So these diesel particulate filters on the new fords are driving us crazy. We are a small rural volunteer department with a average run distance of about 7 miles one way . We have been unable to get any real information from Ford and the manuals are useless. It appears to us that we have no control over when the cleaning cycle begins or ends. This means it can start when we are on a scene over dry grass or as we back into the station after a 2 am call. It appears that it won't clean when parked but I can't seem to get that confirmed. It also appears that when it says "Drive to Clean" it means it and you don't dare just park the truck even if it is as you return to the station at 2am. The last time this happened we had to drive out of district 40 miles to get the warning to clean. Failure to follow this causes at a minimum the truck to be serviced to clear the computer and possibly a few thousand dollar repair job.

If anyone can clarify any of this information I am all ears. We sure can't get anything confirmed from Ford or even our EVT

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Does this unit have a high idle kicker? If so use it. The system will self clean when ever exhaust temps are over a certain threshold.(I have the exact figure written down at work, but i can't remember it) This is passive regeneration, and you will never know that it is happening. If exhaust temps are not hot enough and the DPF is plugged enough for a regen, the vehicle will enter active regen.(when active regen is required the message center displays "drive to clean exhaust system". All that happens in active regen is,the PCM injects fuel on the exhaust stroke to pump it into the exhaust system and "light off" the converter to raise exhaust temps. According to Ford this can happen while the vehicle is at an idle. In my experience, the harder you work these new diesels,the better off you will be.
Some of the problems have to do with all the cold starts and cold shut downs. If a unit is started run out on the apron to check equipment and do a light check, it may not run long enough to bring it up to operating temp, usually 185 degrees. Moving apparatus to reload hose, fill a low water tank or just moving the unit to set up for a function can cause two things, low battery amps (can burn up a starter) and cause frequent regen cycles.
I am not sure about Ford but the Cummins and International systems can be regenerated to clean the filters in park using high idle.
These units have quick ref on the sun visor.
At times the smaller units Fords, Chevy and Dodge are used to run errands too, short runs, fast runs and sometimes long idle run times, could cause these problems.
It may help when the unit is setting parked and running click on the high idle. Using the high idle about 900-1000 RPM allows max output of the Alt. also.
I remember using the big diesel engines, having a small exhaust cooler line from the pump, now the exhaust is run without an extention and comes straight out the side just under the running board. The pump engineer can open a cooler line for high engine temp, or if the pump is not discharging water to cool the pump? I guess the high regen temp. can cause a grass fire, but that exhaust pipe is really clean.

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