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What is a dpf - or a diesel particulate filter?

There is a particulate filter for diesel cars which helps to reduce the amount of soot particles from the car's exhaust. It has been compulsory by EU law since 2009 for all manufacturers to install a diesel particulate filter in the exhaust for all diesel cars.

In the filter, there are pressure hoses which measure the pressure difference on each side of the dpf and report any errors if they occur.

A dpf helps keep your diesel car environmentally friendly. In many ways, the diesel particulate filter resembles the function of a catalytic converter which cleans exhaust gases in both gasoline and diesel cars.

Diesel particulate filter problems

How to clean dpf filter
If you experience any issues with your car’s dpf, there are a number of steps you can take. The spare part itself is expensive, so sometimes a diesel particulate filter cleaning can be an option. The price for this is a bit lower than the price you have to pay for getting a new diesel particulate filter installed. And if the filter is clogged, a dpf cleaner can be a good alternative.

There are a few ways to clean a diesel particulate filter. You can buy a chemical additive that is poured directly into the filter so that the dpf is cleaned out. The diesel particulate filter cleaner comes in handy bottles which are specifically designed to make it easy to pour the cleaner straight into your fuel tank. If you need to know how to use dpf cleaner, you can read more in our blog post about how to clean a dpf filter yourself.

Other options on how to clear diesel particulate filter
There are other ways to "clean" the filter, but your mechanic knows how to clear a blocked dpf filter. One thing he can do is to do a so-called regeneration, where the diesel particulate filter is heated to high temperatures so that the particles are burned out. This is usually how to regenerate diesel particulate filter. Remember, however, to check what your diesel particulate filter is made of - if it is an older product, it may melt during the regeneration process.

Next, the filter can also be attempted disassembled (if possible) and sent to the manufacturer, where it is passed through a special liquid that washes out the particles.

Despite the different ways of trying to clean the diesel particulate filter, dpf cleaning in general may not be the best solution because it does not prevent the filter from getting clogged again. Sometimes it is not enough for the filter to function optimally again - and then it must be changed.

What does a dpf replacement cost?

The price for the spare part itself ranges between £400 and £1000.

As mentioned, a replacement of the particulate filter is more expensive than a dpf cleaning, but sometimes it is necessary. It takes a long time to dismantle and install a new dpf, so you often pay between £800 and £1200 for the entire repair, depending on how new the car is.

When should a diesel particulate filter be changed? Fortunately, very rarely. The filter is built to last for a very long time, preferably for the car’s entire lifetime. But keep an eye on whether the diesel particulate filter warning light in the car is lit, then you know if the filter needs to be checked.

A good rule of thumb for you as the owner of a diesel car is that, if you often drive long trips eg. on the highway every day, you will probably never have problems with the diesel particulate filter. While if you almost only take short trips in the city, then it may be better to get a petrol car.

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Prices on exhaust repair or replacement of exhaust sections

The average prices and savings for the car brands shown are based on different models and years. You must therefore create a job and compare quotes to see your actual price and savings.
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£104 / 24%
£129 / 18%
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£139 / 18%
£161 / 22%
£134 / 22%
£52 / 20%
£158 / 19%
£154 / 21%

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