What is a DPF?
A Diesel Particulate Filter (or DPF for short) is a filter found in the downpipe section of the exhaust and is specifically designed to reduce the amount of Diesel Particulate Matter (Soot) passing through. The objective of this filter is to create cleaner / more eco friendly exhaust gases being release into the atmosphere.
The purpose of this filter is to reduce pollutants resulting from combustion from being released to the atmosphere...
A diesel particulate filter will gradually become restricted and become more clogged up as a normal part of it's service life, a process called regeneration is designed to occasionally 'clear out' the particulate filter. Unfortunately this needs specific driving conditions and when these are not met, the degree to which the filter is blocked can surpass the engine managements ability to regenerate the filter - leading to problems with power loss (see detailed list below) and even in the absolute worst case, risk to the car due to overheating of the filter.
The images on the right show different examples of the a DPF, as you can imagine with the first image this is very restrictive and easy to block causing the fault codes and running problems on the car.
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A blocked DPF can cause many problems including loss of power, economy and throttle response. With more extreme cases, filters that are extremely blocked filters can cause the engine not to start at all.
Symptoms and Fault CodesThere are multiple faults codes and symptoms that can point towards a faulty / blocked DPF.
There are two solutions when you experience a blocked DPF.
Stainless DPF Downpipes
Here at Darkside Developments we offer a full DPF hardware and software removal service for all VW, Audi, Seat & Skoda TDi engines. For certain makes and models we can offer a complete Stainless Steel Downpipe which completely removes the DPF section of the exhaust and fits directly in place of the standard downpipe. For the models we can’t offer these downpipes to off the shelf we have all the facilities in our workshop to custom make them on the car.
See here for a DIY DPF Removal Guide: http://www.vwwatercooled.com.au/forums/f28/dpf-removal-guide-71644.html
Once removed you can then send us your ECU to remove the software faults stored on the cars memory. Follow the steps in this listing: http://www.darksidedevelopments.co.uk/products/ecu-dpf-software-removal-service.html
For cars that have only just started to show symptoms that the DPF is blocking you may be able to get away with a regeneration. If this fails to work the DPF may be too far gone for this process.
After deleting the DPF we are also able to delete the EGR Valve, this valve is used to lower the emitions of the car but are often prone for failing. The valve works by recirculating some of the exhaust gases back into the engine through the air intake system, reducing the amount of emitions that exit the car.
The problem lies with the exhaust fumes that contain carbon deposits, these fumes are constantly being recirculated through the engine which over time will cause a build-up of the carbon deposits in the intake manifold and other in other parts including the EGR valve. This build up in the valve is often what causes them to fail.
There are two ways of removing the EGR System from the vehicle. The first way is by using one of our EGR Delete Race Pipe Kits, these can be found on our website here: http://www.darksidedevelopments.co.uk/egr-valves-and-parts/
Some cars may have a different EGR Valves or ones that are built into the inlet manifold. If this is the case we can still remove the EGR using blanking plates.
Once the valve is either removed or blanked off the vehicles ECU will no longer get a signal from the EGR Valve causing the emmisions workshop light to appear on the dash board. We can remove this by reprogramming the EGR software on the ECU.
Benifits of removing the EGR Valve
The EGR Valve CANNOT be removed on vehicles that still have the DPF Filter present, doing so would soon block the DPF.
Post your ECU
We can also remove the DPF software from the ECU without the car in our workshop. If you want to carry out the DPF removal yourself from home or a garage but don't have the equipment to remove the software, you can now send us your ECU and we will remove the software and send you the ECU back in the post, ready to just plug and play go.
See here for our ECU DPF Software Removal Service: http://www.darksidedevelopments.co.uk/products/ecu-dpf-software-removal-service.html
DPF Workshop Services
Will removing my DPF cause any problems?
No, in fact having a DPF will cause more problems than removing it altogether. Once the DPF is removed there is no need to worry about regenerations, power loss or expensive bills from the dealers.
How long does it take?
Usually if we have the car in the workshop for 8am we will be able to do a full DPF removal (hardware and software) in the same day. If we are also remapping the car this can sometimes spill over into a second day as all our maps are custom and can require some fine tweaking. The time can also be dependant on the make and model of the car.
Does it affect fuel economy?
A blocked DPF will use more fuel than usual as it is making the engine work a lot harder, removing the DPF will help the exhaust gases flow freely which in most cases will see an increase in MPG.