Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Catalytic converter now won't start

asked by on

I have a Pontiac 2004 grand am. One day the catlitic converter was glowing red hot, so someone from auto zone said it was clogged to cut it off, my husband done that and put a straight pipe and some clamps on it. After that i test drove it and it seemed like it took a while for it to start picking up speed, blue smoke was coming from the tail pipe. I drive it to my dads scared to drive it any further afraid I was going to mess it up worse. I asked around and tried to get people to check it out and they all said they couldn't find a reason that it was doing that. I went to start the car one day and it wouldn't start, or make any sound like it was trying to start. I need help I'm 8 months pregnant and really need my vehicale fixed. Thanks so much for your time.

My car has 153000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi there. The fact that the catalytic conve...

Hi there. The fact that the catalytic converter was glowing red hot does not mean it was bad. Removing the converter completely can sometimes cause more issues with the car, as it effects the sensor readings. The fact that the vehicle is running the way that you described and that the converter was glowing red tells me that the car was either running lean or rich. Most of the time this is a lean condition, which means too little fuel is being delivered to the engine. This is usually caused by a weak fuel pump.

In a case like this, I first check the computer for codes and check the fuel trim readings. I then check the fuel pressure. If that is fine then it may be a sensor problem. If you would like to have this looked at, consider YourMechanic, as a certified mechanic can come to your home or office to diagnose why your vehicle isn't starting.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: My car will turn over but will not start.

If the car is "flooding" (getting too much fuel), there can be a number of causes. The fuel pressure regulator may have failed, or is not getting the proper vacuum signal. A failed coolant temperature sensor can cause a rich...

Q: Steering wheel vibrating at highway speeds

The suspension on the right side may have strut problems or bearing along with ball joints. If one or more items are bad then both sides and the rest of the suspension should be checked for problems. I recommend you...

Q: question

Chime noises, or any alarms for that matter, that just occur out of nowhere represent electrical faults that would have to be traced during an electrical components diagnostic. The only "connection" between the chime going off when the accelerator pedal...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P0240 OBD-II Trouble Code: Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance
P0240 code definition Turbocharger Boost Sensor B Circuit Range/Performance What the P0240 code means P0240 is an OBD-II generic code triggered when the Engine Control Module (ECM) detects the intake boost...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...