Changes to new auto emissions legislation scheduled for 2009 the ‘Euro 5’ standards, will make particulate filters as commonplace in diesel auto exhausts as catalytic converters are on petrol autos.
The objective is an eighty% reduction in diesel particulate (soot) emissions, but the technology’s not with no problems roadside assistance patrols are already getting named to automobiles with the particulate filter warning light-weight illuminated, which generally indicates a partial blockage of the DPF filter.
Evidently, modifications to driving styles might be essential for maximum reward from these emission-minimizing methods.
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Diesel Particulate filters (DPF) or ‘traps’ do just that, they catch bits of soot in the exhaust.
As with any filter (consider of the bag in your vacuum cleaner) they have to be emptied routinely to maintain efficiency. For a DPF this method is known as ‘regeneration’ the amassed soot is burnt off at higher temperature to go away only a little ash residue. Regeneration may be possibly passive or energetic.
Passive regeneration – Passive regeneration takes place automatically on motorway-kind operates when the exhaust temperature is large. Several autos do not get this type of use although so companies have to design-in ‘active’ regeneration exactly where the motor management laptop (European) requires management of the process.
Active regeneration – When the soot loading in the filter reaches a established limit (about 45%) the European can make modest changes to the gas injection timing to boost the exhaust temperature and initiate regeneration. If the journey’s a little bit quit/begin the regeneration may not comprehensive and the warning gentle will illuminate to show that the DPF is partially blocked.
It should be possible to start off a complete regeneration and distinct the warning gentle basically by driving for 10 minutes or so at speeds increased than 40mph.
If you ignore the mild and keep driving in a fairly gradual, quit/start pattern soot loading will carry on to create up till all around 75% when you can assume to see other dashboard warning lights illuminate too. At this level driving at speed by yourself will not be adequate and the vehicle will have to go to a vendor for regeneration.
If warnings are even now dismissed and soot loading carries on to improve then the most probably result will be a new DPF costing close to £1000.
Largely city dependent driving
If your possess vehicle use or lease car use is mostly town-primarily based, end/start driving it would be smart to decide on petrol instead than danger the headache of incomplete DPF regeneration.
The most typical variety of DPF functions an integrated oxidising catalytic converter and is positioned really near to the engine the place exhaust gases will still be relatively scorching so that passive regeneration is feasible.
There’s not constantly room close to the engine though so some producers use a diverse sort of DPF which depends on a fuel additive to decrease the ignition temperature of the soot particles so that the DPF can be found more from the motor.
The additive is saved in a separate tank and is routinely blended with the gasoline whenever you fill up. Small portions are necessary however so a litre of additive should handle about two,800 litres of gasoline, enough to cover 25,000 miles at 40mpg.
With this type of DPF regeneration will be initiated by the Eu every single three hundred miles or so relying on vehicle use and will just take 5 to 10 minutes to total. You should not discover everything other than perhaps a puff of white smoke from the exhaust when the process is completed.
The AA has observed evidence of DPF systems failing to regenerate – even on vehicles – that are utilized mostly on motorways. Their conclusion is that on cars with a extremely higher sixth gear motor revs are way too lower to make ample exhaust temperature, but occasional more challenging driving in reduce gears must be enough to bum off the soot in this kind of situations.
Examine the handbook
If you purchase or lease a car with a DPF fitted it really is essential to read through the pertinent section of the car handbook so that you recognize precisely what steps to just take if the warning light-weight illuminates and how, if at all, your driving design may possibly need to be altered to guarantee greatest DPF effectiveness and existence.