catalytic converters

The Best Catalytic Converter Cleaners Review

The catalytic converter is an important part of your exhaust system that helps keep your emissions to a minimum. It kind of looks like a muffler and it’s in your exhaust system in-between the engine and the tailpipe. The exhaust made by the engine goes through the catalytic converter, which actually changes the chemical makeup of the air that goes through it. It takes harmful pollutants like carbon monoxide and turns them into harmless byproducts that exit your tailpipe like nitrogen and even water. Your car turning carbon monoxide into water makes a significant impact on the emissions it makes.

OXICAT - Oxygen Sensor & Catalytic Converter Cleaner - photo 2



For a perfect preventive catalytic converter cleaner, this item is definitely your best bet. This product from a very reputable brand is effective in removing the byproducts and dirt of all kinds from the fuel and exhaust system of the vehicle. Such byproducts include deposits of carbon and soot. The effect of this on the car is increased general performance in the engine. This also ensures a reduction in the emission of harmful substances by the car into the atmosphere. Hence, you are actively involved in the protection of a safe atmosphere. This product assures you of passing every emission test that might be carried out on your vehicle.

It is important to note that an important feature of this item is that for it to work effectively, the car has to reach and sustain the Catalytic Converter’s working temperature. Otherwise, there would be no maximum results for this product. Also, this product should be used as a preventive measure. That is, it is primarily used to prevent the buildup of toxic deposits in the exhaust system of the car. Therefore, when applied to repair an already faulty exhaust system, it would not yield the maximum result.

Cataclean 120007 Complete Engine Exhaust and fuel system cleaner



If a product can be a bestseller, then you can rest assured that it is of great quality. Primarily made to maintain your car’s catalytic converter’s energy, this product further ensures a top level general engine performance. This product also effectively gets rid of carbon deposits and soot, from relevant parts of the vehicle- from the catalytic converter to the cylinder heads of the car. It is as effective as much as reducing the level of carbon emitted into the atmosphere by the car by 50%. This is indeed awesome, as it not only ensures that your car is healthy, but also ensures that the atmosphere in which your vehicle operates is equally healthy.

The Cataclean 120007 can be used not just in a proactive manner. That is, it can be used to fix faults such as power reduction of the engine. It can also be used in a proactive manner, by applying it in the vehicle before any emission test a car needs to undergo.

It would interest you to know that the formula used in the production of this item has been patented. Therefore, you can be sure that you are buying a very unique product, different from every other one in the market.

CRC Guaranteed to Pass formula



A feature this product obviously boasts of is its ability to ensure that your car passes any emission test it might be subject to. Therefore, if you are bothered about not being able to pass an emissions test, then this product is about to be your lifesaver. It specifically contains a very powerful detergent that ensures that when used by a car, all deposit buildup is cleaned up. This would lead to a massive decrease in the emission of harmful substances and a corresponding high fuel and exhaust system performance. In the long run, the engine of your car would be in a very good state. This product, however, is only compatible with gasoline engines. As such, if your engine is a diesel or hybrid engine, and you need to pass the emissions test, then this product is not for you. Also, this product comes in a small bottle of 12 ounces. Therefore, you would need to purchase more than a bottle for consistent effective use.

For a company to assure you of a refund if you do not get your desired result, then you should know that this product is 100% effective.

Hi-Gear HG3270s EZ Emissions Pass and Catalytic Converter Cleaner



This product is one that was carefully manufactured to meet specific needs and its contents make this clear. It contains additives that ensure that fuel efficiency is properly maximized. This also makes sure that hard starts are decreased in the car’s operation and lost acceleration is restored. This product is also efficient in cleaning the whole fuel system components as well as the exhaust system. To achieve this, it contains detergent powerful enough to clean through the fuel system, injectors, pistons, valves and the combustion chambers, getting rid of every toxic substance.

This, in the long run, guarantees a reduction in the emission of harmful substances like carbon monoxide into the atmosphere by the car. It also increases the general performance of the car. An important feature to note here is its incompatible nature with diesel engines. Therefore, if your engine is not a gas engine, then this product is not for you. If your deal is a product that performs and is as effective as it says it is without defaulting, then this product is highly recommended.

Solder-It (CAT-1) Catalytic Converter Cleaner



Not only is this product a catalytic converter cleaner, it also functions as a deodorizer for your vehicle. And this has to be one of the very unique features that make it stand out in the market. So if you are fed up with the incessant bad odor from the exhaust system of your vehicle, this is your best bet. Apart from this, this product maintains a high level of versatility. Although it is compatible with only gasoline engines, it can be used in pelleted catalyst supports as well as monoliths type of catalyst converter.

This item also rids the exhaust system of toxic substances and keeps the system clean. The ability of the product to guarantee that your vehicle passes any emission test is however, not guaranteed by the product. Apart from these, this product also contains harmful chemicals which calls for caution while using it. For maximum protection, it is advisable to put on gloves while using them and keep them from the reach of children as much as possible. Considering all these in addition to the fact that this product is not compatible with diesel engines, it might be correct to say that this product is quite basic. The deodorizer function is the only thing that is outstanding.

MotorPower Care Catalytic Converter Cleaner Oxygen Sensor



This is a product, specially designed by the latest oxygen sensor technology to ensure maximum cleaning of the exhaust system. It works to eradicate every toxic byproduct of combustion like carbon and deposits of soot found in the exhaust system. If used on a regular basis, this product guarantees increased fuel efficiency, increased high engine performance and keeps the catalyst converter working smoothly. An extra feature of this product is that it also cleans the EGR valve as well as the lambda sensor and turbocharger of your car. This is not found in other regular catalytic converter cleaners.

This product serves as both a proactive measure and could play a corrective role. It protects the engine from the heavy harmful residue, and it also removes already existing dirt from a car. The Motor Power Care cleaner is also versatile as it can be used with both gasoline vehicles, diesel engines as well as hybrid vehicles.  In case you are looking for what will put your car in a better condition to pass emission tests, then this is for you.

Mac Auto Parts Sledgehammer Catalytic Converter Fuel System Rapid Induction Deposit Cleaner



If you see the “Sledgehammer” in this product name, and you are wondering why I believe it is a figurative description of the use of this cleaner. It is a very effective two-bottle kit cleaner used for cleaning fuel systems of heavy-duty vehicles. Initially, manufacturers of this product only made it available to professionals. However, it has now been made available for sale to the general public. It comes as a two-step cleaner. For the first step, the first bottle of the product is poured directly into the gas tank, to clean the fuel system. Here, after the bottle is emptied into a half-filled gas tank, for efficiency, you are required to start up your engine and keep it in idle mode. The second step requires that the second bottle, which contains the Rapid Induction Deposit Cleaner (RID) is connected to a vacuum line inside the car’s engine section.

The results of these two-step cleaning are effective and maximum removal of carbon deposits as well as other kinds of deposits in the fuel and exhaust systems of the car. No part would be left out, from the combustion chambers to the valves and oxygen sensors.

Why Use a Catalytic Converter Cleaner?

Catalytic converters can clog up and lose their effectiveness over the years and using a catalytic converter cleaner regularly can go a long way in extending the life of this important component. Most drivers can go their whole lives without ever needing to touch their catalytic converter. It’s an often forgotten and underappreciated part of your car that is crucial for reducing emissions and keeping your car running smoothly.

Many catalytic converter cleaners are treatments for your whole fuel system meaning it can keep the other internals of your engine clean like the fuel injectors. Keeping the whole engine clean and running the way it’s supposed to is another nice perk of regularly using these treatments.

If you live somewhere that requires emissions tests to keep your car on the road legally, then a catalytic converter cleaner can help you to pass those tests with flying colors. Some older cars have a hard time passing those tests, but using a catalytic converter cleaner regularly can help to keep old cars on the road longer while running like new.

Clogged Catalytic Converter Symptoms

There are a few signs that your catalytic converter might be getting clogged up and needs a good cleaning. If you’ve noticed your engine performance has been lacking with worse acceleration, this could be a sign that your catalytic converter or parts of your fuel system have carbon buildup that needs to be cleared out. Another sign that you may have some clogging in your catalytic converter is reduced fuel economy, which can be restored with a catalytic converter cleaner. Have you noticed a bad smell coming from your car’s exhaust? This could be the result of excessive carbon buildup inside your catalytic converter that needs to be cleaned. When you or your mechanic check error codes, the OBD2 codes like 0430 directly appoints on the catalyst system malfunction.

Regularly using catalytic converter not only takes care of these problems, but it helps to prevent them from happening again.

How Do Catalytic Converter Cleaners Work?

The process of your catalytic converter turning harmful gasses like carbon monoxide into less harmful byproducts like water is a dirty process. Harmful chemicals come out of the engine, enter your exhaust system, and go through the core of the catalytic converter, which produces harmless chemicals that come out of your tailpipe. This process causes carbon buildup inside the catalytic converter that can reduce its effectiveness over time. A clogged catalytic converter doesn’t mean anything is wrong with your engine, it just means that it has been working and needs some routine maintenance.

A catalytic converter cleaner is a specially formulated liquid that starts in your fuel tank and goes all the way through your exhaust breaking down that carbon buildup and getting it out through the tailpipe. Less carbon buildup means a more effective catalytic converter that can last longer. The result is restored engine performance, improved fuel economy, and even lower maintenance costs over the car’s life since you won’t have to replace the catalytic converter as often.

Catalytic Converter Cleaner Buyer’s Guide

There are a few important things to consider when shopping for a catalytic converter cleaner for your vehicle. Which brand should you get? How much should you pay? How do you know it’s safe to use in your vehicle? We’ll cover all of those questions in this buyer’s guide.

  • System compatibility. One of the most important things to do when shopping for a catalytic converter cleaner is to make sure it’s safe to use in your car, truck, SUV, motorcycle, or whatever vehicle you’re using it in. If you have a conventional, gas-powered car, then pretty much all of them will work just fine unless the label clearly states otherwise. However, if you drive something a little more specialized like a hybrid or a diesel, then you need to double-check on the label of the product you’re thinking about getting to make sure it’s safe to use in your engine. There are specialty products that are specifically designed for certain types of engines like diesel engines which you may want to consider using if that applies to your vehicle.
  • Container sizes. In most cases, you can use the whole bottle of catalytic converter cleaner with a full tank of fuel. If the bottle is 20 oz or smaller, it’s probably safe to do just that unless the label says otherwise. Some catalytic converter cleaners can be bought in bulk which means you’re paying less per ounce, but it requires measuring it out and using a funnel every time you want to use it.
  • Brand. Each brand of catalytic converter cleaner has its own special formula. Some are specifically for cleaning the catalytic converter while others are intended to treat your whole fuel system plus the catalytic converter. If you go with any of the trusted brands in this industry like Chevron, Royal Purple, or Red Line, you’ll be getting a quality product. See also: Best Fuel System Cleaners
  • Price. Most catalytic converter cleaners are priced around the $20 USD mark or less. Those prices can go up if you’re shopping for a bulk-sized product or a pack of multiple bottles. Some of the more value-oriented products are less than $10 USD and are still perfectly safe to use in your engine as long as it’s compatible with your car
  • Where to buy. Catalytic converter cleaners can be found at your favorite online retailer, auto parts stores, and even department stores with automotive departments. If you want to ask a professional in person if a certain product is right for you, you can get expert advice from an auto parts store.


It depends on how clogged it is. A catalytic converter with a lot of miles on it that has never been cleaned might have clogs that are too significant to be cleaned with anything you can pour in your fuel tank. If that’s the case, then a catalytic converter cleaner won’t do much good and the part will need to be replaced. However, if you don’t have severe clogs, then catalytic converter cleaner can be used to clear out mild to moderate buildup and help prevent significant clogs in the future.

Simply pick up a catalytic converter cleaner or a complete fuel system treatment online or at your local auto parts store. Make sure it’s safe to use in your engine, pour the correct amount (usually the whole bottle) into your fuel tank along with a full tank of fuel, and drive your car normally while the catalytic converter cleaner does all of the work. Using approximately one ounce of catalytic converter cleaner per gallon of fuel is a good ratio for cleaning out your system. For example, if your fuel tank is about 20 gallons, then a whole 20 oz bottle of catalytic converter cleaner would be perfect.Adding catalytic converter cleaner

While they can’t unclog severe buildup and they’re no replacement for a full catalytic converter replacement, catalytic converter cleaners are great for clearing out small to moderate amounts of carbon buildup and preventing future clogs. Using a catalytic converter cleaner regularly can extend the life of this important part, keep your emissions down, and restore lost performance and fuel economy.

It depends on what the label of the specific product you’re using says, but it’s a good rule of thumb to use a catalytic converter every 4,000 miles or so. Some products don’t have a recommendation on how many miles to go between using them, but rather a certain period of time like every three months. A good way to remember to use it regularly is to pick up a bottle and pour it in your fuel tank with every oil change.

Yes, assuming the product you’re using is compatible with your engine and you use the right amount. If you have a hybrid or diesel engine, you may want to use a product that is specifically formulated for those types of engines. If you’re using a general-purpose catalytic converter cleaner, check the label to make sure it’s safe to use on your type of engine. As for quantity, you’ll want to use about one ounce of catalytic converter cleaner per gallon of fuel you’re treating. It doesn’t hurt anything to use less than that, but using much more than that can create an unfavorable ratio of cleaner to fuel. It’s always best to check the label of the specific product you’re using to make sure you’re using the right quantity.

We do an efforts to find, research and recommend the best products. So, we may receive commissions from purchases that you make after following the links in our product reviews.