Catalytic  Converter theft is a nationwide issue. Thieves take catalytic converters because they're rich in precious metals, such as platinum, palladium, and rhodium. A thief can take one to then earn hundreds of dollars.

One way to protect yourself from having your catalytic converter stolen is a product called the CATETCH/CATGUARD Label ID System. Once installed, these permanent labels leave an etched ID mark on the catalytic converter if removed.

This ID mark would be an indicator that it is a stolen catalytic converter and consumers can register their label so that once scanned, their vehicle information would be available to law enforcement. Catalytic Converter thieves tend to avoid stealing labeled parts as it can increase their chances of getting caught.

While the CATETCH/CATGUARD Label ID System retails for $24.49 for a single kit, the Duluth Police Department announced Monday that they had received 50 more labels that they are offering to the public.

To obtain one, just stop by the Public Safety Building, located at 2030 North Arlington Avenue, during the business hours of Monday - Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Residents can apply these labels themselves or ask their autobody shop to do it while their vehicles are getting serviced.

The manufacturer says they are quick and easy to install:

  • Apply CATETCH/CATGUARD labels directly to your clean, cool, and dry catalytic converter and use supplied etching fluid (with the brush) to the label as instructed.
  • Idle your vehicle for a few minutes to permanently etch your CATETCH/CATGUARD PIN code and website into your catalytic converter.
  • Apply International Security Register window warning decals to your front driverside and passenger windows.
  • Register your CATETCH/CATGUARD PIN code, free of charge, in the International Security Register database using your vehicle VIN, make and model, and owner information.
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