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Nissan Murano Catalytic Converters

Your Nissan Murano’s catalytic converters are devices that convert the pollutants from your vehicle’s exhaust system into less toxic substances. Two are called “pre-cats”, which are specially engineered to reduce startup emissions. The third converter is located under the carriage of your car just in front of your muffler.

What is the function of Nissan Murano’s catalytic converter?

The internal combustion engine that powers your vehicle produces three types of harmful air contaminants:

  • Carbon monoxide: Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless, odorless gas that is highly toxic.
  • Hydrocarbons: When gasoline fails to burn cleanly, exhaust gases will contain hydrocarbons, which are also known as volatile organic compounds. These volatile organic compounds are one of the major components of smog.
  • Nitrogen oxides: Your engine also expels nitrogen oxides, which are another one of smog’s major components. Nitrogen oxides combine with atmospheric moisture to produce acid rain. These compounds can be highly irritating to the human body.

Catalytic converters function to remove these hazardous pollutants from your car’s exhaust fumes. Converters contain metals that act as reduction and oxidation catalysts. The metals most often used for this purpose are palladium, rhodium, and/or platinum.

Converters first reduce nitrogen oxides by binding with nitrogen atoms, thus freeing the oxygen atoms. The nitrogen atoms then bind with each other and are re-released into the atmosphere as harmless nitrogen gas. Next, converters oxidize CO and unused fuel. This reaction produces oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water.

Your Nissan Murano’s catalytic converter also contains a feedback mechanism that monitors your fuel injection system. This oxygen sensor is mounted right in front of your converter and close to your engine. This sensor feeds information to your engine computer about the amount of oxygen in your exhaust fumes. This enables your engine computer to adjust your vehicle’s air-to-fuel ratio for maximum efficiency.

How do you know your existing catalytic converter needs replacement?

Your Nissan Murano’s catalytic converters were engineered to last for the lifetime of your vehicle. Under certain circumstances, however, they may need to be replaced. Here are some signs to look for.

  • Emissions tests: If your existing catalytic converter isn’t operating optimally, your Nissan Murano may not pass emission tests.
  • Diminishing fuel efficiency: If you find yourself visiting the gas pump more often because your mileage has dropped, the culprit may be your existing converter. A catalytic converter that has become plugged can’t funnel exhaust fumes efficiently to your muffler. This affects the amount of air that your engine can take in, which may affect the fuel-to-air mixture that drives internal combustion.
  • Poor acceleration: Your existing converter may also be to blame if your car's performance takes a hit. Restricted exhaust flow impedes internal combustion inside your Nissan Murano’s engine. You may also notice difficulties getting your car to start.
  • Rattling noises: If internal combustion isn’t proceeding properly, unburned fuel can get into exhaust gases. This can cause structural damage to your existing converter, which can cause it to rattle.