10 Best Catalytic Converters of 2021

Jerry Wilson
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If you have a car, then you’ve probably noticed that a lot of fuel you put in your tank often doesn’t all seem to make it to the end of your drive. This wasted fuel goes to heat up your car’s engine and exhaust while reducing your car’s fuel economy.

This is because a catalytic converter is usually built into your car’s exhaust system and it’s main purpose is to reduce emissions. Yet, most catalytic converters don’t work as well as they should because they are dirty! Over time, carbon deposits mix with pollutants floating around in the atmosphere and continue to build up on the catalytic converter, reducing its effectiveness and leading to poor fuel economy.

While you can’t remove the catalytic converter for good, you can regularly use chemical cleaners to remove carbon deposits. This will restore your catalytic converter’s efficiency while reducing your fuel costs.

It is important to use the best catalytic converter cleaner for your car and that’s what I’ve covered below.

NameCategoryProduct
Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic ConverterBest OverallWalker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic Converter
AUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic ConverterBudget PickAUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic Converter
EvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic ConverterUpgrade PickEvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic Converter

1. Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 9 / 10

Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • High-quality build
  • Well-priced

Cons:

  • Rating as slightly small
  • No bolt thread seal included

This catalytic converter is made by Walker Exhaust. It’s a mid-range manufacturer, but its products are always of high quality. Walker sells parts for many different vehicles, including Harley Davidson, Ford, Jeep, Chevrolet, GMC, Ram, Jeep, Nissan, Honda, Pontiac, Saturn, Mazda, Toyota, and more.

One of the products they’re best known for is their mid-range catalytic converters, which are designed to convert harmful gases like nitrogen oxides (NOx) and various hydrocarbons to carbon dioxide and water. The products they manufacture is always up-to-date with environmental standards.

The catalytic converter kit for Dodge trucks comes packed with everything you need to install the unit. This includes a new clamp, bolts, and a bolt with thread seal, and of course a couple of instructions.

2. Eastern 70318 Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 9 / 10

Eastern 70318 Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Made in the USA
  • More effective than most catalytic converters
  • Decent price

The Eastern 70318 Catalytic Converter isn’t compliant with the CARB standards, but it’s one of the more effective catalytic converters like the Eastern. This is something you’ll have to deal with if you need to deal with the state’s regulations. However, if you’re looking for effectiveness over everything else, then this should be on your list.

This converter is 30% more effective than its most popular competitor, the Bosal SP04. In addition, this model has a higher conversion efficiency rate. It has been tested many times over by both experts and independent testers.

However, that doesn’t mean this product is completely flawless. First of all, it’s overpriced compared to the Bosal SP04. Many people are already claiming that this model is overpriced. In addition, it’s only effective when it comes to light emissions.

3. Walker Exhaust Ultra EPA Catalytic Converter 16373 Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 8 / 10

Walker Exhaust Ultra EPA Catalytic Converter 16373 Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Dense ceramic honeycomb riror
  • Full canister inlet and outlet with dual ribbed design
  • Full floating catalytic support mass
  • OEM pipe connection

The Walker Exhaust Ultra EPA catalytic converter with integrated exhaust manifold is an OEM-style replacement converter that’s been specially designed for passenger vehicles. It’s made from microfine, dense ceramic honeycomb ceramic technology and includes a full canister inlet and outlet as well as full floating catalytic support mass with OEM pipe connection.

This ultra-efficient converter is an ideal choice for anyone looking to replace their factory unit.

4. MagnaFlow 99356HM Universal Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 8 / 10

MagnaFlow 99356HM Universal Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Substantial weight reduction
  • Reduces backpressure
  • Quieter than stock
  • Improved efficiency
  • Cooler running temperatures

Cons:

  • Rough start and sputtering exhausts
  • Not CARB approved

The MagnaFlow Universal Catalytic converter for aftermarket applications is a direct, bolt in replacement for OEM converters. It features a streamlined body design with a ground breaking technology that makes this catalytic converter up to 3 times more effective than stock converters.

This converter is manufactured with a high temperature aluminized steel shell that makes it extremely durable. It also has a ceramic coating that resists contaminants, making it easier to clean and maintain.

The technology in this converter is patented and proven to reduce backpressure and improve efficiency up to 5 times greater than the OEM catalytic converters. This helps to improve power, fuel efficiency, and removes harmful byproducts of emission. It’s also eco friendly as it won’t give off harmful emissions.

5. AUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 8 / 10

AUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Good for standard vehicles
  • Easy to install
  • Economical

Cons:

  • Only for standard vehicles
  • Not suitable for tuned vehicles

The AutoSave88 cat is the 2.5" universal inlet/outlet design and although it's only for standard vehicles is cheap and easy to install. The construction is a 2-piece stainless steel converter with OE-style inlet inlet/transverse outlet. The design of the converter is the best solution for removing unwanted emissions of all kinds.

This specific converter was designed to meet the EPA's new regulations, which was passed in June of 2010. These new EPA regulations demanded that vehicles get 4-10 more miles per gallon of gas. Along with this, the regulations required that all after-market converters pass through a very strict test.

The test requires that the converter remove all pollutants within the exhaust within 17% accuracy rate. As a result of the new regulations, the amount of converters that could pass this test was reduced to just a handful.

6. Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15039 Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 8 / 10

Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15039 Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Made in the USA
  • Great customer service
  • Competitive pricing
  • Flexible return policy based on item value

Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15039 Catalytic Converter 3 5500Catalytic Converter is an excellent choice for anyone looking to upgrade their vehicle, as this converter is precision machined in the United States by machinists with decades of experience. It’s designed to fit a variety of vehicles, including older cars and trucks that need a replacement exhaust system.

In general, this is a good catalytic converter because it’s been designed to tolerate abnormal wear well. One other important thing to note is that it’s manufactured in compliance with all applicable EPA regulations and standards.

This converter is available in a variety of models and you can easily find one that fits your car from the options on the website. Finally, this Walker exhaust converter can be returned within 30 days if it turns out not to be what you were looking for.

7. Catalytic Converter Compatible

Our rating: 8 / 10

Catalytic Converter Compatible

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Pros:

  • Works as effectively as factory replacement
  • Doesn’t add excessive weight or dynamics
  • Easy to install
  • Affordable price

8. EvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 7 / 10

EvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Coated in MIG welding brazing
  • Helps reduce weight by 10%

Cons:

  • Probably not readily available
  • Not a direct OEM fitment

The EvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic Converter with Heat Shielding is my top pick as it’s an all-around exceptional product that has the ability to help improve performance and meet emission standards.

First off Evan Fischer is a brand name you can trust. For over 100 years, this company has been innovating the way OEM catalytic converters are made and the products they offer to you.

The EvanFischer catalytic converter is a direct OEM fit for you Ford Mustang V8. Made with use of original factory gauges and templates, these products are made to last and offer performance just like the OEMs do. Other benefits include use of high-quality materials, unique features, and incredible performance gains.

9. MagnaFlow 59959 Universal Catalytic Converter

Our rating: 7 / 10

MagnaFlow 59959 Universal Catalytic Converter

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Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Quality materials
  • High performance

Cons:

  • Higher price
  • Not CARB compliant

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best catalytic converter brand?

We are not going to be looking at the brand of catalytic converter you should purchase. Instead we are going to focus on how to choose one. Using this method you should be able to get a high quality product, manufactured by one of the best known brands.

The only time a brand might matter is if you are replacing one of the factory brands that came with your car or truck. You should recheck your vehicle’s manufacturer documentation to ensure that the model you choose is the same as or one that is compatible with the factory brand.

What are the best aftermarket catalytic converters?

With the growing number of environmentally-conscious drivers purchasing vehicles that produce less emissions, there has also been more demand for aftermarket catalytic converters.

Catalytic converters are used on cars to help reduce exhaust emissions. Before catalytic converters came along, engines produced significantly more emissions, and drivers would either choke on the smokey exhaust while driving, or they would turn off their engines while car was stopped (which was a big problem if the driver needed to quickly restart the engine for an emergency maneuver).

Today, it is not quite as common for a new vehicle to come from the dealer with a catalytic converter, since all vehicles are required to pass emissions tests even without the added device. In fact, some vehicles produced between the early 1980s and mid 1990s, and still have catalytic converters…even though those vehicles were produced within the past 20 years.

Are universal catalytic converters any good?

Generally, the better made catalytic converters are designed to work on all types of engines. Even the generic ones are pretty good. However, the problem is that it's not easy to tell which is better than others. This is because the generic converters use the same technology, but their parts are made of lower quality materials. For instance, the metal materials might be thinner or thinner thus easier to break. Fewer exposed holes can affect the performance also. The term "hole" is used to refer to the empty spaces where the catalytic reaction takes place.

The bottom line is that a generic brand converter will get the job done just as well as a name brand item. If you are on a tight budget, getting a generic one is probably your best bet.

What are high flow catalytic converters?

High flow catalytic converters are designed to reduce emission levels from your car without compromising power. High flow converters do this by using a large basket of precious metal media. They also have a high oxidation catalyst and are often coated with a precious metal catalyst bed that is shaped like a honeycomb. These features allow for an extremely effective method of reducing emissions. The downside of this design is that high flows tend to have a shorter lifespan. High flows are not as efficient at filtering out pollutants, which means gases like CO are not removed as well. Increased CO can easily lead to increased emissions and increased fuel consumption.

Conclusion

There are a variety of different reasons as to why you would want to replace your catalytic convertor. Perhaps it’s worn out and not doing its job properly, or maybe you want to customize your vehicle for a specific type of driving. Whatever your reason is, one thing is for sure, it’s a lot more complicated than it might seem at first glance. You don’t just pick a new one up at your local shop. Catalytic convertors are too complex for that. They are made with high-tech ceramic tiles that need to be replaced in the proper order.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Walker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic ConverterBest OverallWalker Exhaust Standard EPA Catalytic Converter 15642 Catalytic Converter
AUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic ConverterBudget PickAUTOSAVER88 ATCC0006 2.5" Inlet/Outlet Universal Catalytic Converter
EvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic ConverterUpgrade PickEvanFischer REPG960301 Silver Powder-Coated Catalytic Converter