If you drive a diesel car, please be aware that you must take care of your Diesel Particulate Filters (DPFs). Your particulate filter must regenerate itself every 300 miles or so, which is generally done by driving for 10 to 20 minutes at 40mph or faster as this heats up the exhaust and burns off the soot in the filter.
Failing that, some cars have an ‘active regeneration’ process that adds fuel to the exhaust to raise the temperature and allow the filter to be cleaned at lower speeds. However, the revs must still stay above 2,000 for around 10 minutes. If neither of these options is open to you is to use your vehicle as little as possible.
If your DPF is becoming blocked a warning light will come up on your dashboard. Do not ignore this, your vehicle could shut down and this can result in major engine damage. The DPF will need to be removed and cleaned or replaced and you’ll have to pay for this work.
It will usually look like one of these symbols:
If this light comes on, taking corrective action to clear the DPF is fairly simple as all you usually need to do is take the vehicle for a drive of 10-20 minutes at speeds in excess of 40mph in a location that it's safe to do so, such as a dual carriageway. This will usually be enough and the light will turn off as the DPF has regenerated itself.
If you ignore the warning light, your vehicle will either go into ‘limp’ mode or stop altogether. This means you won't be able to drive, and the DPF will need to be removed and cleaned or replaced and you may be liable for the cost of this work.
DPF’s do a great job in reducing emissions and usually will be problem-free providing you take your vehicle for a long drive every now and again, and you don’t ignore the warning lights.
If you're unsure about DPF’s, please contact your LeasePlan Customer Service advisor who can help you.