Quick Intro to DPF Filters
Every commercial truck since 2007 has a Diesel Particulate Filter, or DPF, on the vehicle. In simplest terms, the DPF is an extra device in the exhaust system that is designed to catch diesel particulate matter, or “soot”, from the engine. The issue that many people don’t realize is that these filters have required maintenance intervals. These are based on usage type, miles driven, and hours of engine run time. This required maintenance involves removing the DPF, running it through a DPF cleaning machine, and then placing it back on the truck. Often times it is best practice to also run a forced DPF regen through the truck as well. By following the manufacturers recommended intervals, you will experience less downtime and less money spent on repairs.
With all of that said, this now represents both a problem (for truck owners) and an opportunity (for repair facilities). Historically, many people in this field believe that you need to spend over $100,000 to purchase a machine to do this. While these machines are absolutely fabulous, the major of customers don’t have a need to clean 40+ DPFs per week, they only need to clean a fraction of that. This is where the portable DPF Cleaning Machine steps in.
Recommended DPF Cleaning Schedule
Every single owners manual for every single commercial truck engine has a list of recommended service intervals. Most customers will make sure to get their oil changed regularly, but the diesel particulate filter is often neglected. This is mainly due to customers not understanding this needs to be done, along with the fact that dealerships are usually very poor at making the recommendation. As an example, we’ve taken several of the more popular 13 and 15 liter engines, and looked them up in the service manuals or on the vendors website. Here is what is recommended.
For EPA 2013 and newer ISX15 engines, Cummins recommends to remove the diesel particulate filter to be cleaned on whichever of these come first:
- 200,000 miles or
- 6,750 hours or
- 24 months
With Cummins, this recommended schedule is to be used regardless if the vehicle is severe, normal, or light duty applications.
You can download the ISX15 EPA2013 Maintenance Schedule here: Cummins-ISX15-EPA2013.pdf (188 downloads)
For EPA 2010 and newer Volvo engines used in heavy commercial trucks, the requirement to have the diesel particulate filter removed and cleaned changes by application:
- For Severe Service applications, every 250,000 miles or 4,500 hours
- For Regional & Long Haul applications, every 400,000 or 10,000 hours
You can download the Volvo EPA10 Maintenance Schedule here: Volvo D11 D13 D16 Maintenance Intervals (150 downloads)
PACCAR introduced the MX series engines in 2010, and also has a recommended interval to have the DPF removed, placed in a DPF cleaning machine, and then placed back on the truck:
- Every 200,000 miles
You can download the PACCAR MX13 Maintenance Schedule here: PACCAR MX13 Maintenance Schedule (133 downloads)
Even though they are not wildly popular engines, the MaxxForce 11 and 13 are very particular about having the DPF removed and cleaned. MaxxForce engines DPF maintenance intervals are broken down based on the vehicles average miles per gallon.
- 6.5 mpg or higher = 400,000 miles
- 5.0-6.5 mpg = 325,000 miles
- Less then 5.0 mpg = 250,000 miles
You can download the International MaxxForce 11 & 13 Maintenance Schedule here: International MF11 & MF13 Maintenance Manual (143 downloads)
In short, every commercial truck driving down the road since 2007 has diesel particulate filter that needs to be cleaned anywhere from every 200,000 to 400,000 miles. There have been over 1.7 millions Class 8 commercial trucks produced since 2007, and that is not including medium duty trucks in the equation. That is a lot of DPF cleaning that needs to be done each year!
For Repair Facilities – An Opportunity to Increase Revenue
For those of you reading this that run repair facilities as your business, this is an opportunity to do several things:
- Create a new, profitable revenue stream for your business
- Reduce customer down-time
- Increase customer satisfaction
First, lets do the math on how one of the machines can help you generate more revenue and make some assumptions:
- Initial purchase price of $8,500. Financed for 36-months at $275 per month.
- You plan to do only 1 DPF cleaning per week.
- Your shop labor rate is $100 per hour.
- Your technician makes $25 per hour.
- On average, you can charge 1.5 hours to remove & replace a diesel particulate filter.
Based on these assumptions, lets see what your monthly revenue and profit changes by just doing 1 filter per week:
- You collect $150 in labor costs for the remove & replace
- You collect $300 for the use of the DPF cleaning machine
- Average invoice to customer is $450
- Your labor costs involves is around 2 hours. The 1.5 hours to remove & replace the filter, plus 30 minutes of your technician setting the machine up, checking on it periodically, and then cleaning it up. This amounts to $50 of labor costs.
- Your net profit for this is now $300 for one job
Using those numbers, if you did one per week, that would be $1200 in profit generated for your shop. Deduct the $275 per month payment, and you are netting yourself $925 extra per month, by only doing 1 DPF filter cleaning a week.
Having your own onsite, DPF cleaning machine not only can generate you more revenue, but it also reduces customer downtime. If you are currently sending your diesel particulate filters off to be cleaned, how much time and money does that cost you? How long does it take you to get one back?
A DPF cleaning machine not only increases your revenue, but also improves customer downtime, reduces their repair expenses, and allows you to build a better relationship with your customers.
For Fleets – Reduce downtime and expenses
If you run a fleet of trucks and have your own maintenance facility, you do this because you want to keep repair costs down and keep vehicle up-time as high as possible. If you can do those two things, you generate more profit for your company. A DPF is like any other filter on your vehicle — It needs to be cleaned regularly. Failure to do so can lead to costly repairs. Lets do the quick math using some conservative estimates:
- Tow bill to bring the truck to a facility with a DPF Cleaning Machine = $500
- Repair bill from the facility = $450
- Lost revenue from a day of vehicle downtime = $500
- Total lost revenue for 1 day of repairs = $1,450
Some fleets do perform these required maintenance’s when they should, but they send it out to have the work performed. With the advantage of purchasing a machine for a monthly payment instead of up-front fee, fleets can also save money this way. With a monthly bill of only $300 to own your own DPF cleaning machine, you are saving yourself money if you are cleaning more then 1 filter per month.
Portable DPF Cleaning Machine
If you’ve read this far, it means you are interested in learning more about a smaller, portable DPF Cleaning Machine. This machine can easily handle multiple DPF cleanings per day, and will get your filter 99.9% clean. This video will give you a good overview.
Some of the major highlights of this tool includes:
- Small footprint, so it doesn’t take up much shop space.
- Runs on minimal electricity (115VAC or 24VDC with 6 AMP draw) and compressed air.
- Pushes air through each “substrate” equally ensuring a thorough cleaning.
- Takes less then 15 minutes to setup & tear down after use.
- Cleans filters in 20-45 minutes depending on diameter size.
- Quick, easy, and safe ash clean up.
- Fully automated, so technician can work on other jobs while filter is being cleaned.
Summary & Financing Information
So there you have it, a tool that can both increase revenue, save you money, and reduce vehicle downtime all in one. If you would like more information on this tool, you can do that a couple ways:
- View the product on our store website.
- Call us at 888-983-1975 option 1.
- Click the “Live Chat” icon on the lower right side of your screen.
- Contact us via the web for more information.
If you are interested in our financing options, you can view more on our Financing page.