like Chevrolet, GMC, Buick, and Cadillac, often has the serial numbers on catalytic converters stamped onto the converter housing. In the majority of cases, the serial code on the plate will display eight numbers. In some cases, the serial number on a General Motors (GM) catalytic converter may consist of just a few numbers, preceded by the letters “GM.” For example, it could appear as “GM 774.”


Subaru’s catalytic converters are commonly found as two units located on the downpipe. When dismantling a Subaru’s catalytic converter, you’ll observe that these vehicles typically feature two converters. The first converter is more compact in size, while the second one takes on a bean-like shape. On one of the corners of the converter’s body, you will discover a stamped number. This serial number, usually listed in five characters, appears as “FGCY5 4827 SK.”


Despite Honda’s strong brand reputation and market value, their catalytic converter technology falls short in terms of quality and effectiveness. Unlike many other brands, only a limited number of Honda catalytic converters have stamped identification numbers, leaving the majority without such markings. This lack of stamped numbers poses challenges for scrappers, as it complicates their understanding of the converters and adds an additional layer of complexity to the process. Additionally, Honda catalytic converters only display a limited quantity of printed numbers, further contributing to the overall intricacy of the situation.


Volkswagen employs a distinctive labeling approach for their catalytic converters. Typically, the serial numbers consist of a combination of nine numbers and one to three letters, with each element separated by spaces. For instance, a Volkswagen catalytic converter serial number could be displayed as 973 627 710 G. Alternatively, it may appear as a mixed sequence, such as 3K9 345 710 G. This format allows for unique identification and tracking of the catalytic converters associated with Volkswagen vehicles.

Aftermarket Cats

By opting for an aftermarket exhaust installation, you can significantly enhance the airflow and overall performance of your vehicle. It is important to note that the new catalytic converter accompanying the aftermarket exhaust may have a distinct labeling system in place. While it should ideally feature a serial number, it is unlikely to adhere to the conventional guidelines followed by most original equipment manufacturer (OEM) catalytic converters.

What Affects Catalytic Converter Value?

Several factors influence the value of a catalytic converter, including the vehicle’s make and model, the converter’s age and condition, and the amount of precious metals it contains, such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium. The current market demand for these metals also plays a role in determining its scrap value.

Preparing Your Catalytic Converter for Scrap

1. Cut Off Exhaust Pipes

When you’re looking to scrap your catalytic converter, one of the first steps is to prepare it for removal. One of the best ways to do this is by cutting off the exhaust pipes. By doing so, you’ll have better access and visibility when removing the converter from your vehicle. Remember to use protective gear while doing so.

2. Leave the Honeycomb In

To get the best value for your catalytic converter, it is crucial to leave the honeycomb in before taking it for scrap. The honeycomb contains precious metals such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium, which make it a valuable asset. Removing the honeycomb can be challenging and might result in damage to the converter, thereby decreasing its worth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do thieves steal catalytic converters from cars?

Catalytic converters are stolen by thieves due to the presence of precious metals like platinum, palladium, and rhodium that have a high demand in the black market. Additionally, some thieves find them easy to remove from vehicles. These thefts can be costly for car owners who need to replace them.

How many serial numbers are on a catalytic converter?

Catalytic converters usually have a single serial number that is either stamped or engraved on its surface. It is essential to keep track of this number for scrap value purposes, and some scrapyards may require proof of ownership and matching serial numbers before purchasing the converter.

How long is a serial number of a catalytic converter?

The length of a catalytic converter’s serial number is not standardized and varies by manufacturer, ranging from 6 to 17 digits. It can be found on the shell and is useful in determining its scrap value.


In conclusion, finding the scrap value of your catalytic converter is a straightforward process. Knowing what to look for and where to find it will help you get the most value out of your scrap. Keep in mind that various factors can impact the value, including location, age, and condition of the converter. Always be sure to prepare your catalytic converter for scrap by cutting off exhaust pipes and leaving the honeycomb in place. To learn more about how to find the scrap value of your catalytic converter by serial number and get the best price for your scrap, refer to our comprehensive blog on this topic.