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Can you clean a DPF filter?

The simple answer to this question is that you can clean a DPF filter, but ideally you shouldn’t have to because the car’s DPF filter should be self-cleaning or ‘self-regenerating’ as it burns off soot collected in the filter and turns the soot into ash which is expelled.

There are circumstances, however, where the Diesel particulate filter can get blocked, and it is at this point that your DPF may require a ‘forced’ regeneration, because it is beyond the point where the DPF can ‘self-clean’.

A typical circumstance is where a vehicle is used primarily, or even exclusively, on short urban runs where it rarely, if ever, gets the chance to reach the required temperature (around 600°C) to be able to burn off the soot. The soot could potentially accumulate in the DPF and block it. The vehicle’s warning light is likely to illuminate before any problems occur with the running of the vehicle, but if the vehicle’s warning lights are not heeded, the car could end up going into ‘limp’ mode, which, as the name implies, is where the car’s performance is severely impaired.

At Darwen Diesels, we use a ‘reverse flush’ cleaning process which uses a harmless water based cleaning solution to ‘blast’ the soot out of the DPF, and cleaning it to achieve 98% of the efficiency of a brand new DPF.  The cost is from £165 + vat for the cleaning process, and we have a 24 hour turnaround time too, so there are no long delays while the car is off the road.