Check Engine Light Redux

You guys here recently helped me with a check engine light problem I had with my 96 Lincoln Town Car. (I appreciated the all of the advice, by the way.)
I had Autozone check the codes and they came up with P0430 (I think), which indicated a bad sensor--or at worst a bad catalytic converter.
It turns out that when I filled the car with gas the light went out. Then when I got low on gas again the light went on, but this time it didn't go back out when I filled it up.
I took it to an electrical specialist, and he put it on the machine and told me that he got readings from both sensors. One of the sensors was flat and smooth and the other one was gyrating all over the place. He said that if he didn't get any reading at all then the sensor might be the problem, but since one sensor was stable and the other was gyrating that my problem was probably a bad or shot catalytic converter. The car has 178K miles on it so he wasn't surprised. He said they usually last anywhere from 75 to 100K miles before having to be replaced.
He reset the check engine light and suggested I put in some Chevron Techron additive into the gasoline next time I fill it up. That could "possibly" help, but chances are the catalytic converter will have to be replaced.
It will probably cost anywhere from $400 to $600.
I asked him what would happen if I let it go for a while, and he said nothing. It doesn't affect the running of the car at all, but I won't be able to pass an emissions test. That's it. It has nothing to do with engine performance whatsoever.
Comments?
Thanks,
Tom
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The guy is wrong. The front sensor should "clock" as the computer adjusts the mixture. The cat cleans up the exhaust, so the second sensor only "clocks" if the cat is bad. I'd suspect either a dirty MAF sensor or dirty injectors - which techron MAY help. The MAF is fragile, but CAN be cleaned with intake cleaner and alcohol.
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<clare at snyder.on.ca> wrote in message wrote:

Lincolnsonline.com, Tech section to learn how to clean MAF
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Tom G wrote:

Aweful lot of work for an old car. Damn emissions!
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Damned people that like to breath....
Why do so many think it is emissions requirements that are "bad". Does anyone reading this actually want to breath air filled with carbon monoxide, oxides of nitrogen and God knows what else?
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Jim Warman wrote:

I suppose not. I just like driving junk i guess and polluting your air :)
I suppose, cars are probably the number 2 polluter of the environment.... i'm not sure if my car would pass or not... my check engine light comes on... 93 crown vic, perhaps it is my maf as everyone always suggests...
i have never bothered to have the code read, as it comes on after 15 minutes of driving sometimers, then goes out shortly after.
Seems to come on more on town driving, rather than highway.
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What gets me though is a car that gets 50+mpg and just BARELY fails on HC or CO or NOx is putting out less of each than a monster SUV or sedan getting half the mileage, even if it is well within it's limits.
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