The catalytic converter on my much loved 2010 Kia Sedona van was stolen. (I think there are two and the rear converter was removed. I'm not a car guy.) It's an every day thing around here.
This is what I learned about this problem.
- Manufacturers only stock OEM converters for 10y post model date. So there's no OEM solution.
- The normal option to an OEM converter is a "bolt-on" aftermarket product. This is typically installed by a service garage or muffler shop. In Nov 2022 there are none available for the Kia Sedona and many other vehicles. It's a national shortage.
- A "straight pipe": This is illegal but in our fallen times nobody seems to care. (Mad Max didn't even have a muffler.) Done by some muffler shops and by guys working out of their home. Oxygen sensor is a common issue, there are probably others. Not so good for the environment, but neither is replacing the vehicle.
- A "universal catalytic converter". Insurance companies will send customers to a muffler shop that will install (weld I think) a "universal converter". These are not a perfect match to the vehicle so they may cause performance issues and trigger a check engine light. For this reason service shops avoid them in normal times. That "we don't go there" rule can cause some bad advice in post-apocalyptic times.
- Sell or junk the vehicle and pay $50,000 for a new van. If sell then the buyer does one of the above.