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DPF problems: outline of options and advice needed


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Hi all,

I've been having DPF problems with my 1.6 TDCI focus (2010, 76K miles), and need a bit of advice on decisions going forward. I haven't found one post that really explores different DPF options together clearly, so hopefully this will prove useful for others.

Symptoms and diagnosis:

- Car's acceleration had become poor and there was less power overall, which was more noticeable on uphill climbs. This was shortly after getting it serviced (changed oil, air and fuel filters) so I was intending to take it back to the garage to make sure all the pipes were connected back properly etc.

- Before I had a chance to get to the garage the engine management light came on and car went into Limp mode (car restricted to 3,000prm max). There were a few occasions in the week before when I turned the car off and the engine fan remained on for a few minutes, which I believe is due to a DPF regeneration being interrupted before it could finish.

- The garage diagnostic tool found two fault codes (P242F: DPF restriction-Ash accumulation and P2463: DPF soot accumulation). After clearing the codes, P242F was removed and the car gets out of Limp mode, but P2463 remains and engine management light stays on.

The things I have tried so far:

1. Bought a modified ODB cable to connect my laptop to car and downloaded Forscan to get some live data on car sensors to confirm the problem and check potential causes. DPF sensor seems too high. When I rev it to around 3K rpm it jumps to around 15-20kPa. I believe 5kPa should be the max for a well functioning DPF, so this seems to confirm the DPF issue (as well as poor acceleration). I would recommend all owners of a Ford car to install Forscan on their computers or download the app as it really gives you some tools for diagnosing/fixing problems yourself.

2. Added Wynn's DPF cleaner to fuel tank and took car for a run at high revs down the motorway. I recorded live DPF pressure sensor and it reached 40kPa at one point. I found out after further reading that with the engine light on for code P2463 the car will no longer automatically start a DPF regeneration, so I don't think this method can be a cure in my case, but rather good practise now and again to ensure you don't run into DPF problems down the line.

3. Tried to do a manual regeneration using Forscan, but it stopped after initialising due to high soot content in DPF. I believe this is a safety precaution as manual regeneration can raise the temperature in the DPF to 600 degrees.

Options to resolve problem:

The car runs fine apart from poor acceleration, but I've been trying to use it as little as possible to avoid damage, and I could really do with some advise now on getting this resolved. I believe I have the following options, but I have no clue which would be the best one to take (if I have missed anything can you please add the option to this discussion):

1. Replace DPF- I've read that the DPF will need replacing after 75K miles (which means I am due for a replacement), to I could buy a new DPF part and have the garage fit it. This would hopefully solve the problem, but I am aware that there may have been other faults which have led to the DPF becoming blocked. The top two main culprits may be a stuck EGR valve or the Turbo leaking oil. Both would lead to the DPF becoming blocked again, so I would therefore need to get the EGR valve inspected and cleaned as well as the turbo inspected. I think this option will cost me around £500 in total with an aftermarket DPF (roughly half the total for parts and labour each).


- Would an aftermarket DPF be recommended for price savings e.g. Eurocar parts have a brand called 'React'.

- Is there anything to be aware of that may lead to this option not correcting the problem?

2. Have the DPF cleaned- This should be cheaper than a complete replacement, and would involve the DPF being removed and professionally cleaned. Alternatively I believe you could remove the DPF yourself and use a high pressure water hose to clean it yourself (I don't feel this is an option for me as I haven't got any real DIY mechanic experience). I think it would be wise to the checks outline in option 1 to rule out any future DPF blockages. Cost may be roughly £400 (?), but I haven't done much research into this options.


- How likely is this to work?

- Are there any reputable companies to do this in London?

3. Remove the DPF - you could remove the filter from inside the DPF casing and have it reinstalled. This would require the cars electronic system to be remapped to make the car ignore all things related to the DPF. I think in theory this is in breach of the MOT rules, and may lead to the car failing the MOT, but from what I've read it is highly unlikely to fail in practise. This options seems to cost between £400-£600.


- Could this lead to the car having any other mechanical problems?

- Has anyone with experience of having this done had MOT problems?

I really appreciate any help and advice given on how I can resolve this, or if there are any last things I could do myself to save a trip to the garage. It would be nice to get the car back to how it felt before and that feeling of having a reliable vehicle. If you want any more information just ask and I hope this thread provides a good outline of the options for other to make a decision if they face DPF problems.

Many thanks,



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I had mine cleaned in January. Almost identical model and mileage. The clean itself cost £50+VAT. On top of that there was new EOLYS and an oil and filter change. Total cost inc. VAT £200. This was in Yorkshire, not London mind. Has worked so far, it's only been six months, but it didn't occur to me it wouldn't. MOT emissions were fine still.

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The recommendation is to have the EOLYS topped up every 3 years rather than the whole DPF replaced IIRC. Mine went because the previous owner hadn't had it done and it had run out.

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the DPF will fill up with soot or even in an ideal situation with perfect driving / regens, with ash, replacing it or removing it is the only long term solution, cleaning it may or may not make much of a difference, mainly because the design and shape of the can couldn't make cleaning it any more complicated, it will probably just delay the inevitable.

@TomsFocus replaced his with an aftermarket job I believe and had a terrible time with it, but id expect to pay a lot more for a genuine one, ive seen prices for DPF replacement as high as 1000 or so

the thing with the DPF is that if it is restricting flow, it will increase back pressure on the turbo which will have a negative effect on the turbos life, that's not so good.

Removing the core of the DPF will fix all your problems and some future ones too, if you have an undertray they wont even see that its been cut open let alone tampered with, there isn't any real disadvantage to getting it out, other than the fact its against the law, but what they cant see wont hurt you.

Blank off the EGR valve, its just a waste of space and will happily wreck your engine every day its in use.

one last thing, oil changes, don't forget to do them at 6k interval!


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Yeah I bought an aftermarket DPF...it's horrific tbh.

Doesn't fit properly, wasn't welded properly so leaked soot and probably affected pressure readings, the cat in it is much more restrictive than the OE one, the crush bend is more restrictive than the OE one...oh and the DPF core only lasted 3 months before becoming blocked again. 

It did 'only' cost £200, and I fitted it myself so no labour costs...but £200 every 3 months would get a bit expensive lol.

I would recommend you either replace with a genuine one (around £900) if keeping the car a while and everything else is ok (EGR etc), or have it removed, blank the EGR and have both mapped out.  I wouldn't suggest anyone fits a cheap aftermarket one as it's the biggest waste of money I've had on this car...

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i agree on aftermarket ones, nightmare!!! ive attempted to fit aftermarket ònes from different suppliers and none fitted correctly , ford genuine do fit correctly and used to be very expensive, but recently they have dropped in cost.

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have you had it diagnosed properley yet or just a case of relying on codes? what is the pressure sensor reading ign on engine off?

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Thanks to everyone for the advice so far. I believe my DPF has some sort of coating which means it doesn't need the EOLYS fluid.

I brought it to the garage, who used the snap-on diagnostic machine to find the codes the first time (before I got Forscan). They got me to rev the engine and had a look under the bonnet. He mentioned it could be a DPF problem before we hooked it up and got the DPF fault codes, so it sounded like he knew what he was on about. He also recommended finding someone reputable who can remove the DPF as he wasn't the biggest fan.

I've checked the DPF sensor reading with ignition on engine off, and it seems to jump between 0.7 and 0.8 kPa with the engine off, and around 5-6kPa with the engine on but the car stationary. I assume a functioning sensor should give a reading of 0kPa with engine off, I'm not sure if 0.7-0.8 is more or less 0 in this case...


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1 hour ago, Mo_focus said:

it seems to jump between 0.7 and 0.8 kPa with the engine off, and around 5-6kPa with the engine on

Before replacing or cleaning the DPF, it is worth checking the DP sensor a bit more. The engine off reading sounds suspicious, and if the 5-6kP was at idle speed, that is way too high.

First locate & check the hoses from DPF to sensor, for spilts, blockage, loose connection.

Then disconnect the hoses from the sensor, and see what it reads with just atmospheric pressure on both sides.

With a little ingenuity, it is surprisingly easy to test a DP sensor.You need a 3m long (or more) clear tube, half full of water, bent into a U. Connect one end to the HP side of the sensor (that had the hose from the engine side of the DPF). Then deform the U to raise the water level on the open end of the U. A 1 meter difference in water levels is about 10kPa. (1019 mm is 10kPa).

Try not to pour water into the sensor, though!  It should be fairly robust as it is designed to cope with exhaust gas, containing steam which can condense to water, but best not to put it to the test if possible.

Regarding DPF lifetime, Coated DPFs are supposed to last a lot longer than the 70k mile for the EOLYS type. If so, it should not be blocked yet, unless something else has gone wrong. I have seen figures of 150k to 200k miles bandied about for CDPF, or is this just hype?

If the sensor proves ok, and all other options fail, so the DPF is to be condemned, it would be interesting to try water washing. But as you say you "haven't got any real DIY mechanic experience" I expect this is not practical for you.

For anyone who wants to experiment with a no-good DPF, I would say: Do Not use a pressure spray. This will just ram ash deeper into the media. Reverse flush it with water poured in, or under low pressure, for an extended period, until the water runs clean. There have been conflicting reports about this. Some say it makes the ash set like concrete (not important if the DPF is duff anyway), some say it works, providing the ash is washed out before it can set.



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  • 3 years later...

Hi All, 

Reactivating this thread as i have a question. I've had my DPF cleaned so it's almost as good as new. My Focus however is still not registering this as the dpf pressure sensor is also knackered. Its sitting on 112k at the moment so all the signs would say it's time to do it. The sensor is reading as max pressure even when idling so even minimal acceleration is putting the engine into limp mode and or cutting the car out. The mechanic who undertook the work confirmed this issue via fault code readings. Ford have quoted me over £300 to replace the pressure sensor but as far as I can see through self research, it's almost a bolt on and bolt off job. I've found an aftermarket sensor online for around £25 and want to give the job a go myself but am fairly inexperienced. Can anybody advise on what the job would entail and if this could be done myself? 




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1 hour ago, Matt wood said:

I've found an aftermarket sensor online for around £25 and want to give the job a go myself but am fairly inexperienced.

There should be no problem in doing this. There is always a risk that an aftermarket sensor is the wrong type, or is faulty, but it is extremely unlikely that any harm will be done if this is the case, just £25 wasted. Even if you have to try 3 different ones to get a good'un, it is vastly cheaper than a dealer's inflated price.

You, or the mechanic, will probably have to reset the DPF system after a cleaning, Forscan can do this. Though if he or you are reading the sensor pressure, it is likely that this will have been done already.

I assume the hoses to the sensor have been thoroughly checked. They are a very common fault.

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