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Discussion Starter #1
:-(
Do I replace with a universal or a factory? If I go with a universal because a) I don't have to use my insurance and b) so if it happens again I won't want to give up my Element, what are the major differences between a factory and after -market part? I have to take the emissions test once a year. I don't want to have to worry about the part going bad after so long.
 

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Everyday someone posts that there cat was stolen . I seriously don't under the police dept's attitude on this ? It's almost as bad as thieves stealing the brass vases from grave sites around these parts !

Anyway an aftermarket cat will do , a good muffler place should know what modifications need to be done , you had an oxygen sensor in the cat , that is definitely gone too , which needs to be replaced in order to pass inspection .

Sorry and good luck

a whole thread of reading , you're not alone , here:http://www.elementownersclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=71815
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, I have read conflicting stories on universals going bad and choking the engine with CO2, so I was hesitant to go for an after-market part.
 

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I know your cat was stolen because Honda cats have a different composition of materials that makes them more valuable, so I would do some more research to ensure any aftermarket cat has the right guts. I'm no expert, though, so keep asking around.
 

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Natalia,

Just curious, where in chicago do you live? I live in the logan square area and it was stolen on the street there.

When I had mine replaced with a universal, I was out the door for about $500, but that was with a non working oxygen sensor. I'm still trying to deal with that. I think that an OEM setup will set you back around $1000-1500. I considered that, but I also found out that OEM cats are worth much more on the black market, so I'd be much likely to be targeted again afterwards once they see that it's an aftermarket. That was honestly reason enough for me to go with the aftermarket (plus the extra cash in my pocket).

The problem now is that my check engine light is still on, throwing an oxygen sensor code. From my research, it might be that they put in an aftermarket sensor and it isn't talking to the car properly. I ordered a Honda oxygen sensor that I plan to put in, hopefully will clear the light for good. The process is outlined in that link jesbecause pasted above.

Sucks this is even a problem for us! Hope you get all fixed up, let us know what you end up doing!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I do live on the NW side but it was stolen in my work parking lot which is near Peterson and Pulaski. I did know you need Honda O2 sensors. My mechanic said with an aftermarket CC and Honda O2 sensors, I will be paying about $800. I am still going to call around because my uncle and mechanic cousin think thats a little bit high.
I may be getting the catclamp. It may be worth it just to save a headache. That being said, if it does manage to happen again, I may have trade my car in.
 

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Same happened to me at Western and Milwaukee Aves. Insurance covered me so I took it to the dealership. As I'm still under warranty up to 80k I don't want anything but Honda parts on it. Also, I am currently in the process of trying to get some attention on this matter from the Chicago Police Department and my Alderman.

If you are interested-

http://chicago.everyblock.com/crime-posts/nov14-catylitic-convertor-stolen-5522791/
 

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Just an update, I swapped out the generic O2 sensor for a honda one and the check engine light is off and has stayed off (for a day now).

I went to a place A+ Auto Service on 3751 West North Ave. and they put in a universal Cat and a useless O2 sensor for $519.05 including tax. I ended up buying my own sensor and putting it in, and hopefully, this weekend, I will be going back and getting a refund on parts for the sensor, which is a $189.99 line item. Not positive I'll get the money back, but it's worth a try.

It turns out they already did the welding of this nut onto the end of the cat, as described in this post: http://www.elementownersclub.com/forums/showpost.php?p=970141&postcount=44

I had to extend the 4 wires in the honda unit about 4" to get it to reach where the nut was welded.

According to the everyblock thread, and from when I asked the service writer at the place I went to, by replacing it with a cheap universal cat, you make it much less attractive to the thieves since the value is just a fraction of OEM value on the scrap market.
 

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Well I wanted to give you an update. Progressive won't pay for Honda O2 sensors. They are only giving me $100 more than my deductible which is BS and which is why I will be switching insurance companies soon. So, from what I have read, I shouldn't even bother with after market O2 sensors, I should just go and buy Honda ones? I told the Progressive guy and of course, I was just dismissed because I must not know what I am talking about.
 

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You are 100% correct , the Honda 02 sensor is the only one that will work , many have tried others and all of them failed (cel) check engine light will soon come on and you've used the aftermarket one , so it is no longer returnable + electrical part .. blah blah blah . Besides all that , just tell your insurance agent that if the aftermarket 02 sensor fails emissions , what are you supposed to do then ? If the insurance co is giving you $100 towards the sensor , you won't be out that much money (any is too much) but better then nothing ......

This is the sensor you need ,#13 here:http://www.hondaautomotiveparts.com/auto/jsp/mws/prddisplay.jsp?inputstate=5&catcgry1=ELEMENT&catcgry2=2003&catcgry3=5DR+EX+(4WD+SD+A/B)&catcgry4=KA4AT&catcgry5=EXHAUST+PIPE+-+MUFFLER
This is the blue plug / bank 2 ...... sensor , just in case some guys play stupid .....

For $110.78 plus shipping , you ain't too far off , another choice , is go to a local honda dealer parts dept. with a printout of the sensor and price , he might match or come close , you never know ?????

Good luck and thanks for the update ......
 

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You are 100% correct , the Honda 02 sensor is the only one that will work , many have tried others and all of them failed (cel) check engine light will soon come on and you've used the aftermarket one , so it is no longer returnable + electrical part .. blah blah blah . Besides all that , just tell your insurance agent that if the aftermarket 02 sensor fails emissions , what are you supposed to do then ? If the insurance co is giving you $100 towards the sensor , you won't be out that much money (any is too much) but better then nothing ......

This is the sensor you need ,#13 here:http://www.hondaautomotiveparts.com/auto/jsp/mws/prddisplay.jsp?inputstate=5&catcgry1=ELEMENT&catcgry2=2003&catcgry3=5DR+EX+(4WD+SD+A/B)&catcgry4=KA4AT&catcgry5=EXHAUST+PIPE+-+MUFFLER
This is the blue plug / bank 2 ...... sensor , just in case some guys play stupid .....

For $110.78 plus shipping , you ain't too far off , another choice , is go to a local honda dealer parts dept. with a printout of the sensor and price , he might match or come close , you never know ?????

Good luck and thanks for the update ......

^I'm one of those that tried and failed with an aftermarket sensor. Do what he's suggesting.

Are you using an aftermarket or OEM cat? How much is your deductible? My aftermarket repair was was about the same price as my $500 deductible, so I didn't bother going through insurance (I have geico too, btw)
 
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