If you are having DPF Problems, to the point where your Diesel particulate filter (DPF) has become blocked beyond cleaning simply by carrying out a standard DPF regeneration then you are probably looking for information on the cost of replacing your Diesel particulate filter. Unfortunately the particulate filter (DPF) replacement costs at most dealers are astronomical, for example a BMW DPF Replacement diesel particulate filter could cost in the region of £2000, whilst an Audi Replacement DPF particulate filter has been quoted at £1800 and even a Volvo replacement diesel particulate filter (DPF) could cost upwards of £1500, in fact the cheapest quoted price for the supply and fitting of a DPF at a dealer was £1050!.
So replacing a Diesel particulate filter (DPF System) is an expensive business, so it is not surprising that many car owners resort to the cheaper option of having their DPF diesel particulate filter removed when it becomes problematic, which then leaves them open to all kinds of legalities, such as prosecution under the vehicle construction and use regulations, and driving uninsured, since removing the DPF is illegal in the UK (and indeed most European countries) and is considered an illegal vehicle modification which may result in your car insurer refusing to pay out in the event of an accident, or even revoking cover altogether, assuming of course that your car passes its MOT.
So it makes sense to replace the particulate filter (DPF) and remain on the right side of the law, but why are DPF replacements so expensive, and why do the dealers charge so much when it comes to replacing a Diesel particulate filter?. In short, there is no logical reason for replacement DPF systems to cost £1000 or more, and this is why…..
Diesel particulate systems (DPF) have been around since 2004 in most larger vehicles and 4×4’s and have been fitted to all diesel vehicles, small and large all over the world since Euro V was introduced in 2010, so this is a mass produced component now produced in large volumes for the car manufacturers which would mean a substantial drop in component prices due to bulk production ordering, I guess the only reason why DPF replacements cost so much is because the car manufacturers have spotted an opportunity to charge the customer for what is basically a consumable whose existance is dicated by and protected by law!. So basically, you need a DPF for your car, and so they’ll charge you as much as possible for a replacement when (rather than “if” it fails) – a win-win situation for them.
Happily there are a wealth of aftermarket DPF replacements available, costing a fraction of what a car dealer will charge you, and they cover most popular makes and models. Many drivers are worried that the low price of an aftermarket diesel particulate filter (DPF system) may reflect poor quality compared to a more expensive OEM supplied DPF purchased from a dealer, and result in the old adage “buy cheap – buy twice”, however in reality the aftermarket Diesel particulate filter (DPF) systems are sold at the true reflection of what they cost and it is the dealers who are charging well over the odds for the same technology, most aftermarket DPF’s are just as well made as the originals and will last just as long (or longer in my own experience), they also come with exactly the same warranty period as a dealer supplied DPF too, so you have nothing to lose, and a small fortune to save, in fact replacing your faulty or blocked DPF with an Aftermarket becomes more affordable and will cost around the same as one of those illegal DPF removal services.
However, whether you fit a replacement Diesel particulate filter (DPF) supplied by a dealer, or an aftermarket particulate filter it is important to ensure that the existing DPF hasn’t become blocked through a problem elsewhere on the car, which, if not rectified, will result in the new Diesel particulate filter (DPF) also becoming blocked after a short period of time, and so the circle, and expense continues. In the majority of cases a DPF will become blocked and eventually damaged by being driven on regular short journeys where the car is in traffic or never gets to its normal running temperature, so if this sounds like the reason that your particulate filter has become blocked then you will need to adapt your driving style and change your use of the vehicle accordingly.
However, if you make regular longer journeys involving motorway or dual carriageway journeys for more than 20 minutes at a time, then the reason that your original Diesel partcilate filter became prematurely blocked may be down to the following reasons, and this check list is one that you should carry out, before purchasing and fitting a new Particulate Filter.
- Engine Temperature – Check coolant and EGR thermostats (where fitted) to ensure the vehicle reaches its normal operating temperature fairly quickly
- Check Glowplugs – These should be fitted and working in all cylinders, you may need to have the vehicle checked by a diagnostic reader to establish this.
- Check and Clean EGR Valve – blocked and sticking EGR valves are by far the biggest cause of a DPF system failing to regenerate leading to it becoming blocked.
- Incorrect Oil type – Diesel vehicles require the use of Low Ash (Low SAPS) oil to reduce the amount of soot which the engine produces, using standard non DPF engine oil can lead to problems due to the increased mass of soot entering the diesel particulate filter
- Connect a handheld code reader to read any diagnostic fault codes from the vehicle to ensure that non of the multiple sensors fitted to the DPF have failed as these can wrongly cause the DPF to be identified as faulty.
Once you have established that there are no underlying reasons in relation to why your DPF failed, or have carried out any remedial work highlighted in the list above, then you are ready to purchase your new aftermarket DPF system, and I have provided links below to tried and trusted vendors who offer DPF’s of equal quality to the OEM systems, but at a fraction of the dealer prices. These after market diesel particulate filters (DPF) can be fitted by independants, local high street garages or even ‘fast fit’ centres, you can even DIY if you have access to a ramp.
Additional DPF Filters are also available at Car Parts 4 Less
Now that you have fitted your new Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) care should be taken to ensure that it regenerates correctly and is well maintained. I recommend adding Wynns DPF Cleaning additive to every tank of diesel which helps to speed up the regeneration process by lowering the temperature at which DPF regenerations take place. You should ensure that the correct low ash (Low SAPS) Oil is used in the correct grade for your vehicle and I highly recommend that oil and filter changes are carried out on a regular basis – no more than 10k miles between changes, regardless of whether the manufacturers states a figure above this.
A well maintained replacement diesel particulate filter, fitted to a car which is driven in the style recommended in the owners’ manual and using the correct low SAPS oil should last for 80k – 120k miles so a few £’s spent on oil and additives should negate the need for another DPF replacement.