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I'm starting this thread in an effort to put catalytic converter failure threads in one spot. I did a lot of searching and actually found what the issue with my son's car was before the techs did. I can't help but wonder if the new recall for a certain build of 2013 Velosters shouldn't be expanded. My car is not part of the recall for the ECM reflash. The service adviser said they hadn't heard of a catalytic converter failure issue with the Veloster (never been to a dealership where the service adviser had heard of an issue I had with a car... I must be lucky!) I'm not including threads from other sites but if someone would like to do so please add to! I'd like to create a one stop thread for people experiencing premature catalytic converter failure.

The car is a 2013 NAV with 39,000 miles, DCT and Tech package. It was bought used with 32,000 miles on it.

My son was driving his car recently when it just decided to shut down. He said he saw a puff of smoke, the gauge cluster lit up, and the tach went to zero. The car wouldn't start once it shut down. Never had a CEL come on since we've owned it. I got the car on a trailer, brought it back thinking something electrically had happened since the passenger side headlight would not turn off (weird). Checked the battery and it was low so charged the battery but unhooked to get the headlight to turn off. Once charged, reconnected battery terminals and the car fired right up. Charge voltage was 14.3 so no alternator issue. Car would idle fine but wouldn't rev up. Noticed a new sound in the engine that wasn't their prior to the engine shutting down. Brought the car to the dealer. I had the service writer start the car so they could see and hear what was going on. His first words when the engine started "that doesn't sound right". They spent the better part of the day diagnosing and found the catalytic converter had failed. Viewing from the bottom you couldn't see any issue but from the manifold side there was debris coming out. So at 39K miles the cat is fried.... very odd. The catalytic converter was replaced under the 80K emission warranty but I was told the engine sound diagnosis would be on my dime. I got Hyundai customer care involved and was told they would cover the cost to diagnose the engine noise. Dealer checked with their regional service rep who says "they can't do that" so I'm in a holding pattern right now while we figure out who is going to cover the diagnosis of the sound and the repair once they figure out something is wrong inside the engine.

My thought on the engine noise is that the cat suffered a catastrophic meltdown due to temps which caused a severe back pressure on the engine which caused some internal damage. The tech that worked on the car said that wouldn't happen to which I asked "then why would the noise appear after the meltdown?"... No good answer there.

https://www.veloster.org/forum/8-hyundai-veloster-general-discussion/88350-clogged-catalytic-converter-72k.html
https://www.veloster.org/forum/9-hyundai-veloster-engine-transmission/67025-engine-knocking-catalytic-converter-plugged-aftermarket-exhaust.html (2 with engine issues in this thread)
https://www.veloster.org/forum/9-hyundai-veloster-engine-transmission/81474-2016-nav-blown-engine-catalytic-converter.html (obviously engine issues here)
https://www.veloster.org/forum/37-hyundai-veloster-issues-tsbs-recalls/86858-catalytic-converter.html://www.veloster.org/forum/9-hyundai-veloster-engine-transmission/30945-engine-causing-catalytic-converter-throw-cel.html (I'm guessing the failed cat took out the original engine here as well as the second person at the end with similar issue)
https://www.veloster.org/forum/68-hyundai-veloster-intake-exhaust/64825-can-k-n-cai-cause-catalytic-converter-prematurely-fail.html
https://www.veloster.org/forum/68-hyundai-veloster-intake-exhaust/64825-can-k-n-cai-cause-catalytic-converter-prematurely-fail.html
 

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Yup, you are right. I have heard of this issue over and over again, and it is not limited to the NA's Once they replace the cat, the engine will burn oil. some engines blow up.

My theory on why this happens is using cheap gas, short trips that don't allow the car to fully warm up, shifting at low RPM, not romping on the throttle to blow the carbon buildup out of the exhaust system. None of these are the drivers fault, they should be able to drive the car the way they want. But it's just a way of keeping the cats clean in a GDI engine.

I am guilty of most of what is listed above because I have a 5 mile commute to work in slow traffic. I do use top tier gas. Every month I try and hit the freeway accelerating hard on the onramp. You should see the black soot I leave behind me.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
I called Hyundai customer service and talked with a very friendly rep. I explained my issue and was told Hyundai would cover the cost to diagnose the new sound in the engine. I explained that an engine tear down might be necessary and told them the dealership said it could run in the 5-600 range to diagnose. I was told all would be covered. I talked with the dealership service adviser who said "they can't approve that". I'm not being told by the dealership that Hyundai will only cover one hour of diagnosis which I seriously doubt will be enough time to properly diagnose what happened. I'm going to place another call to Hyundai and see what they say.
Meanwhile, if anyone has experienced a catalytic converter failure or engine failure where the cat was replaced, please chime in with information on exactly what happened. I'm planning to contact NHTSA to file a report of what happened just in case the recall should be expanded.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Kind of an interesting conversation with Hyundai customer service. I asked the person if my engine diagnostic was only approved for one hour. I was told there is no time limit on the diagnostic and that "escalation" approved a full engine diagnostic without a time limitation. I was told to contact the dealer service manager. I contacted the service manager and was told only one hour of engine diagnostic was approved. I politely told him that based on my conversation with a customer service rep I don't believe that to be accurate and went on to explain the phone conversation I just had with customer care. We'll see where things go from here.
 

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I have a 2013 NAV , bought used (i'm 3rd owner) @ around 53k.

I've kept it clean and reg maintenance, oil, rotation, brakes and nothing majorly bad has happened yet.

Maybe some hesitation when first stepping on the gas, but I use the Techron fuel cleaner and I believe that helps keep the CC clean in good shape.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
As I understand it, my cat didn't fail because it was dirty, it failed because it simply fell apart and plugged itself. As I understand it, engine tuning plays a direct role in how hot the cat gets. Cat gets too hot and it simply starts disintegrating.
 

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I heard back from the dealer today. Hyundai is covering 80% of the cost to replace the engine with a short block. I'm on the hook for 20% or about $1000. I guess it's better than being left with a crapped out engine but it's hard to feel good about this when it was a failure on their part rather than mine.
 

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what exactly went wrong in the engine?
 

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what exactly went wrong in the engine?
Beats me! They didn't say exactly what was wrong. They noted that a valve was a bit tighter than it should be. They said Hyundai asked for a picture of the spark plugs.. then said HMA said a new engine was in order. I'd like to know what happened too!
 

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I don't see how a short block is going to solve a valve problem, but good for you making some headway. I might suggest you ask them what the warranty is on the rebuild. They should give you at least 1 year, 12,000 miles on anything engine related and after, top to bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I don't see how a short block is going to solve a valve problem, but good for you making some headway. I might suggest you ask them what the warranty is on the rebuild. They should give you at least 1 year, 12,000 miles on anything engine related and after, top to bottom.
I'm going to be pressing someone for more than a 1 year warranty. If you look at the thread about the 2016 that lost an engine, I believe he was on his 4th engine in under 50,000 miles.
I'm also going to be pressing for 100% coverage on the engine failure. I did some searching and the 1.6 in the Kia Soul had the exact same issue that I and others here have experienced.

"The largest of three recalls posted on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website Thursday covers nearly 379,000 Kia Soul small SUVs from 2012 through 2016 with 1.6-liter engines. Documents show that high exhaust gas temperatures can damage the catalytic converters, which control pollution. That can cause abnormal combustion and damage pistons and connecting rods. A failed connecting rod can pierce the engine block and cause oil leaks that can cause fires."
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I took the time to complete a NHTSA complaint since the engine failed at highway speed. I'm hoping that more people with this failure see this thread and file a complaint even if the issue was covered under full warranty. There is clearly an issue here that needs to be addressed. It seems the exact same issue the Soul was recalled for extends beyond just the Soul IMO.
 

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Update: I spoke with a Hyundai case manager last week. I asked for more coverage for the engine replacement or for more than the standard 12 month/ 12,000 mile warranty and both were denied. The concern here is that the engine and catalytic converter will be replaced but the issue that caused the premature failure of the catalytic converter hasn't been addressed. It seems to me that a sudden meltdown of the catalytic converter that caused enough back pressure to shut the engine down and damage the internals should be addressed. Since buying the car, there was never an event that triggered a check engine light. The day the catalytic converter failed completely the only warning that the cat was plugged came at the moment of complete failure. There's something not right here. My thought is that I'll have my son drive the car until the 12/12000 warranty is about to expire and then trade it off on a different brand. It's a bit disappointing since I like the design and features of the car but I can't have my son in a car that I have no confidence in.
 

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Hopefully my last update. We got the car back today with a new short block. The mechanic said when he took the engine out he found a spun bearing with a lot of debris in the oil. He said the oil was very thick. Not sure if this was caused when the cat failed causing the back pressure but this is what he found. The engine is nice and quiet now! All told Hyundai covered 80% and my out of pocket was only $650. I guess I can't be too upset since the car was out of warranty. I'm still a bit concerned about what caused the cat to fail so quickly. They didn't reflash the ECU so it's still running the same tune. I'm considering a cat delete but don't want to do anything until the 12/12000 engine warranty is up.
 

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Drive it like you stole it. Shift at higher RPM Just my theory, but I think when you lug the engine the cat(s) get clogged with soot. IF it's a DCT, every once in a while, put it in manual and let her rip and look in the rear view, you'll see lots of black soot being blown out

Good Luck and im happy you got this resolved.
 

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Drive it like you stole it. Shift at higher RPM Just my theory, but I think when you lug the engine the cat(s) get clogged with soot. IF it's a DCT, every once in a while, put it in manual and let her rip and look in the rear view, you'll see lots of black soot being blown out

Good Luck and im happy you got this resolved.
For what it's worth, this issue wasn't a matter of soot buildup. There was never a CEL for o2 sensors. If the cat was building up with soot there should have been an o2 sensor code that should have brought on the CEL. This was a sudden failure of the catalytic converter. The tech that worked on the car couldn't believe there wasn't a single stored code in the ECU. Whatever happened, happened almost immediately.
 

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I started a discussion early but was turned over to this one, so I am reposting:

I have a 2016 Base model and at 14408 miles I had a clogged catalytic converter, I lost all power, it went no where. Towed to the dealer (under warranty) at the dealer the service writer jumped in turned it on, put it in gear (went no where), put his foot into and car started blowing white smoke BAD!!! Was called the following day stating all fixed it was the cat..
Ok picked it up and the car has run rough ever since. Noticed at 30,000 that I had no oil (BURNING IT!) and so I had my oil change done which it was time. 1,000 miles later clogged cat again. Had it towed again and replaced the CAT again!
Now at 32,500 I have burned thru 2.5 quarts of oil and I'm starting to loose power, it was hot yesterday and I could not even run my AC due to loss of power.
Dealer wants an oil consumption test done, so I'm hoping the car lasts long enough for them to get the information they need, but my luck I will be towed to the dealer again with a blocked cat and this will be 2,500 miles after the last one was replaced.

Anyone have any ideas why this keeps happening? The car has 32,624 miles.
 

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So my foot to the firewall Eurobeat driving style is the only reason I got 86k out of my catcon?
My 2014 base nav dct has 210,xxx. Both cats are original!!! Other than 2 coils, I've really only done "preventative maintenance" ( pcv, plugs, battery, breaks, ect) I only use lucus synthetic oil 5w20, lucus oil stabilizer with a k&n oil filter (or mobil one filter) and I run "pure gas" (ethanol free) 91 octane 80% of the time.. (ethanol +GDI= carbon) I've done numerous test and pure gas causes ALOT less carbon build up on my exhaust tips. (I use to drive 200+ miles a day for work hwy miles 70-85mph) less carbon emissions = less problems.. also about every 30k miles or so I do a induction cleaning (CRC or seafoam). Smokes like crazy! A few mods, cai, carvan exhaust with resonator delete, 60mm TB....

My nav does have a few problems tho.. 1)oil consumption is thru the roof (1qt about every 500 miles or so)
2)Oil on my cylinder 1 plug ( compression test very soon)

I've owned her for roughly 2.5 years (40k miles on her when I drove off the lot) and from day one I've drove the balls off of her. Lol.... at first I hated the dct! So I research everything I could about how the dct functions ( it's a electronically controlled manual with 2 dry clutch plates) so on take off, if you have it in neutral, rev it to around 3k rpm, slap it into drive (flooring it at the same time) THEN over to sports mode and down one (1st gear) and off you go.. tires squealing and all.. ( I do this ALL the time.. I have videos).. also I haven't touched my transmission ( original fluid/gear oil)
honestly I'm AMAZED that ive put this many miles on my car... Hyundai has stepped their game up
 

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2013 NAV here as well. Bought the car with 40,000 on it and was curious about all the soot on the bumper after a few months, so I started researching and learned some things about these particular GDI builds. They reposition the fuel injectors below the intake valve so the valves never get washed and build up carbon, but makes the EPA happy about efficiency and pollution. They also tend to run rich if they're idling. Blow by is intense with the GDI engines and the carbon will build up around the piston rings, apparently as early as 40,000 or less, if it was driven by a grandma (like mine before me). Just based off of what I have read about carbon build up the cat could've received a meteor of burning carbon that potentially was already plugged with hot carbon which lead to catastrophic failure of the engine unfortunately, in your case.

Intake valves are a known source of failure with GDI because of Carbon. I'm guessing the combination of the valves being on shaky ground and the meteors that inevitably caused failure to the cat had a terrible combo effect.

When my exhaust was replaced the mechanic told me the resonator was completely clogged and I knew exactly why. Heat and pressure from stomping on the accelerator will help clear this out a little I hear. I try to floor it every day as I round the corner to go home from work. I also use BG products for preventative maintenance. I know it's too late for you, but maybe others will take note.

TL;DR: I think Carbon build up caused this even though you had no warning. These engines seem to produce a lot of it.
 
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