If you own a diesel-powered car, then you need to understand what diesel particulate filters are. After all, they play a crucial role in ensuring that your vehicle is able to function optimally. Without regular DPF maintenance, you might end up having to deal with costly repairs later on down the road. So, in this post, we’re going to discuss what a DPF particulate is and why it’s absolutely essential that you clean it on schedule.
What Is a DPF Filter?
The combustion process of diesel engines generates a lot of soot. Of course, there’s no reason to worry about the harm that it causes because it is the DPF’s responsibility to trap it. In 2009, DPFs became a standard for diesel vehicles. However, long before that, auto manufacturers had fitted specific models with this technology.
Do All Diesel Cars Have a DPF?
If the vehicle was built after 2009, then you can expect it to have a DPF. As we’ve mentioned, DPFs became a standard for all diesel cars in that year.
How Do I Know if I Have a Blocked Diesel Particulate Filter?
If you usually drive your car short distances and at low speeds, then your diesel particulate filter will be more susceptible to blockage. This is because it does not allow your vehicle to meet the requirements for the filter to clean itself. Also, DPFs can prematurely fail because of poor servicing. The filter’s lifespan depends on the application of the vehicle. For instance, the engine filter of a Cummins ISX15 has a cleaning interval of up to 400,000 to 600,000 miles.
Now, if you do not maintain your DPF regularly, it may fail sooner. Another thing to remember is that using the wrong type of oil can cause filter blockage. Other reasons why it may malfunction include using low-quality fuel, conducting performance modifications, and operating the vehicle on a low fuel level.
So, how can you tell if your DPF is already blocked? Well, one surefire indicator is the orange light that illuminates on your dashboard. Once the DPF light starts blinking, it means that your filter is already blocked. When this happens, you will need to bring your car into a service centre immediately for regeneration.
A DPF filters two primary types of particulates. As such, it will also require two types of cleaning. During a regeneration, the process involves converting carbon to carbon dioxide to clean out the soot. The technician then removes the filter and cleans it in a machine with compressed air to get rid of all the ash.
How Often Do You Need to Clean a DPF?
Various factors determine how often you should clean your DPF. Among the most obvious reasons include the gallons of diesel burned, the mileage, and the number of hours that the motor has been running. On the other hand, some other factors can also come into play. Examples include the service conditions and the state of the motor. In reality, the cleaning interval varies, depending on the type of vehicle.
Another critical thing to remember about DPF cleaning, or forced regeneration, is the fact that it is different from a passive or active filter regeneration in a car. Indeed, it is essential to perform a proper regeneration. However, the process does not remove ash from the DPF. A lot of people mistakenly assume that when they press the Regen button, it will dissolve the soot and push it out of the exhaust system. The truth is, the filter collects the ash, eventually causing its deterioration over time. So, you’ll need to remove a DPF from a vehicle in order to give it a proper cleaning.
What Happens in a DPF Cleaning Service?
When you bring your vehicle in to German Auto Meisters, we will use specialised equipment to give your DPF the proper cleaning it requires. Our system is unique in the sense that it uses high-pressure to disintegrate the blockage of the cells. We also use extreme suction in order to collect the soot.
Now, if your filter is immensely loaded with soot, it may require exposure to a baking process. We use equipment to expose the DPF to high temperatures. Consequently, the process loosens the contaminants, making it easier to remove. In most cases, blasting the filter allows us to bring the DPF close to its mint condition. Of course, once the service is done and you have a clean filter, you can expect your vehicle to run more efficiently. Not only will you be able to save money on maintenance, but you can also avoid experiencing extended downtime. When you do not neglect regular DPF cleaning, you can henceforth avoid the hefty cost of a full replacement filter.
Ideally, you should get DPF maintenance and cleaning every 50,000km. Moreover, you should only place your trust in the leading car service centre in Perth. Here at German Auto Meisters, we have a team of qualified and experienced mechanics working on our side. What’s more, we use premium equipment to ensure that your DPF will receive the best service possible.
To schedule a routine DPF cleaning and maintenance, Contact German Auto Meisters today!