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Pelican Technical Article:
Catalytic Converter Replacement

Steve Vernon

 
Time: 4 hours
Tab: $1200
Talent:  
Tools:
22mm wrench, 22mm crow’s-foot wrench, diagonals, 6mm, 5mm Allen, 13mm, 12mm wrench and socket, extensions and universal joints
Applicable Models:
Touareg (2004-07)
Parts Required:
Catalytic converter
Hot Tip:
Take your time it is a tight fit
Performance Gain:
Pass SMOG test
Complementary Modification:
Oil Change
 
   

   
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     Catalytic converters can and do wear out and when they do, your car will not pass a SMOG test. If you are getting an error code or have failed a test and the catalytic needs to be changed you should read this article and consider doing it yourself. It is not a quick or easy job but if you follow the instructions and take your time you will be fine. The cats are attached to the down pipe and have four O-2 sensors in them. The sensors are specific to banks 1-3 and 4-6 and are located pre and post cats, so make sure you order the right ones. The sensors are color coded and the fittings for the pre and post cats are different so it is hard to get them mixed up, but the sensors wire length for banks 1-3 and 4-6 are different, so pay attention to those. If you are reinstalling the sensor, label them and do not mix them up.

     You are going to be working on the exhaust system so make sure the car is cold while you are doing this. Also give yourself enough time as you will not be able to use the car until the job is complete. Take pictures as you go and watch your hands when breaking things loose as it is all a very tight fit. You may want to hit the exhaust hardware with a good penetrating lube a couple of times before you start the job.
The down pipe that holds the two cats connects to the two exhaust manifolds and runs down between the engine and chassis on the right side of the motor (red arrow).
Figure 1
The down pipe that holds the two cats connects to the two exhaust manifolds and runs down between the engine and chassis on the right side of the motor (red arrow).
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Begin by removing the air filter lid, MAF and intake tube.
Figure 2
Begin by removing the air filter lid, MAF and intake tube. Please see our article on these procedures for additional assistance.
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Whether you are going to be reusing your O-2 sensors or installing new ones you want to remove the sensors before removing the pipe and install the sensors after the pipe is in place.
Figure 3
Whether you are going to be reusing your O-2 sensors or installing new ones you want to remove the sensors before removing the pipe and install the sensors after the pipe is in place. Please see our article on O-2 sensor replacement for further instructions.
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Remove the front engine cover by pulling straight up on it (red arrow).
Figure 4
Remove the front engine cover by pulling straight up on it (red arrow).
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Disconnect the vacuum hose that is connected to the tube that runs along the heat shield by squeezing the end and separating them.
Figure 5
Disconnect the vacuum hose that is connected to the tube that runs along the heat shield by squeezing the end and separating them.
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Use a 5mm Allen (red arrow) and remove the two bolts holding the tube to the manifold, then use a 6mm Allen and remove the bracket to manifold bolt (yellow arrow).
Figure 6
Use a 5mm Allen (red arrow) and remove the two bolts holding the tube to the manifold, then use a 6mm Allen and remove the bracket to manifold bolt (yellow arrow).
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Remove the three bolts holding the heat shield to manifold bracket and remove the bracket (red arrow).
Figure 7
Remove the three bolts holding the heat shield to manifold bracket and remove the bracket (red arrow).
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Remove the two 5mm Allen bolts holding the vacuum tube to the pump below the throttle body (yellow arrow) making sure to replace the gasket when installing and remove the vacuum pipe from the heat shield.
Figure 8
Remove the two 5mm Allen bolts holding the vacuum tube to the pump below the throttle body (yellow arrow) making sure to replace the gasket when installing and remove the vacuum pipe from the heat shield.
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Using a 5mm Allen and long extension, remove the forward bolt holding the heat shield to engine (red arrow).
Figure 9
Using a 5mm Allen and long extension, remove the forward bolt holding the heat shield to engine (red arrow).
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Disconnect and remove the throttle body, please see our article on throttle body removal for additional assistance.
Figure 10
Disconnect and remove the throttle body, please see our article on throttle body removal for additional assistance.
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With the throttle body out you can remove the rear 5mm Allen bolt (red arrow) holding the rear of the heat shield.
Figure 11
With the throttle body out you can remove the rear 5mm Allen bolt (red arrow) holding the rear of the heat shield.
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Carefully remove any vacuum lines in your way and remove the heatshield.
Figure 12
Carefully remove any vacuum lines in your way and remove the heatshield.
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Check your hardware and remove the three nuts holding the bank 1-3 (red arrow) and 4-6 (yellow arrow) exhaust manifold to cat pipe.
Figure 13
Check your hardware and remove the three nuts holding the bank 1-3 (red arrow) and 4-6 (yellow arrow) exhaust manifold to cat pipe.
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Remove the under trays (red and yellow arrows).
Figure 14
Remove the under trays (red and yellow arrows). Please see our article on under tray removal for additional instruction.
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Depending on the type of tools you own you will want to remove the three exhaust nuts from above or below (red arrow).
Figure 15
Depending on the type of tools you own you will want to remove the three exhaust nuts from above or below (red arrow).
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There is a bracket that attaches the cats to the engine, check the hardware (ours was 13mm) and remove the bracket support.
Figure 16
There is a bracket that attaches the cats to the engine, check the hardware (ours was 13mm) and remove the bracket support.
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To remove them, first push the pipe down of the exhaust manifold.
Figure 17
To remove them, first push the pipe down of the exhaust manifold.
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You are going to have to take your time and lift and turn them to get them to clear everything, but they will come out without removing any other components.
Figure 18
You are going to have to take your time and lift and turn them to get them to clear everything, but they will come out without removing any other components. The same goes with installing them, get the pipe on the lower stud connections first and then draw the upper pipe to the exhaust manifold. I used a large set of channel locks to lift them the final amount.
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Do not forget to install the new gaskets! You do not want to install the pipe and forget about these or you will be doing it over again.
Figure 19
Do not forget to install the new gaskets! You do not want to install the pipe and forget about these or you will be doing it over again.
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Need to buy parts for this project?
Click here to order parts for your Volkswagen from our parts catalog
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  Applies to: Touareg (2004-07)
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