Critical Aftertreatment Components Explained
Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF)
The DPF in heavy-duty trucks is tasked with capturing and storing soot and other diesel particulate matter before it reaches our atmosphere. Your DPF is mounted in line with your exhaust tubing, which means all of your exhaust must go through it before exiting the system. Since your DPF’s storage capacity is finite, it will need to be cleaned every 150 to 200 thousand miles. Some newer DPFs have automatic cleaning systems, but older versions need to be cleaned manually by a mechanic.
Your SCR Catalyst is responsible for breaking down nitrogen oxides into their basic components, therefore rendering them harmless. This particular component does need to be cleaned on a regular basis; however, depending on the age and usage of the component, it may become clogged. If this happens, you’ll likely see a warning light on your dashboard.
Your DOC catalyst is responsible for breaking down carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons into their basic components, therefore rendering them harmless. Like your SCR Catalyst, your DOC can become clogged as well. When this happens, you’ll likely see an exhaust system light pop up on your dashboard.
Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) System
Your EGR system is responsible for taking some of your exhaust gases and recirculating them back through your engine’s combustion chamber. Before the gas enters the chamber, it is cooled. This influx of cooled exhaust that enters your engine lowers your combustion chamber, which in turn lowers the number of nitrogen oxides that are produced. Common problems with this system include EGR valve issues in which the valve sticks open, and the exhaust gas flow is not properly regulated.
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