If you’re driving a modern diesel-powered vehicle, you’ll that it’s fitted with a DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter). The DPF works by collecting soot particulates created by the engine, preventing them from being released into the atmosphere. However, the DPF can only contain so much and unlike any other type of filter, you can’t just remove and give it a clean. And this is where the process of regeneration comes into play.
The vehicle’s Engine Management System is responsible for the process of regeneration. This occurs automatically when the vehicle is able to operate under heavy load for a certain period of time, such as a long road trip. Driving conditions such as these allow exhaust temperatures to reach a point where they’re high enough to vaporise or convert any soot within the DPF into CO2, which in turn is safely released from the exhaust system.
If a long drive out on the open road isn’t sufficient in getting the exhaust system up to optimum temps, the Engine Management System enters its Active DPF Regeneration mode. This works by injecting a small amount of diesel fuel right after combustion which raises exhaust temps to the required amount to initiate regeneration.
Diesel vehicles perform at their best under heavy load, whether it be working the vehicle hard on the worksite, or out on a long drive on the open road. Urban driving conditions take their toll on diesel engines, preventing the engine and exhaust system from reach optimum exhaust temperatures, resulting in less efficient fuel combustion and more exhaust soot and particulates being produced.
Urban driving conditions such as short drive and stop start traffic can also interrupt the process of regeneration as exhaust temps aren’t able to reach a point where regeneration can be effective. If this is too often the case, or regeneration is unable to be initiated at all, the DPF warning light will come on.
Once this light comes on, the next course of action is essentially to drive the vehicle in a way that can trigger regeneration. Generally, a 20-minute drive keeping the revs above 2000RPM should do the trick, however this procedure differs from vehicle to vehicle, so check your owner’s manual and find out what your vehicle’s manufacturer recommends. Once this light comes, it’s important to take action as soon as possible. Ignoring for long enough can cause the DPF to become blocked beyond repair. In this case, your only option is to replace it, which can be quite a painful, and costly exercise.
Thankfully there are options, if you need to replace your DPF Ryco maybe able to offer an aftermarket direct fit replacement saving you money on costly OEM parts.
Another piece of preventative maintenance that can aid in keeping your DPF clean is fitting your vehicle with the Ryco RCC351 Catch-Can System. Slotting between the PCV valve and the air intake system, the Ryco Catch-Can system works by separating carbon-causing crankcase vapours from the crankcase air, preventing any extra oil and soot from entering your vehicle’s DPF.
Keeping your vehicle’s DPF clean is simpler than you might’ve thought with all that’s really required being a drive where the vehicle is under heavy load for an extended period of time. And with the appropriate preventative maintenance with the help of Ryco, you can keep your diesel vehicle running at it’s absolute best for years to come.
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