Unlike when your car is broken into and you discover it immediately as you walk up to see a broken window and items missing.

When a catalytic converter is stolen, you wouldn't even notice by looking at the vehicle. But you 100 percent notice after you start the engine.

For those who don't know exactly what the catalytic converter is used for, it's to reduce the amount of harmful emissions that come from an engine.

And what's inside the catalytic converter that makes them valuable?

According to the Universal Technical Institute, there are valuable metals inside the catalytic converter including 3 to 7 grams of Platinum, 2 to 7 grams of Palladium, and 1 to 2 grams of Rhodium.

Prices for these metals have skyrocketed according to Carfaxwith Platinum receiving $900 per ounce, and Rhodium going for $13,000 per ounce.

Recyclers will pay up to $250 for a regular catalytic converter and up to $1500 for a hybrid vehicle converter.

So you can see why there's a serious problem of catalytic converter thefts, and one of the worst states in the U.S. is our great state of Illinois.

State Farm Insurance based out of Bloomington, Illinois revealed in recent data that thefts of catalytic converters have risen 400 percent since 2019 with these being the top 5 states for thefts:

Catalytic converter theft is currently led by California - with more than 2 out of 10 (24.5%) claims being filed in the Golden State- followed by Texas -with roughly 1 out of 10 (13.58%) of these claims- Illinois (3rd), Washington (4th) and Minnesota (5th). -State Farm Insurance

What are the cars and pickups most targeted in the Midwest for catalytic converter theft according to Carfax?  Here are a few vehicles that may not be where you left them:

  1. 1985-2021 Ford F-Series
  2. 2007-17 Jeep Patriot
  3. 2011-17 Chrysler 200
  4. 2005-21 Chevrolet Equinox
  5. 2008-14 Dodge Avenger
  6. 1990-2022 Ford Econoline
  7. 1997-2020 Honda CR-V
  8. 1999-2021 Chevrolet Silverado
  9. 1987-2019 Toyota Camry
  10. 1989-2020 Honda Accord

Some UTI experts suggest you can deter a tweaker from stealing your catalytic converter if you build a metal cage around it, engrave your VIN number into it, and always park your vehicle in a well-lit area if you don't have a garage.

LOOK: The best minigolf in every state

Using 2022 data from Tripadvisor, Stacker compiled a list of the highest-rated minigolf courses in all 50 states including Washington D.C.

LOOK: Baby names that are illegal around the world

Stacker scoured hundreds of baby name databases and news releases to curate a list of baby names that are illegal somewhere in the world, along with explanations for why they’re banned.

More From Rockford's New Country Q98.5