CatClamp vs CatStrap Reviews: Is The CatStrap Effective?

Necessity is the mother of invention. The necessity to protect one’s catalytic converter from theft has spawned new inventions to protect those key vehicle parts. The questions are whether will they work well enough to cut the number of thefts and whether are they worth the money.

The CatStrap is a combination of a steel cable and adhesive. This combination is supposed to adhere to your exhaust system and catalytic converter to form a strong barrier of defense against thieves. It may be worth the $160+ price tag.

To learn more about these two catalytic converter protection devices, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about so you can make a good choice in protecting your vital engine part.

Why Are People Stealing Catalytic Converters?


As you know these exhaust devices are designed to purify emissions as they exit your exhaust system. To do this job effectively, the catalytic converter relies on three special components.

These special components are rhodium, palladium, and platinum. You may not have heard about the first two but they are as valuable, if not more than the third one. That may be hard to believe.

An ounce of platinum is selling for $972 right now. An ounce of palladium is going for $1362 and the most valuable, Rhodium sells for $10,200 per ounce. As you can see, stealing these catalytic converters can be quite a lucrative endeavor.

This is the reason why you need to protect your catalytic converter. When yours is stolen, it may not be covered by your insurance, and replacing it may run hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.

Even selling one of these converters for scrap can net a thief between $100 to $500 or even up to $1000+. Then it is so easy to get these converters making the temptation to steal hard to resist.

What is a CatStrap For Catalytic Converter?

This is a strip of aircraft-quality steel cables combined with 2 other similar strips. Then these steel cables are enclosed in the heat-activated adhesive that helps the CatStrap bond to your exhaust system including your catalytic converter.

To help the adhesive process, this catalytic converter protector uses exhaust clamps to hold everything in place. Then to make cutting through this device difficult, the company placed 4 layers of dis-similar materials to create this product.

It would take a lot of saw blades to cut through it. On top of that, the steel cables can slide back and forth during the cutting process making it extra difficult to cut those cables.

To give you an extra layer of protection, this company has also developed what they call the CatEye. This is an alarm system that lets out a siren reaching about 130 decibels once it is activated.

This alarm uses a motion detecting system that is triggered when it senses someone under your vehicle. To prevent false alarms, the alarm is not designed to go off until between 5 and 15 seconds of actual movement are detected.

This is a double layer of protection for your valuable catalytic converter.

How Does a CatStrap Work?


When you buy this system, you can install it yourself but the company recommends that you use a professional installer. The installation is easy and once in place, the heat of your exhaust system will activate the adhesive.

This activation helps the adhesive bond with the metal and keeps it solidly in place. You should notice a slight burning odor for a couple of days while the adhesive does its bonding.

Once in place, the steel cables prevent the thief from easily removing the catalytic converter. It will take a lot longer to cut those cables and clamps making theft riskier.

The longer it takes to remove your exhaust component, the less likely thieves will be interested in stealing it. There is more of a risk of being caught the longer they are underneath your vehicle.

This is a simpler method to protect your vehicle than using the Cat Clamp option. This latter option is more like a cage encasing your catalytic converter and may be harder to install.

Do Catalytic Converter Shields Actually Work?

There may be a variety of opinions concerning this topic. Some people will yes they do because their system stops a thief. Others will say no because the system they bought failed to stop a thief.

The difference in these answers may be the attitude of the thieves involved. A determined thief may be more successful at circumventing these catalytic converter protections but a lesser thief may not get past the security system.

If you use an alarm, it had better be very loud, hard to disengage, and have the sound last for a long time. If the thief can disable the alarm, then these are not that effective. You can’t do much if no one hears the alarm when it sounds.

In many cases, these systems have worked but like we said, a determined thief may not be deterred and you will lose your catalytic converter no matter what you do.

But when it comes to RVs and storage facilities, you may be required to put one on if you want to continue storing your RV at that specific facility. Making theft harder for thieves is a deterrent and can be successful.

Is The CatStrap Effective?


The average time it takes a thief to remove your catalytic converter is less than 60 seconds. That is not a lot of time which is why many thieves target vehicles. When you place the CatStrap over your converter, the time it takes to remove the protection and the part is another 75 seconds.

But that extra minute and 15 seconds may be enough time for the thief to be spotted and caught. So in some ways, yes, this device is very effective. But it is not completely thief proof.

Where you park your car, RV or truck will depend on if the device will be effective or not. If the thief has complete darkness, no one is nearby, and has lots of time, then they probably will defeat the security device and still make off with your catalytic converter.

This device is not going to stop all thieves all the time. You will need to have extra security options in place, like lights, fences, etc., to help the CatStrap to be more effective. The more time a thief has to spend on one car, etc., the more likely they will be caught.

Are Catalytic Converter Anti-Theft Devices Worth It?

Yes, they can be. Paying the cost for one of these devices is better than paying for a replacement catalytic converter. The cost of these devices ranges between $130 to over $270 and if they do stop a thief, then they gave you your money’s worth.

But there are other precautions you need to take as well to make this expense and defense worth your costs. One is to park in an area that has lots of foot or other traffic. Thieves will not want to spend more time tackling these devices when there are lots of people around.

Second, you should park in a well-lit area or light up your parking spot better so the thief does not have the cover of darkness protecting their activities. Thieves love dark parking spots as they can work easier and faster knowing no one can see them.

Third, engrave your converter with your vehicle’s VIN. This will make it easier to recover by police. Or you can park your car close to a wall, and if you have more than one car, park the one with the lowest ground clearance outside of the other one.

How Long Does It Take To Install a CatStrap?


It is said that you can install this device within 30 minutes approx. The time it takes you to do it will depend on your mechanical and tool skills. A professional may take less time as they have had more practice installing these devices.

If you know what you are doing and are following the instructions carefully, you should not spend that much more than 30 minutes under your car, truck, or RV.

The hardest part of this task will be enduring that burnt odor for the 2 to 3 days it takes for it to disappear. If your catalytic converter comes with a heat shield, then you route the device between the converter and the heat shield.

Then use U-bolt clamps to help hold the device in place. These are not part of the kit but if you take and save a picture of them installed, it will help your warranty claim if your converter is stolen.

You can get instructions and more tips at this link. The link takes you to the CatStrap website and which provides more information about this device as well as the CatEye alarm.

CatStrap Reviews

So far only one person we have come across called this invention ‘brilliant’. That was the most extreme positive review we found. Other positive reviews have liked this device and some who have bought it have credited it for protecting their catalytic converter from theft.

Others did not like it as it only slowed the thieves down by just over a minute and that it was a very obvious security device. They liked the easy installation and that is always a plus for any device you buy.

Most of the people analyzing the effectiveness of this product say that it won’t stop determined thieves. Or resourceful ones and that may be true. But having the device over your exhaust system is better than not having it. This device does increase the odds of the thieves being caught.

Most people were not overjoyed by this invention but they were not mocking it or heavily criticizing it as many owners have had success using it.

CatStrap vs Cat Clamp


You have already read about the CatStrap and what it can do as well as how it is designed. So we won’t waste a lot of space talking about that security device. The Cat Clamp is more like a cage using split clamps and aircraft level steel cables.

Both the clamps and the cables act as a strong deterrent against theft and it may take thieves a little longer to circumvent that security device. This defensive device adds about another minute to the 60 seconds thieves normally take to remove the catalytic converter.

The drawbacks to this device over the CatStrap are that it is more expensive to buy and it is harder to install. But it is an effective option if you want more protection over your converter.

The question is, do you want to pay the extra money for the same type of protection the inexpensive CatStrap offers?

Does Insurance Cover Catalytic Converter Theft?

This will depend on the type of insurance coverage you bought for your vehicles. If you only have liability or collision or liability and collision insurance then the answer would be no. Those policies are not designed to cover the theft of key vehicle components.

If you want to be financially protected when your catalytic converter is stolen, then you would need to buy comprehensive insurance coverage. How much you will pay out of pocket will depend on the deductible the policy comes with.

Talk to your insurance agent and see what they say and what they recommend. It may pay to have insurance coverage as it should spare you paying for a new converter yourself.

Some Final Words

When it comes to protecting your catalytic converter from theft. There is only so much you can do. It will help deter thieves if you do invest in the device described above.

But these defensive measures are not foolproof or impossible to circumvent. Make sure to take extra security measures to help these devices protect your vehicle. Park in well-protected spots to help cut down the temptation to steal.

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