So, you have an emissions test failed, and, on top of that, your check engine light has come on for an emissions problem or a catalytic converter problem. Well, not many people think about them, but your catalytic converter is more than probably wherein your problem lies. Your catalytic converter on your car is what gets rid of your emissions by causing a chemical reaction with your exhaust and some precious metals that lie inside of the converter. As the exhaust passes through the honeycomb shaped metals, they convert a lot of the harmful gasses into carbon dioxide and water vapor via chemical and thermal reaction. If you want to learn more about what your catalytic converter does click here to learn more about them.
If you have had your check engine light come on, and it has a catalytic converter based code attached it, then you more than likely just need to clean the carbon buildup in your catalytic converter with some catalytic converter cleaner. Carbon deposits can arise inside of your cats if they are not cleaned regularly. This can be caused by wear and tear of just driving nonstop for the last 10 years without cleaning them (it is recommended to do 4 times every year), or your vehicle’s air to fuel ratio may be a little off and running rich. That means your car has more fuel being put into the engine than it can use and its sending it to your exhaust system where it gets burned off in your catalytic converter. This can cause the metals in your catalytic converter to be smothered in carbon and not be able to perform how it should, letting the bad gasses flow out of your exhaust into the air.
The cleaner has a chance that it may not fix your emissions problem, and if that is the case you will more than likely need to find a new catalytic converter that fits your vehicle because something else has failed inside of the converter, or something else inside of your fuel system has failed and would be worth seeing a professional mechanic about. All cleaners work the same to clean the cats. you need to pick out what cleaner you want first. Once you have done that, a funnel will be needed. lastly, use the funnel and pour the cleaner into your gas tank when it has roughly 3 or 4 gallons of fuel left, and run it for at least 10 miles or until the tank is on E so that the cleaner gets worked through the engine and to your catalytic converters. This should clean most, if not all, of the carbon buildup on your cats and allow them to work properly once again. If your emissions problem persists, then take your vehicle to a professional for further inspection. The cleaner cannot and will not fix any hard failures in your cars or anywhere else. For more information on possible failures click here.