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Don’t Get Clogged Up – Diesel Particulate Filter

Diesel Flat Bed Tow Truck

DPF Filter

ECM on Black

In real world work applications, repeated short drive times at less than highway speeds are very common. Also, trucks are increasingly used as machines requiring long idle and extended use in PTO (Power Take Off) Mode. Both scenarios prevent a truck from properly going into its regen cycle which is supposed to clean the DPF filter.

This is where the trouble begins. A clogged DPF filter can result in diesel soot backing up into the engine, causing damage to the VGT actuator, turbo, fuel injectors and EGR solenoid. Also, the unburned fuel injected into the exhaust system, as part of the regen cycle, can go into the crankcase contaminating the engine oil.

The most common Cummins DPF related symptoms are clogged and cracked DPF filters; high cleaning / replacement costs; lost income due to truck down time; excessive regeneration cycles; and reduced power / limp mode in PTO. These DPF problems are so common that Dodge/Cummins owners have filed a class action lawsuit which has yet to be settled.

Jim Comack at ECM Performance says, “We can get any off road or export DPF equipped vehicle back to full reliability with our unique programming service and customer removal of the DPF filter. Most customers ship their ECM to us, but we can also send a technician anywhere in the world for onsite service.”

Customers unbolt the ECM from the engine block, unplug the harness connections and ship it to ECM Performance. The original engine data is read from the ECM and backed up three ways for the customer’s protection. A technician then modifies the calibration to shut off the after treatment system / DPF cleaning cycle. Within 48 hours, the new calibration is flashed to the ECM resulting in 100% Code Free operation. After the customer receives their ECM via next day air, they bolt the ECM back to the engine block, replug the harness connections. They must then remove the DPF.

Cummins Dyno Room

Alex M., a vehicle exporter under military contact said, “We exported 30 DPF equipped rollback trucks with Cummins 6.7 ISB engines. For 6 months, they were all sitting dead in some foreign yard due to clogged DPF filters. The DPF’s clogged almost instantly due to the use of high sulfur content diesel fuel. This caused the trucks to shut down or go into a limp mode. Though it was the end user’s fault for misreporting the fuel standard for that country, let me tell you, no one was happy about this situation. It held us up delivering additional vehicles to the same customer. We contacted Ecm Performance after receiving a recommendation from a local diesel mechanic that had a similar problem on a farm truck. After ECM Performance reprogrammed the ECM, the end user reinstalled it and removed the DPF. They were so happy that we had ECM flash all the trucks. Now the trucks are in the field, running great on the local fuel. Mileage and power were also increased.”

ECM’s Jim Comack said, “Alex’s problems with Cummins/Paccar DPF equipped trucks are very typical overseas, and very common here in the states for other reasons. Unlike Alex who is a bulk exporter, most owner’s are just trying to make a living with trucks that not reliable. The sole reason of the unreliability is the DPF Filter and a regeneration cycle that just doesn’t work in the real world. It doesn’t matter how many times you tow the truck back to factory service facilities. The only way to restore full reliability is to shut off the Regen Cycle through reprogramming the ECM. They can then remove the DPF. Like magic all their DPF related problems disappear & they can go back to making money.”

Cummins, Paccar, Ford, Peterbilt, Kenworth & Sterling Trucks do not endorse, have any affiliation or connection with ECM Performance or its services. All Product names & trademarks featured here are the property of their respective trademark holders. For export & off-road use only.