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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Like most DPF-equipped diesel vehicles, the 2.2 i-DTEC has been known to develop DPF problems. A full replacement (particularly when undertaken at a dealer) can easily set you back around £1k.

In the UK, at least, there are many companies offering to remove the DPF and undertake the corresponding necessary modification to the vehicle ECU. Obviously the standards to which these companies operate is variable and horror stories have been seen here on this forum regarding, for instance, the cruise control no longer working on some Honda models following such work. However, well known and apparently reliable companies such as Celtic and Premier Tuning also offer this service.

Putting aside the ethical and moral issues of disabling vehicle emission control systems, there is also a significant legal issue. Specifically “it is an offence under the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations to use a vehicle that has been modified in such a way that it no longer complies with the air pollutant emissions standards it was designed to meet.” Not only do users of modified vehicles face significant fines but, by virtue of being classed as unroadworthy, their insurance will not be in effect. Since February 2014, garages and testing stations have been required check for a DPF in the inspection of the exhaust system as part of the MOT test and the vehicle will automatically fail the test if the filter had been fitted as standard but is no longer present. However so long as the DPF appears to still be present then owners of modified vehicles can 'get away with it', effectively a weak legal loophole that the DPF removal companies have been hiding behind, even though they are fully aware that the vehicle has been rendered illegal to use on UK roads. To date, around 2,000 drivers have been prosecuted for offences relating to use of a vehicle that has had the DPF removed but actually this is probably only a drop in the ocean.

However the situation for drivers of such illegal vehicles is about become very serious, as it is planned that from May 2018 the MoT will have to use new techniques to better detect the presence of a working DPF and hence many modified vehicles will require significant and expense attention to restore their roadworthiness.

In summary:-

DO NOT HAVE A FAILED DPF REMOVED, this illegal modification will result in an MoT failure and it'll cost far more in the long term.

Additionally be very cautious when buying a secondhand diesel vehicle that could have already had its DPF removed. I would assume that many illegal vehicles are about to be off-loaded by worried owners.

More information here:-
MOT changes to be introduced in May following DPF investigation - Garagewire
MOT DPF changes now expected in May 2018 - Garagewire

Please feel free to share on other car forums.
 

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DPF removal and decats - just no.

Not worth invalidating your insurance or getting in bother. Plus it ******* stinks.
 
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I don't think anyone has been prosecuted yet. The DVSA say 1,800 cars have been caught without a DPF since 2014, but that only means they failed the MOT test. Either way, 2,000-ish represents only a small percentage of the many tens of thousands of cars that are out there with their DPF removed.

Presently, unless the physical removal was done very badly, it is almost impossible to know by examination of the exhaust system.

BBC did a thorough investigation from all angles which you can download and listen to as a podcast. Just click on the Download button under "Diesel Particulate Filters" in this link BBC Radio 5 live - 5 live Investigates - Downloads
It's a 50 minute mp3 but only the first 40 minutes are about DPF removal.

DVSA are still working on what the new rules will be as of May 2018. At the very least, I would think that it would be a mandatory 'advisory' if it looks like the DPF canister has been opened and then welded shut again (this is how the filter is removed by some cleaning companies, or, by the companies who do not put it back). Once the filter has been removed by a removal company, there is no pressure differential, so some parameters in the engine map also have to be altered. This can also be checked, but I doubt if they would introduce it into the MOT test. The most likely scenario that I can think of, is that if "DPF canister has been tampered with" is placed as an advisory, either all, or a random sample, of cars with the advisory, would have to go to a dealer to have the engine map checked.

The alternative would be some device that checks the exhaust, either by using an analyser of the pressure waves coming out (and comparing with a data set for the car being tested), or by using a probe that is sensitive to the particulate matter being emitted at fast idle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The clouds of smoke under heavy throttle might be a clue :wink3:
Not much load on the engine during the current MoT smoke test though. MoT test stations will have to invest in new technology to 'prove' that an DPF is present and working. I fear that the cost of an MoT may have to rise to reflect this investment?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I was hoping to hear from Civinfo members who have actually had their DPF removed, but I don't expect they'll now want to admit it!

Maybe they could post along the lines of 'a friend of mine has had his DPF removed and is now worried'?

I'm also wondering if legal action (individual or, ideally, class) could be taken against any company who carried out DPF removal without making the legal situation clear? I know that some do.
 

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I was hoping to hear from Civinfo members who have actually had their DPF removed, but I don't expect they'll now want to admit it!

Maybe they could post along the lines of 'a friend of mine has had his DPF removed and is now worried'?

I'm also wondering if legal action (individual or, ideally, class) could be taken against any company who carried out DPF removal without making the legal situation clear? I know that some do.



I guess people are just sitting waiting to see what ACTUALLY happens in 2018 instead of jumping to conclusions on what MIGHT happen?? If new technology is introduced that can detect a gutted and re-welded DPF then yes it will catch people out but, if not, it's probably just going to be another 'scare story' like those we've been hearing for years...
 
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I guess people are just sitting waiting to see what ACTUALLY happens in 2018 instead of jumping to conclusions on what MIGHT happen?? If new technology is introduced that can detect a gutted and re-welded DPF then yes it will catch people out but, if not, it's probably just going to be another 'scare story' like those we've been hearing for years...
The weight of evidence against PM10 and PM2.5 is so big that there will be outcry if this is only another 'scare story'. DVSA are serious about this, in fact in the podcast, a change of law would easily take place to make it a crime for any person to perform the permanent physical removal of the particulate filter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
I guess people are just sitting waiting to see what ACTUALLY happens in 2018 instead of jumping to conclusions on what MIGHT happen?? If new technology is introduced that can detect a gutted and re-welded DPF then yes it will catch people out but, if not, it's probably just going to be another 'scare story' like those we've been hearing for years...
Have you got a car that's had the DPF removed... Is your post wishful thinking LOL?

It was early 2014 when the DPF became part of the MoT test. Quite a lot has happened since then... The Euro 6 standard has entered legislation, the Audi scandal occurred and, more recently, the London T-charge has come into force. Do you really expect the government NOT to tighten up the MoT when all this has happened?

In a way I do agree with the sentiment of your post... anyone with a vehicle that has already had the DPF removed might as well hope that it is just a 'scare story' and wait until it becomes real; either that or sell the car just in case (which is something I was warning about). Either way, it would be pretty stupid for anyone to now have their DPF removed, in the knowledge that HM Government are currently planning to tighten up the MoT test in regard to confirming that the DPF is present and functional.
 

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One main driver of people getting DPFs removed is that they were mis-sold a diesel car. They bought it for the high MPG figures, but then drove it around a city and didn't give the DPF a good motorway run once a week. This resulted in high costs to get the DPF replaced - I think BMW quoted one guy for 2 grand in the 5Live investigation.

If you're going to buy something as expensive as a car - do the research, it's not difficult. We live in an Internet age where there so much information at your fingertips. Or you could just trust the salesman...
 

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One main driver of people getting DPFs removed is that they were mis-sold a diesel car. They bought it for the high MPG figures, but then drove it around a city and didn't give the DPF a good motorway run once a week. This resulted in high costs to get the DPF replaced - I think BMW quoted one guy for 2 grand in the 5Live investigation.

If you're going to buy something as expensive as a car - do the research, it's not difficult. We live in an Internet age where there so much information at your fingertips. Or you could just trust the salesman...
That's a bit unfair really - some people buy their cars as long term propositions over many years, intending to run the until they die. However, if their situation changes then they ca get caught out.

Typical example is my wife... we bought an Octavia Diesel 4x4 for her (then) regular commute over the Pennines to Alderley Edge from Sheffield. A year or so and a second child later and redundancy was on the scene. The car is now used for a different purpose and doesn't get the long runs it once did but I'm buggered if I'm going to throw money away and change it when it is relatively low mileage, in good condition and a great car to drive...

We weren't mis-sold in any way shape or form and did our research against our original requirements but things have changed.
 

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Have you got a car that's had the DPF removed... Is your post wishful thinking LOL?

It was early 2014 when the DPF became part of the MoT test. Quite a lot has happened since then... The Euro 6 standard has entered legislation, the Audi scandal occurred and, more recently, the London T-charge has come into force. Do you really expect the government NOT to tighten up the MoT when all this has happened?

In a way I do agree with the sentiment of your post... anyone with a vehicle that has already had the DPF removed might as well hope that it is just a 'scare story' and wait until it becomes real; either that or sell the car just in case (which is something I was warning about). Either way, it would be pretty stupid for anyone to now have their DPF removed, in the knowledge that HM Government are currently planning to tighten up the MoT test in regard to confirming that the DPF is present and functional.
Absolutely things have changed but we've had so many stories like this in the past that, personally, I'll wait until I see things 'in the flesh' so to speak... and I'll wait for the concrete detail rather than 'reports'. For example will this apply only to EU5 or also EU4 vehicles (very few of which had DPF's as standard) and will the testing stations be geared up enough to do the test anyway, know which model they are testing and what it should be fitted with?
 

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The weight of evidence against PM10 and PM2.5 is so big that there will be outcry if this is only another 'scare story'. DVSA are serious about this, in fact in the podcast, a change of law would easily take place to make it a crime for any person to perform the permanent physical removal of the particulate filter.
Interestingly a lot of the increase in PM10 and PM 2.5 is a direct result of increasing legislation and EU standards.

To meet the newer EU requirements manufacturers have had to increase fuel pressures, fit finer injectors and better control systems for those injectors. This has, in turn, led to finer 'mists' within the combustion chamber, thus increasing the production of the finer PM's that cause more of the problems and are more carcinogenic as they get further into the lungs. It's been a viscious circle.

Many older diesels (such as the old VW 1.9PD lumps) can chuck out more black smoke but it tends to be less harmful as it contains larger particles.

Add to that recent reports debunking the reported '40,000 deaths a year' and acknowledging the figures have been grossly exaggerated and I have a degree of scepticism.

And just in case you were wondering - my day job is Transport Planning and involves detailed Environmental Assessments...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
...will the testing stations be geared up enough to do the test anyway, know which model they are testing and what it should be fitted with?
They will have to become geared up enough to do the test! I'm old enough to remember the complaints when they were forced to obtain and use rolling road systems to properly test braking systems against improving standards. The cost of MoT tests then went up, something perhaps for us all to look forward to now?

One of the links in my opening post does include an example of a Transit van where the tester believed that the DPF had been removed, but it transpired that this model never originally had one fitted. But that's simply a matter of updating the VOSA on-line system used during the test.
 

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I don't think so. You have the ability to sell you car. Refusing to change because your circumstances change is just silly.
Suit yourself - you obviously have more disposable cash than me - and, whilst I could sell and change why should I when I have a perfectly good car and don't want to?? It's not being silly at all.
 

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Suit yourself - you obviously have more disposable cash than me - and, whilst I could sell and change why should I when I have a perfectly good car and don't want to?? It's not being silly at all.
I'll answer this properly now.

1. The point I was making wasn't about peoples circumstances changing. It's about people who walk into salesrooms and expect the salesman to be on their side. So they end up consuming all the sales patter and make the wrong decision. If you actually listen to the 5Live broadcast (link above) my point might make even more sense to you.

2. Research is your friend, not the salesman. The salesman is there to sell you things as he's on commission. If you research things, you won't get any scary surprises, plus, even if your circumstances change and you aren't completely stubborn to sell and there are no artificially contrived barriers in your way, you are not going to be disappointed as you already know depreciation levels expected on your car.

3. Luxury cars means luxury-prices maintenance costs. Partly why I chose a Honda. Again research would show that a DPF replacement on a Honda is much cheaper than a BMW, or any other single part for that matter.

4. It's not a question of having loads of money to switch cars every year. The point is that it's not a suitable car for you at the outset. Again, read my first post.

Sorry I couldn't be clearer on my original post but I didn't believe such verbosity was required. Hope everyone can get back to discussing the original topic which was about people legally removing DPFs but then illegally driving them and MOTs not even picking up the illegality.

:smile3:
 

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Sorry I couldn't be clearer on my original post

:smile3:
No worries (and apologies if I picked up a different slant originally).

I just get fed up of people implying I'm stupid... :smile3:
 

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Great post, informative and clear :thumbsup:

I hope many get to read this and don't bother with DPF removal. I'd appreciate fewer people flooding the air with all those lovely harmful particles.

I do feel for those buying a used diesel car that has had it removed/tampered with, only to be potentially walloped in the near future when it's caught that the DPF has been illegally tampered with by the previous owner.
 
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