Best Catalytic Converter Cleaner: How to Find the Right One

Best Catalytic Converter Cleaner: How to Find the Right One

You have decided to get the best catalytic converter cleaner in the market. The question is – which do you buy? There are a jillion options to choose from. The process of finding one is backbreaking. Read on to learn everything you need to know about catalytic converter cleaners and insight into 10 of the best.

Best on a Budget Sea Foam SF-16 Check Price
Best Overall LUCAS 10013 Check Price
Best for Petrol Engines Chevron Cleaner Check Price
Best for Diesel Engines Archoil AR6200 Check Price
Best for Carburetor Berryman 0117 B-12 Check Price
Best for Fuel Injectors Red Line (60103) Check Price
Best Fuel Additive Star Tron 32 oz Check Price
Best for Rust and Corrosion Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 Check Price
Best Fuel Economy Royal Purple 11722 Check Price
Best for Hybrid Cars Mr. Gasket 120009 Check Price

Table of Contents

Our Top 10 Catalytic Converter Cleaners

To lessen the burden, we have reviewed more than 50 of the best to come up with the best 10 products. They are classified according to our experience with each. You can easily choose from one or more categories. Here we go!

Best Budget – Sea Foam SF-16 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

This cleaner and lubricant are manufactured by Sea Foam to ensure you prevent all kinds of damage to your engine. When mixed with fuel, it dissolves any kind of residue by increasing its lubricity. The Sea Foam SF-16 Catalytic Converter Cleaner is suitable for all diesel and gasoline engines. You can use it without the need for professional help.

Sea Foam SF-16 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Price is the major benefit of this product. You get a carburetor and fuel injector cleaner, lubricator, and fuel stabilizer in one can. It is a multi-use product designed to prevent clogging from the residue, resulting in quieter and smoother rides.

Key Features

  • Effective and safe
  • Smooth working of the engine
  • Blends well
  • Easy to use
  • Budget-friendly

Pros

  • Reduces fuel burning
  • Can be used in any kind of car, truck, or diesel-based motor
  • Stabilizes fuel for 2 years
  • Cleans valves and deposits in the chamber
  • Dissolves residue in crankcase oil

Cons

  • Lack of a return policy from the manufacturer

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Capped, pour-in
  • Capacity – 16 oz
  • Weight – 1 pound
  • Brand – Sea Foam
  • Model – SF – 16
Best on a Budget
Sea Foam SF-16 Motor Treatment
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Best Overall – LUCAS 10013 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Opt for this product for a smooth and gunk-free operating motor. The LUCAS 10013 catalytic converter cleaner cleans all fuel residues. The result is a power boost to the engine by increasing its efficiency. Use it on all kinds of diesel-based and gasoline engines.

LUCAS 10013 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

It helps in the reduction of harmful gas emissions by neutralizing low sulfur fuel issues. This all-in-one catalytic leaner will help you increase the life of your pumps and injectors.

Key Features

  • Dissolves residue in fuel
  • Burns fuel completely
  • No solvent
  • High-detergent mechanism
  • Lubricates injectors and carburetors

Pros

  • Your vehicle is not affected if you exceed the ad iced dosage
  • Lessens smog emissions and formations
  • Increases fuel efficiency
  • Helps incomplete combustion
  • Multi-purpose

Cons

  • Pricier than other products

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Capped, pour-in
  • Capacity – 1 gallon
  • Weight – 8 pounds
  • Brand – LUCAS
  • Model – 10013
Best Overall
Lucas Oil Deep Clean Fuel System Cleaner | Advance Auto Parts

Lucas Deep Clean is blended with an exclusive Lucas additive package and specific carrier fluid that contains no diesel fuel, kerosene or anything else that can be harmful or useless to an engine.

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Best for Petrol Engines – Chevron Concentrated Fuel System Cleaner

This product removes carbon deposits and impurities from all critical parts of your engine. It is trusted by mechanics and motorists all over the world. Even though it’s meant for petrol engines, gasoline engines can use it. You will get satisfactory performance from using the Chevron Concentrated Fuel System Cleaner.

Chevron Concentrated Fuel System Cleaner

To get fuel complete for burning, it works molecule by molecule to simplify the gunk and dissolve it. It’s a multi-purpose additive that restores, protects, and cleans your car’s engine.

Key Features

  • Could be used on unused cars
  • Boosts combustion rate
  • Cleans fuel injectors, carburetors, ports, and so forth
  • Works against over-heating
  • Reliable

Pros

  • Ensures reduced emission of harmful gases in the environment
  • Cleans out junk and other deposits
  • Increases fuel efficiency
  • Restores lost power and acceleration
  • Reduce engine overload and jerkiness

Cons

  • The engine may start to burn oil

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Liquid tube neck bottle
  • Capacity – 20 oz
  • Weight – 1 pound
  • Brand – Chevron
  • Model – 66740
Best for Petrol Engines
Chevron Techron Concentrate Plus Cleaner
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Best for Diesel Engines – Archoil AR6200 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

You can modify your car’s combustion to make it efficient and smooth when you use this product. This provides apt lubricant to fuel and oil. The Archoil AR6200 uses a decisive detergent action that cleans residue and dirt. It also breaks sludge into micro-particles.

Archoil AR6200 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Normally, you just need a small bottle to treat a large amount of fuel. This is because the product comes highly concentrated. The cleaner is designed to work perfectly on diesel engines. It also works as a demulsifier for active water separation.

It can also be used on gasoline engines and it prevents corrosion. This is the cleaner for your diesel engine if you want it to be in better working condition with thorough combustion.

Key Features

  • Doesn’t rip off paint
  • Highly concentrated
  • Prevents corrosion
  • Enhances lubrication
  • Works exceptionally well for DPF cleaning

Pros

  • Great for gas engines as well
  • Sufficient detergent action cleans sludge from fuel
  • Helps in storing fuel for long durations
  • Protects the fuel system
  • Can work on gasoline engines

Cons

  • Doesn’t have a tube to deliver the product to the tank

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Capped
  • Capacity – 8 oz
  • Weight – 9.6 ounces
  • Brand – Archoil
  • Model – AR6200
Best for Diesel Engines
Archoil AR6200 Fuel Treatment
$45.95
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05/27/2021 10:33 am GMT

Best for Carburetor – Berryman 0117 B-12 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Berryman has been offering quality items for more than a century. This product is from a family-owned company designed to dissolve the residue after thoroughly cleaning the carburetor. It uses High Energy Solvent Technology (HEST) to increase fuel efficiency.

Berryman 0117 B-12 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

The carburetor is responsible for mixing air and fuel with the perfect ratios for proper combustion. For the process to work efficiently the carburetor’s cylinder needs to be free from any deposit, residue, or varnish.

The Berryman 0117 B-12 is designed to do this for your car. The result is healthier distributor shafts, throttle body, and carb linkage. It also ensures fuel has an easier flow.

Key Features

  • O2 sensor safe
  • Disperse moisture when used with gasoline
  • Improves acceleration
  • Comes in different capacities and sizes
  • Provides lubrication to carburetors
  • Uses HEST

Pros

  • Comes in different capacities and sizes
  • Quick dissolving mechanism
  • Improves drivability by smoothening the functioning of the carburetor
  • Environment friendly
  • Reliable

Cons

  • May strip off paint

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Pour-in capped can
  • Capacity – 16 ounces
  • Weight – 1.33 pounds
  • Brand – Berryman
  • Model – 0117
Best for Carburetor
Berryman Products 0117 B-12
$4.68
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05/27/2021 10:39 am GMT

Best for Fuel Injectors – Red Line (60103) Catalytic Converter Cleaner

The Red Line (60103) works well with fuel injectors because it contains Polyether amines. Compromising of powerful detergents, it works on high and low heat conditions. It stabilizes gasoline and protects the carburetor from the formation of gum and varnish.

Red Line (60103) Catalytic Converter Cleaner

You get lubrication when you use this product. As your vehicle ages, the engine begins getting sluggish and fuel efficiency is reduced. If you want your car to run like new, this product is the best for fuel injectors.

Key Features

  • It is used every 1500 miles
  • Perfect for cleaning fuel injectors
  • Affordable
  • All-in-one product
  • Enhances performance

Pros

  • Could be used with oxygenated fuels
  • Safe for long term use
  • Works well on carburetors
  • Increases the lifespan of your fuel injector
  • Improves fuel efficiency

Cons

  • Not compatible with diesel engines
  • Not compatible with all gasoline or petrol vehicles

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Liquid tube neck bottle
  • Capacity – 8 ounces
  • Weight – 0.59 pounds
  • Brand – Red Line
  • Model – 60103
Best for Fuel Injectors
Red Line (60103) Complete SI-1 Cleaner
$13.90
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05/27/2021 10:39 am GMT

Best Fuel Additive – Star Tron 32 oz Catalytic Converter Cleaner

It is an additive designed to break down sludge and water into simpler particles. This in turn makes fuel burning easier. Superior enzyme ethnology ensures your engine runs smoothly and starts quickly. It the same case if you left it for months without using ethanol dissolved fuel.

Star Tron 32 oz Catalytic Converter Cleaner

The Star Tron 32 oz Catalytic Converter Cleaner increases fuel efficiency and ensures uniform combustion. It can stabilize the engine for up to 2 years without forming any clogs in the carburetor. You can use it in excess without worrying about damaging your engine.

If you are looking for an effective and environment-friendly catalytic converter cleaner additive, this is the product for you.

Key Features

  • Rejuvenates old fuel
  • Increases fuel efficiency
  • Improves performance
  • Solves ethanol issues

Pros

  • Prevents clogging
  • Varnishes efficiently
  • Excess amounts will not damage the engine
  • Added directly to the fuel
  • Can be used in any kind of vehicle

Cons

  • Cannot be used in states with high CARB standards

 Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Capped, pour-in
  • Capacity – 32 oz
  • Weight – 1.91 pounds
  • Brand – Star Brite
  • Model – 93032
Best Fuel Additive
Star Brite 93032 Star Tron Enzyme Fuel Treatment
$32.94
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05/27/2021 08:43 am GMT

Best for Rust and Corrosion – Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Ideal for proper maintenance of your vehicle’s engine and high mileage, Marvel Mystery’s catalytic cleaner is one of the best products you can find in the market. It can be used in the crankcase as it is designed for today’s advanced systems.

Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

It has been blended perfectly to smooth out the engine’s functionality. Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 is a biodiesel and ethanol-friendly product. Apart from offering good lubrication and increasing fuel efficiency. It also protects against rust and corrosion. This is a great product if you are looking for a cleaner that doesn’t corrode but instead protects from corrosion.

Key Features

  • Provides lubrication
  • Stabilizes fuel
  • Prevents corrosion and rust
  • Can be used with advanced fuels
  • Easy to use

Pros

  • Dissolves gunk and sled
  • Increases fuel efficiency
  • Can be used on advanced fuels
  • Enhances power and compression
  • Can be used on synthetic oil

Cons

  • Has a strong smell that may make you uncomfortable as you use it

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Tube Neck Bottle
  • Capacity – 12 oz
  • Weight – 0.6 pounds
  • Brand – Marvel Mystery Oil
  • Model – 50665
Best for Rust and Corrosion
Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 Fuel and Motor Treatment
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Best Fuel Economy – Royal Purple 11722 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

This product maximizes your fuel efficiency. The Royal Purple 11722 Catalytic Converter Cleaner deeply penetrates the engine ensuring all parts are cleaned. Considering it is EPA/CARB compliant, you can use it on diesel and gasoline engines. The increased lubrication increases your car’s performance.

Royal Purple 11722 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

It can be used on all engines. Environmental friendly, the product doesn’t damage the combustion chamber and it reduces emissions.

Key Features

  • Smooth liquid flow
  • Sold individually
  • Unscented
  • Increase engine life
  • Oxygen sensor safe

Pros

  • Offers protection against rust
  • Deeply cleans all the parts
  • Blends with the fuels properly
  • Reduces dirt and gel formation
  • EPA/CARB compliant

Cons

  • You need to use it five to six times to see a difference

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Can, Plastic cup
  • Capacity – 20 oz
  • Weight – 1.2 pounds
  • Brand – Royal Purple
  • Model – 11722
Best Fuel Economy
Royal Purple 11722-2PK Fuel System Cleaner
$28.72
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05/27/2021 10:45 am GMT

Best for Hybrid Cars – Mr. Gasket 120009 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

Mr. Gasket 120009 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

The first thing you notice about Mr. Gasket 120009 Catalytic Converter Cleaner is a decrease in carbon buildup. At the same time, you will notice a decrease in your vehicle’s emission levels.

It is perfect for hybrid cars and can ensure your vehicle passes the smog test easily. The product is offered in a reasonable quantity. It will last more than you expected. Make sure you read the instructions carefully before you use the cleaner.

Key Features

  • Reliable product
  • Easy to store
  • Easy to use
  • Exhaust and fuel cleaner

Pros

  • Value for money
  • Lasts longer than expected
  • Reduces emissions and is perfect for cleaning your exhaust
  • Prevents accumulation of carbon particles
  • Cleans the catalytic converter thoroughly

Cons

  • Takes time before you can see visible improvements

Product Specifications

  • Bottle type – Plastic jerrycan
  • Capacity – 5 liters
  • Weight – 1l.3 pounds
  • Brand – Mr. Gasket
  • Model – 120009
Best for Hybrid Cars
Mr Gasket 120009 System Cleaner
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How Catalytic Converter Cleaners Work

The build-up in a car’s exhaust system is removed by chemical reactions from a catalytic converter cleaner. This includes the fuel injectors, cylinders, and other exhaust parts.

There are carbon deposits from fuel as it flows through the car’s exhaust and combustion system. Catalytic converter cleaners are solvents that are added to fuel to break down these deposits.

They break down the molecular structure of these hydrocarbon particles when they come into contact with them. This makes it easier to transport the particles out of the exhaust system. The result is an improvement of the vehicle’s overall performance.

Benefits of Catalytic Converter Cleaners Additives

Catalytic converters have four major benefits. They are:

Lowers Emission Levels

In the early 20th century, a French scientist invented the catalytic converter. It was designed to reduce the level of harmful gases produced by vehicle engines. These gases are harmful to humans and the environment.

The reduction of emission levels from vehicles is a subject of ongoing debate. Early converters were only able to turn carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons into less harmful carbon dioxide. Cars manufactured from the ‘80s had a third converter to convert nitrogen oxides.

Using a catalytic converter cleaner ensures the levels of emission from your car are significantly reduced. The cleaner helps you pass the emission test while reducing the negative impact of emissions on the environment.

Improves Engine Performance

Engine performance improvement is a major benefit of these cleaners. When the hydrocarbons are improperly combusted, they stick to some parts of the engine. They interfere with the engine’s function resulting in reduced efficiency of the car.

When you clean the fuel injection system using a catalytic converter cleaner, you get more power with less fuel consumption. Overall power is improved because it helps clean the cylinders. As a result, friction is reduced increasing power.

Any object in the path of exhaust fumes affects the performance of your engine. Since a catalytic converter cleaner removes the carbon deposits in the converter, it removes the blockage

Saves Money

You save money in two ways when you have a clean exhaust system and engine. Since you can clean it at a marginally lower cost, you won’t spend money changing your car’s catalytic converter. A lower fuel and maintenance cost is the other way you save money. This is due to the engine’s improved efficiency by producing more power with less fuel.

Gets Rid of the Rotten Egg Smell

Any vehicle that has been running for years will have a rotten egg smell if the catalytic converter is not cleaned. This is a result of the carbon deposits building up in the exhaust system. Once you start using a cleaner, you will notice the smell reducing until it finally disappears.

Catalytic Converter Cleaner Buying Guide

Some of the things to check before you purchase a catalytic converter cleaner include:

Compatibility

The majority of catalytic converter cleaners are compatible with a range of engines. They may work on gasoline and diesel engines, or 4-stroke and 2-stroke engines. However, some are not compatible with several engines.

You need to find out the type of engine your car uses. Then you can look at the list of compatible engines on the manufacturer’s manual to ensure you can use the cleaner on your car.

Capacity

Take note cleaning your vehicle’s engine and exhaust using a catalytic converter cleaner is not a one-time thing. You need to do it from time to time. You should consider packages that offer you a discount for buying in volumes to save money.

Eco-Friendly

The contents of a catalytic converter cleaner are a mixture of several chemicals. You need to know how safe these chemicals are to prevent damaging your engine and the environment. Find out if the product meets regulations such as OTC and VOC (Volatile Organic Compound), and low sulfur requirements.

How to Use Catalytic Converters Cleaners

Marvel Mystery Oil 50665 Catalytic Converter Cleaner

The following 5-step guide will show you how to use a catalytic converter cleaner.

Step 1: Check the Spark Plugs

What do spark plugs have to do with cleaning the catalytic converter? Excessive buildup on your converter may be a sign of your car running rich. Running rich is when the air and fuel mixture isn’t right. It may also be caused by one or more of your spark plugs not “sparking” correctly. It’s a good idea to change your spark plugs often.

The rate of carbon buildup on your vehicle’s catalytic converter is reduced by good spark plugs. When spark plugs are in good condition, they burn the fuel completely. Check your car’s manual to know the amount and type of plugs you need to purchase.

Step 2: Add the Cleaner

Once you have confirmed the spark plugs are in good working condition, empty the contents of the cleaner into your gas tank. Open the tank, open the bottle, and empty the contents into the tank.

If the cleaner came in a large container such as a jerrycan, read the fuel to cleaner ratio before you pour in the contents. Read the instructions on the label and follow them.

Step 3: Drive Around

For the best results, drive for at least 50 miles non-stop. If possible, drive the car until the tank is empty. This ensures the converter and other parts of the engine are cleaned thoroughly.

Step 4: The Check Engine Light

If your vehicle’s check engine light was on, it should be off by the time you empty the tank. If it does not go off, it may be due to too much carbon deposit buildup. Get a second bottle of the cleaner and repeat the cleaning process.

Step 5: Finish Up

Refill your tank and continue with your daily activities. You can also test the car’s emission levels. Remember to repeat the cleaning often. The time-frame is determined by how often you use your car. For example, you can clean the converter several times a year if you use the vehicle daily.

Catalytic Converter Cleaner FAQs

From the above information, you know there is a plethora of products out there to choose them. Some of the general queries people make about these products are provided below.

Question: Are Catalytic Converter Cleaners Worth the Investment?

Answer: Yes! They help in breaking down and reducing the number of toxic pollutants. This is after they have broken them down and oxidized them to the highest level. It also helps remove any carbon buildup that prevents proper exhaust functions. Using it for some time will lengthen the life of your catalytic converter.

Question: How Do I Use a Catalytic Converter?

Answer: Start by reading all the instructions that come with the product. There may be a slight difference from one product to another. Pour the contents of the product into the fuel tank. Make sure you know the fuel to product ratio. Usually, the ratio is provided in the manual. Close the fuel tank and take your car out for a drive.

Ensure you drive faster than usual to increase the time it will take to clean all the clogs. Make sure you check the compatibility of your car with the product. Make queries if you are not sure. The results do not show up immediately. You may need to use a cleaner several times before you see an improvement.

Question: What is a Sign that the Catalytic Converter is Clogged?

Answer: One of the signs is a bad or rotten egg smell coming out of the exhaust. Other signs include difficulty in starting the car, a rattling sound, failure in emissions tests, poor fuel efficiency, the check engine light is on and stalling. If the converter is partially clogged, a cleaner will clean it and prolong its life.

Question: Can I Use it in Any Type of Car?

Answer: Yes! Some catalytic converters are suitable for any vehicle type including hybrids. Make sure you check the compatibility with your vehicle before you use it. Additionally, the performance of the cleaner is determined by how thick the carbon buildup is and the age of your car. For an older car, get a cleaner that is more concentrated or stronger.

Question: Can a Cleaner Unclog a Catalytic Converter?

Answer: To a certain point. A vehicle that has been driven for more than five years may get clogged to the point it cannot be cleaned. However, new models can easily be unclogged using a cleaner.

Conclusion

The best ten catalytic converters are listed above. Look at their specific ranking and features to know the best for your car. If you do not find one that meets your needs, the buying guide should help you make a different but great choice.

Our top pick is the Sea Foam SF-16. When you consider the multi-functional qualities and versatility, it becomes the indisputable winner. Additionally, it is compatible with all kinds of engines. Last, but not least, the cost is marginally low.

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