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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
99,570 miles
Total Complaints:
11 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. dealer replaced the catalytic converter (4 reports)
  2. not sure (3 reports)
  3. replaced with aftermarket part (3 reports)
  4. dealer replaced the converter. (1 reports)
2002 Chevrolet Impala exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2002 Chevrolet Impala Owner Comments

problem #11

Nov 012014

Impala S 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,526 miles


Converter plugged up and blew. It started off making a screeching noise and prevented acceleration. Eventually hit the point where it couldn't get above 50km/h and needed to be replaced. Mechanic straight-piped it shortly after.

- , Halifax, NS, Canada

problem #10

Apr 012011

Impala LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,000 miles

the whole exhaust system had to be replaced. the insulation plugged everything up, the car would not accelerate. everything was replaced, including muffler, 02 sensors and converter. Unfortunately I found out after the fact that this would have been a warranty repair but I was never notified.

- , Dc, DC, USA

problem #9

Oct 162008

Impala LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

Took the car to CARX (what a joke) "fixed" the catalytic converter by sawing off pipes and rewelding. Supposed to have 1 year warranty, 6 months later same problem, they would not honor warranty. Had replaced again at a mom & pop shop, he didn't understand why this was happening again. Souldn't the converter last for the lifetime of the car? The last one installed has a lifetime warranty.

- , Eureka, MO, USA

problem #8

Nov 022009

Impala 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles


oh man my car broke AGAIN,... why do i love it so much... so i was driving normally, just got back from china king and my car was running fine. Went in the house came back out to drive my girlfriend home and tried to back out. my car started fine but was CHUGGING when i put it into gear. so i tried to back out and the problem seemed to get worse. then when i got to around 60mph it quieted down a whole lot. every time i would stop and accelerate again it would do the same thing. i thought it was my transmission???!!?! when i got home i smelled an awful SULFUR smell. I knew that from this i could most likely identify the problem online. Indeed... sulfur or "rotten eggs" smell are a likely CATALYTIC CONVERTER problem. At this point im thinkin oh man 800 dollars to get one put in.. not good. so i stumbled upon whatayaknow. they had a solution. call GM and tell them you heard about a CAMPAIGN for a FREE CATALYTIC CONVERTER. if your car is under 120,000 miles and under 10 years old GM will replace it for free. So i scheduled my appointment and will post back with my good or bad results. considering my car is just over 120,000 this could be interesting.


- , Akron, NY, USA

problem #7

Aug 012009

Impala LS 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,790 miles

I bought a 2002 impala 2 years ago hoping i woudn't have to dump any major money into it. Drove up a hill one day and it didnt want to go, brought it to the dealer for the recall and had them check the cat, they told me it was plugged, told me 800 to fix, i told them park it outside, they would not cover it it had 97780 miles. Called a local garage, and they put an after market on for me for 450. Gm knows there is a problem, if ur car has less them 80000 miles on it go get the catalytic converter checked, they will fix it for free. they can do a test to tell if it is going or not. I would not put another gm cat on my car. They know there is a problem.

- , Thomaston, CT, USA

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problem #6

Mar 302009

Impala LX 3.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 260,000 miles

Help! We replaced the first catalytic converter at 80,000 miles. Have had to replace the converter 4 more times since then. Also, road mileage has dropped from 30 mpg average to 24 mpg average. Should note that factory engine was replaced at 215000 miles with a certified rebuilt GM engine. Rebuilt engine has given no problems.Over the life of the car, O2 sensor replacement has been too numerous to count.What causes these impalas to chew up converters?

- , Rougemont, NC, USA

problem #5

Feb 232009

Impala 3.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles



Here's the real issue - You can't call Chevy to get your catalytic converter replaced under a "RECALL" or "EXTENDED WARRANTY", because that's not what THEY call it. If you ask for a replacement under those conditions, they just tell you they don't exist. They actually call it a "CAMPAIGN".

Call the Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center at (800) 630-2438. Give them your VIN # and they will determine if your vehicle qualifies for the free replacement under their campaign......which, by the way, includes extending the current 8-yr /80,000 catalytic converter warranty to 10-yr /120,000 miles.

When they determined my car was covered (with 80,810 miles), they called the local dealer and told them (what I'm sure they already knew) and I had my catalytic converter replaced for free the next day. That same dealer service manager told me the day before my car was NOT covered because it had over 80,000 miles.......(yes, 810 miles over the limit).

It's all about the proper wording. Also the letter I have a copy of from General Motors supposedly went out to all original owners and it states they are not replacing the catalytic converters just because they are covered under warranty. They are only replacing them if it's failing - which usually results in a very noticeable lack of power, engine overheating, etc.

PASS THE WORD, because this same "campaign" also covers 2001-2002 Impalas, Monte Carlos, Pontiac Grand Prix's and Buick Regals.

- , San Diego, CA, USA

problem #4

Oct 162008

Impala LS 3800 V6 Ser Ii

  • Automatic transmission
  • 116,950 miles

Wondering if this is happening alot, mechanic said that this should not have happened that some other problem was putting to much fuel in the exhaust. This is the first problem that I have had with the 2002 Impala.

- , Fernley, NV, USA

problem #3

May 252007

(reported on)

Impala 3.4L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,000 miles

I called the dealer and told them my diagnosis. I dropped the car off immediately. It was fixed 5 hours later. The cost was $0.00.

This was great compared to some of my prior experiences.

- , Mountainside, NJ, USA

problem #2

Jun 152005

Impala 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles

Had to replace the catalytic converter because it broke down...just like everything else on the Impala.

- , Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #1

Nov 162006

(reported on)

Impala LS V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 57,000 miles

All the sudden, on the way home from a long weekend, the car began to struggle when I would accelerate. Once the car got going, everything appeared to fine, but the car continued to struggle every time I would accelerate from a stop. I took the car to the dealer, and they said it is a common problem with the Impala-a design flaw in the converter-and that he had replaced at least 6 catalytic converters in the last three months because they were becoming clogged. It was such a common problem, that the dealer even stocks the converters now! The dealer took care of the problem, so I didn't pay for it, but it's just one more thing in the long line of things that have gone wrong with this car since I have owned it (fuel pump went bad, brakes have never worked right, the BCM, or computer, has been replaced TWICE, etc, etc...).

- , Ottawa, OH, USA

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