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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my check engine light came on and I got the PO420 code saying my catalytic converter is going bad. My question is, how long can I drive it this way? It runs fine, my gas mileage is good and she is going strong with 157+ miles.
 

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2016 Nissan Versa S (manual transmission)
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Does your state/local government make you go through an inspection or emissions inspection program (in order to renew your tags)??

If no... then indefinitely. There will be more pollutants coming out of your tailpipe. If you are (ethically) OK with that, then just keep driving it that way.

The only issue is there is no way to tell if/when a new code comes up, as your check engine light is already on.
 

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There is no way to predict how long it'll take before the cat begins to block exhaust. Most likely the engine will begin to lose power as it plugs up, but worst case is the car could simply shut off.
 

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Desert Rodent no emissions here and I plan on fixing it I’m just curious how long I can run it as I save for the repairs.
Like others have posted, your cat will eventually clog. You can always take a long screwdriver or punch and break up and remove the substrate material inside, thus it won't clog.

I had a GM car with a bad cat that I drove over a year, then I fixed it (and ran a drive cycle) to go through emissions inspection (in my state).
 

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Before throwing good money at a bad cat, try pricing another one on ebay or rockauto...

Should be an easy job, just a few bolts and the downstream 02 sensor. I've replaced the "bolt on" style on other cars and it goes quick.

What is the year & engine of your Versa??
 

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Is it really an easy job
I just did a quick check and rockauto has a Walker cat for $335 and ebay for $100-$150. I've used the ebay cats on two of my GM vehicles with no problems. Other posters may disagree with the quality of ebay cats, so the decision would be up to you. For the record, the cats I put on were shipped from Canada and had the whole kit (new gaskets and bolts). Very convenient!!

As for installing a catalytic converter on a Nissan, I haven't done that, yet. From the picture it appears to be 4 bolts and the downstream 02 sensor.

Personally, I picked up a "Ball Universal Joint" from Harbor Freight (3/8" and 1/2" drive) for $8, which made getting a socket on my GM vehicle's bolts so much easier, especially since I was laying on my back under the car doing the work. I don't have a lift.

I will be getting a 02 sensor socket when I do my girlfriend's Dodge. Her cat is starting to rattle, so I know the P0420 will be coming along soon. This (special socket) is also $8 from Harbor Freight and will make my life easier. You may want to look into that, as well.

I might also suggest some penetrating spray (for the old bolts). I use liquid wrench (personal preference).
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thank you Desert Rodent. Those prices aren’t bad at all. I watched a few videos on YouTube and it doesn’t seems too difficult. I will definitely take my time and do some more research on it.
 

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One more thing... You are going to need a tiny amount of anti-seize on the threads of the downstream 02 sensor (when you re-install it). Don't get any on the head of the sensor, just a tiny amount on the threads.
I bought a small tube of copper anti-seize years ago and still have quite a bit left. A little goes a long way.
Good luck... whatever you decide.
 

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Nope, that's nonsense. I've seen a lot of p0420/430 codes and never once seen it be something besides a bad cat. With a scantool that graphs live data it is very easy to confirm that the converter is shot.
 

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It's going to be a p0456 with the fuel cap off. When you see the list of reasons for the p0420, it's because there is a reason the cat failed. I've never heard of a loose gas cap being on that list though, and I don't see how it could possibly even cause a drivability issue on it's own. What is the source of this information?

They are supposed to last the life of the vehicle, as long as it's properly maintained. If it's not running well, the cats take a hit.
 
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