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Hello, all. I have an urgent need for answers regarding California emissions and catalytic converters.

I have a 1997 Nissan pickup whose catalytic converter was stolen a couple of days ago. There's a clean cut in the exhaust pipe where the cat. once was mounted. Apparently there's a cat. converter theft ring going around California these days for the platinum that resides inside.

I've looked and called around for information about a replacement cat. and most places tell me this is a dealer only item. To me that means big bucks for a replacement. Legally, as I understand it, since I live in the Peoples Republic of California, I am required to replace this cat with a California compliant cat. Does this sound correct?

Here's my issue: the truck is not worth a ton of money.

1) Can I replace the cat. with a universal fit, 49 state cat that is OBD II compatible?

2) Will the truck run OK with this cat or will the existing Ca. emissions hardware cause the truck to run rough?

3) Will it pass smog with this Cat.?

A universal, 49 state, OBD II cat. runs about $90-$100 versus $300-$400 for a direct fit OEM cat.

The truck has just been smogged so it's good for another 2 years. If it won't pass smog with this cat., I can work around this.

Thanks in advance for any and all help.
 

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Is anything other than the main exhaust in-and-out hooked to the cat? I'd say a generic high-flow would be fine. Lots of people have them.
 

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Here's my issue: the truck is not worth a ton of money.

1) Can I replace the cat. with a universal fit, 49 state cat that is OBD II compatible?

2) Will the truck run OK with this cat or will the existing Ca. emissions hardware cause the truck to run rough?

3) Will it pass smog with this Cat.?
1 - No.

2 - It'll run OK.

3 - Most likely it will not. All California CATs must be CARB compliant above and beyond the Federal EPA rating. This means that a California CAT uses a high density core making it more expensive.
 
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