Editor's Comment

Has the DPF MOT check changed anything?

Published:  23 July, 2014

This week I will start my comment with a plea. I would love to hear from any MOT testers who have failed a car or van for not having a DPF fitted, since the new testing regulations came in nearly six months ago.

A quick search on the internet still shows a number of companies offering DPF removal, many of which state the fact that it can clog easily and harm performance as an acceptable reason to consider it. The fact that it prevents harmful toxins from entering the atmosphere and is an MOT failure if removed isn't mentioned at all.

Going through various owner and enthusiast forums and there are stories of people failing after having the entire DPF removed and a straight-through pipe in its place, making it a bit obvious. Yet having talked to a few MOT testers in the last few months they have all mentioned the same problem - if the casing is still in place they cannot check whether the innards are intact, dismantling is not allowed during the test. So what happens then? Soot deposits around the tailpipe may be more noticeable but does this constitute part of the 'visual inspection of the DPF'?

The law also states that removal of the DPF is illegal but is this down to the company offering removal or the driver? Removal experts will often get round the issue by asking the driver to sign a declaration that the vehicle won't be used on the public roads but on tracks and at demonstration runs - towed track cars don't need MOTs after all.

It is therefore up to the driver to ensure they know the risks involved, although perhaps removal companies should be informing them more. As well as an MOT failure if detected, there is also the risk of invalidating your insurance by driving an un-roadworthy vehicle. One forum poster even suggest the HMRC may be interested, as driving a vehicle with a DPF removed will likely push the emissions produced into a higher VED band.

phil@aftermarket.co.uk

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