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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! Getting a p0420 and p0430 code on 2013 odyssey. Just installed the VCM tuner last week and had mechanic put new plugs in today. I’ve tried the cataclean, clear codes but still comes back on. He quoted $1600 to replace all three cats and another $400 for the four O2 sensors. Instead of forking out $2000, what are thoughts on just replacing the two upstream sensors and see if that solves the problem first. If not then replace all three cats.
Thanks!!
 

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Yes, change the sensors first. If you end up replacing the cats, you'll change the sensors anyway, so may as well just change the sensors first to see if the problem goes away. You have nothing to lose.

Given that you're already getting P0420 and P0430 codes, I'd probably change all 4 sensors, rather than just the two upstream ones.
 
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$1600 for three converters? That sounds like you got quoted for aftermarket cats. I'd be very careful about using those. Most of the time they don't last because they don't have enough of the precious metals in them that make them work (and make them cost so much.) Second, only two are monitored by the PCM so if you don't have a plugged exhaust, or suspect it, I wouldn't bother with the 3rd cat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You are likely correct. Local body shop. What would Honda charge for parts and labor? 132,000 miles currently.
 

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Each cat is upwards of $900 each, just for the part. I changed one out for a customer a few weeks ago on an 08. Was an $1150 job. They definitely hurt. That's why it's so important to never let a check engine light go undiagnosed/repaired, and monitor your oil consumption.
 
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Yikes. What’s lifespan on an aftermarket? Can I get 100k or 5 years out of it?
It depends on the quality of the aftermarket. I've seen some not work right out of the box and others only last a year or two. Personally, I wouldn't use an aftermarket cat. If you do, ask what the warranty is on it. Generally, it's a one year guarantee.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you. You have been very helpful. What are the odds just replacing the two upstream sensors fixes the issue? Which cat is not monitored?
 

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Slim but as suggested above I'd change them first. If you go to the expense of new cats you'd never want to trust new cats to old worn oxygen sensors. I'd replace all four.

There are two cats that are actually the exhausted manifolds. Those are the ones setting codes. The third cat is after those and in the single straight portion of pipe going back to the resonator and muffler. That one is not monitored by the oxygen sensors and PCM.
 

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Having the VCMTuner installed will do nothing for the cats. If the vehicle was burning oil prior to install then that's what damaged the cats. VCMTuner will usually slow the oil burning if it's caused by carbon build up from deactivated cylinders but it will not reverse the damage done to the cats.

If you do nothing then you will have the check engine light on all the time. You won't know if something else goes wrong since the light is always on.

There are cleaning solutions out there that some say work and some say don't. I have no experience with them. You might give them a shot. I don't have any recommendations but I know they are out there.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks John! Hoping the tuner prevents further issues. Just wanted to make sure if I do nothing I am not damaging anything. I assume at some point they’ll clog or fail?
 

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John is on point here.

You won't be doing extra damage to the cats, but if they are damaged/coated beyond repair they will have to be replaced. At today's precious metal prices, $900 for a cat is a steal. Some OEM cats literally go for around $1000 used. Heck, you may be able to take off your current cats and sell them to pay for the replacements (ie, don't let the mechanic keep them).

Do what you can without replacing them first (new O2's, more 'cat cleaning' liquid products before you replace the O2's) and if all else fails, do the two 'front' cats. Make sure the O2 sensors used are OEM or NTK / Denso aftermarket.

-Charlie
 
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I am not sure on the Honda engine but on some like the Nissan's if you continue to run bad primary cats and the material breaks apart it can get sucked back into the cylinders and destroy the engine and is well documented.

As far as buying and selling used cats, check with your state first as it is illegal in some states.
 

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$1600 for three converters? That sounds like you got quoted for aftermarket cats. I'd be very careful about using those. Most of the time they don't last because they don't have enough of the precious metals in them that make them work (and make them cost so much.) Second, only two are monitored by the PCM so if you don't have a plugged exhaust, or suspect it, I wouldn't bother with the 3rd cat.
I only see two catalytic convertors... front and rear...
You could always change the front only, for beginners...
 
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