Diesel delete - What is it and what are the benefits?
Exhaust from a diesel engine is naturally dirty. Soot and carbon from the exhaust will eventually clog up the EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) valve, EGR sensors, EGR cooler, and DPF (diesel particulate filter). Once these components start to clog, performance and fuel economy will drop meaning that these emissions-related parts will have to be cleaned or replaced. Some diesel owners choose to “delete” these emissions components instead.
A diesel delete involves taking out the DEF system, removing the catalytic converter and DPF, and installing a new exhaust without these components. The vehicle’s ECU (engine control unit) is also reprogrammed using a tuner. This tuner will replace the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) software with a new program that controls the fuel delivery and engine timing.
After a diesel delete is completed, there are many benefits the owner will notice. There are performance improvements such as an increase in torque and horsepower, as well as an improvement in fuel economy. Many choose to delete instead of replacing the DPF as the price difference is large, and there are many great benefits to a delete.
The DPF (diesel particulate filter) is a part of every modern diesel exhaust system. It is designed to remove soot from the exhaust. The soot is captured by a canister that is made up of honeycomb-shaped compartments.
Over time these honeycomb canisters become clogged by soot which severely restricts the exhaust and starts what is known as a “regen cycle”. The regen cycle uses diesel fuel to burn off the clogged soot which pushes it out of your exhaust all at once.
Replacing a damaged or defective DPF is typically very expensive. Opting to remove the particulate filter can positively affect your engine’s power, fuel economy, and life. Over the lifetime of your vehicle, the stock DPF system will cause poor fuel economy and power loss as the filter clogs. Once a DPF is removed, fuel economy can improve by up to 30%.
Due to the nature of owning a diesel truck, many use their vehicle for towing or carrying heavy loads. For this reason, many diesel truck owners choose to have a DPF delete done to their vehicles. Many diesel car/SUV owners choose a DPF delete for fuel economy and engine longevity.
The DEF (diesel engine fluid) system works similarly to the DPF, removing soot from your engine’s exhaust, and storing it in a canister within your vehicle. Like the DPF, the DEF system clears out excess soot by starting a regen cycle to burn and blow out the soot.
The diesel engine fluid system can also reduce the performance and fuel efficiency of your vehicle. Even more worrying is that the DEF system can cause issues with freezing up. DEF is mostly a mixture of water, so if you live in a colder climate your DEF system could freeze your fuel within the DEF system.
The exhaust gas recirculation system (EGR) reduces your diesel exhaust emissions with a valve that allows a small amount of vehicle exhaust to mix with the air intake stream to reduce the exhaust emissions.
While this system reduces the amount of exhaust released, it also increases the amount of soot in your engine and reduces performance and fuel economy. The EGR system can also create engine troubles such as sticky valves, leaky cylinders, cracked engine components, and coolant problems.
Performing an EGR delete bypasses the system and helps your diesel engine run cooler while increasing the engine’s lifespan and improving overall performance.
What to Consider Before a Diesel Delete
While a DPF, DEF, and EGR delete will improve the performance of your diesel vehicle and extend the life of the engine, there are certain things you should take into consideration before doing the work:
- Warranties: Tampering with or removing emission components can void your engine’s warranty. Check your vehicle’s warranty policy before performing any sort of delete.
- Restoring Components: If for whatever reason, you decide to restore your vehicles emission components to stock, having the work done and ordering the parts will be very expensive.
- Legalities: In some provinces and states, DEF deletes are illegal. Check with your local laws before making these types of modifications.
Is a Diesel Delete Right For You?
If you own a diesel vehicle and are looking to avoid engine troubles while improving performance and mileage, a diesel delete may be the solution.
To ensure diesel deletes are performed properly and safely, they should be performed by expert technicians.
Our team at T3 Performance has extensive experience in exhaust systems and deletes. We will ensure your diesel vehicle’s delete is installed correctly and all related systems are properly calibrated. We can also guide you when it comes to which kits will best impact your diesel engine and exhaust systems.
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