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DPFs hit the headlines
Last week a feature on the BBC’s Watchdog programme highlighted some of the problems that some motorists have reported with their new cars, fitted with Diesel Particulate Filters. In particular, the feature looked at the failure or near failure of DPFs on vehicles that mainly do local, urban driving.
For Diesel Particulate Filters to function effectively and to deliver the environmental benefits for which they are intended, these vehicles should be regularly run at higher speeds and for longer periods of time than most urban driving allows for. Failure to do so can cause the DPF to become blocked resulting in a big bill for repair or, more likely, replacement.
Another significant, potential risk to the effective operation of DPFs is using the wrong engine oil. Both Diesel Particulate Filters and certain Catalytic Converters require what are known as ‘Low SAPS’ oils which are Low in Sulphated Ash and other harmful components which can cause premature failure of exhaust after treatment units.
Comma spokesperson Mike Bewsey explains: “All internal combustion engines burn some level of oil – it’s part of the design. As they burn, the resulting gases are released through the vehicle’s exhaust system. It is absolutely essential, whether a complete oil change or just a top-up is being carried out, that vehicles fitted with these exhaust after-treatment units, are fitted with the right grade of Low SAPS oil – these oils are especially designed to be lower in Sulphated Ash and other components that can be harmful to CATS and DPFs.”
While the technology isn’t brand new, it is certainly expected that problems with DPFs will become more commonplace, Bewsey explains: “The car parc is changing – there are more diesel cars on the roads and there is an increasing trend for environmentally friendly vehicles. As more of these vehicles fitted with DPFs start to come up for their first oil change or as they start to need top-ups, we expect to see more complaints of oil-related exhaust after treatment failure.”
Knowing which oil to use can be complicated: Comma’s own range of Performance Oils now includes 15 different grades. Comma’s recommendation service is completely guaranteed to recommend the right type of oil for a given vehicle – even those vehicles that require a Low SAPS oil. So with regards to DPFs, if you use the engine oil that Comma recommends and you subsequently have an issue caused because of that product, then you’re covered.
Find out more about DPFs here:
View the Watchdog feature here (this link will take you to a BBC website): http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/watchdog/2011/10/diesel_particulate_filters.html
Find out about Comma’s new look Performance Motor Oil range and Guarantee here: http://www.commaoil.com/pmo
To find the right products your vehicle click here: http://www.commaoil.com/products
(Image supplied courtesy of Bosal. This image should not be used without Bosal's permission.)
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