View Full Version : Problems with the DPF on a 2011 Meriva

17-09-2011, 02:46 PM
I bought an ex-demo 1.3CDTi Meriva at the start of August with 3200kms on it and for the second time in 6 weeks it is going back for a DPF fault.
When I was buying it I told the salesman that I was looking for a petrol model because one of the reasons I was trading the last car was that the DPF light kept coming on every 3-4 months and the car was for my wife who only drives around town, he said Opel had no problems with the new DPF and the one on our old car was a 1st generation version.

3 weeks after buying the car we went to visit relations in Cork, Galway and Sligo and then back to Dublin which was about 1500kms, with the old car that would have done the DPF for 3-4 months but with the Meriva the light and Code 55 came on after 4 days ??? Opel took it back and updated the software and widened the band but 9 days later the light and code is back on the dash again.

Has anyone else found the same fault with the 1.3 CDTi Opel engine ???

17-09-2011, 04:04 PM
Sounds like they haven't is the fault correctly. Can't really help :sorry2 but oldies car is 1.3 cdti and no issues and he driven to Spain and back this year.

17-09-2011, 04:21 PM
I have the Combo my self but it is a 2006 1.3 CDTi with no DPF and have not had 1 problem with it, thats why I went for another 1.3 diesel + the sales man saying that there have been no problems with them and town driving.

17-09-2011, 05:06 PM
few problems with the older models with the 1.3 and dpf but none with the newer type, bring it back to them and tell them to get it sorted or you want your money back, they wont be long getting it sorted then

17-09-2011, 05:29 PM
we had this issue on a 1.9cdti signum, ended up removing the centre from the dpf and getting the ecu reprogrammed so it go in to regeneration. cost about €500 in all I think. no problems since then and that over a year ago now.

17-09-2011, 05:58 PM
we had this issue on a 1.9cdti signum, ended up removing the centre from the dpf and getting the ecu reprogrammed so it go in to regeneration. cost about 500 in all I think. no problems since then and that over a year ago now.

Want to exhaust all with Opel 1st as its only a new car. Was looking into this with the old jeep, there is a company here in Dublin that will do this for 500 aswell.

fast focus
17-09-2011, 08:55 PM
Have replied in the other thread there. let me know what the case is.

17-09-2011, 10:51 PM
The DPF light is not a fault it is a feature. The reason newer models require a regen more often is the emmission regulations have tightened. You were given very bad advice when buying as a diesel does not suit your driving habbit. Have used a 10 Astra 1.3cdti & 10 Insignia 2.0 cdti. Both of them required a regen after a week of driving a round trip of 1.5 miles each way. This is not a fault with the DPF it is a design feature to meet the current emmission laws and qualify for lower road tax. The problem is not the DPF. The problem is the wrong advice. You need a petrol car or be prepared to take your diesel for a 20 min spin at a constant speed once a week. If you remove the DPF it is a strong posibility an NCT emmission failure will result.

18-09-2011, 06:56 PM
i wouldnt be removing the dpf and the car still under warranty, 500 euro is very dear for it, we get them done for 250 euro and break out the centre of the dpf ourselfs, a dpf shouldnt need a regen after a 1.5 mile journey, in the dealer i work in we have a lot of opels coming through the service end and have had very little trouble with newer dpfs, i would be bringing maybe to a different opel garage that might have a better technician,
and also the salesman shouldnt of sold you the car, it doesnt suit your needs we had this problem in the dealer i work with, the salesmen now are pushing the petrol cars rather than the diesels for people who do a lot of short journeys etc

18-09-2011, 10:49 PM
the bottom line is despite having previous issues with DPF due to mileage and driving type, the salesman clearly ignored your information and mis-sold you the car. The DPF will continue to be an issue as the car is incorrect for the usage, I'd be taking it back and demanding my money back or a swap for an equal value petrol one as the car is not fit for purpose.

fast focus
18-09-2011, 11:01 PM
^^^ Thats because unfortunatly a salesman has no clue about the mechanics of a car :sorry2

18-09-2011, 11:12 PM
TBH I cant see how its the salesmans fault. NO car should have issues like this, the DPF shouldn't fu*k itself because you drive the car any which way.
If Opel cant manage to produce/buy in a diesel engine thats capable of being driven normally (even if thats to the shops and back) then it shouldn't be in the lineup IMO

19-09-2011, 08:17 AM
^^^ Thats because unfortunatly a salesman has no clue about the mechanics of a car :sorry2

Opel salesmen seem to be poorly trained on there range
Recently been out with the parents looking for a new run around , went to Opel and the salesman was pushing them towards a Meriva deisel , no question of what sort of driving they did
Left there and went to a Ford dealer and was looking at the C-max , was choice of petrol or deisel , salesman looked at what they was trading in a 7 year old Chevy with 45k miles on it .Straight away the salesman said no way would a deisel be suitable for them due to the low milage they do
He also explained they have a greater problem with deisels now due to poor standard of deisel and many of them not doing the spec mpg

19-09-2011, 08:22 AM
Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF)
Reducing diesel soot emissions by 80%

If you're buying a new car and plan to use it mainly for town-based, stop/start driving it would be wise to avoid a diesel car fitted with a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) because of the possible hassle of incomplete 'DPF regeneration'.

The exhaust emissions standards for new cars have effectively required fitment of a DPF in the exhaust of diesel cars since 2009 when the 'Euro 5' standard came into force. In fact, many cars registered before 2009 will have had one fitted too in anticipation of the change in standards.

Standards aim to deliver an 80% reduction in diesel particulate (soot) emissions but the technology's not without problems AA patrols are regularly called to cars with the particulate filter warning light on indicating a partial blockage of the filter.

Even if your driving isn't mainly urban/stop-start, changes to driving style may be required to get maximum benefit from these systems.

How do they work?
Diesel Particulate filters (DPF) or 'traps' do just that, they catch bits of soot in the exhaust.

As with any filter (think of the bag in your vacuum cleaner) they have to be emptied regularly to maintain performance. For a DPF this process is called 'regeneration' the collected soot is burnt off at high temperature to leave only a tiny ash residue.

Regeneration may be either passive or active.

Passive regeneration
Passive regeneration takes place automatically on motorway-type runs when the exhaust temperature is high. Because many cars don't get this sort of use car manufacturers have to design-in 'active' regeneration where the engine management computer (ECU) takes control of the process.

Active regeneration
When the soot loading in the filter reaches a set limit (about 45%) the ECU can make small adjustments to the fuel injection timing to increase the exhaust temperature and initiate regeneration. If the journey is a bit stop/start the regeneration may not complete and the warning light will come on to show that the filter is partially blocked.

It should be possible to start a complete regeneration and clear the warning light by driving for 10 minutes or so at speeds greater than 40mph.

If you ignore the warning light and keep driving in a relatively slow, stop/start pattern soot loading will continue to build up until around 75% when you can expect to see other dashboard warning lights come on too. At this point driving at speed alone will not be enough and you will have to take the car to a dealer for regeneration.

Expensive repairs
If you continue to ignore warnings and soot loading keeps increasing then the most likely outcome will be that you will have to get a new DPF costing around 1000.

DPF additives
The most commonly fitted type of DPF has an integrated oxidising catalytic converter and is located very close to the engine where exhaust gases will still be hot. This heat means that passive regeneration is possible.

There's not always space close to the engine though so some manufacturers use a different type of DPF which uses a fuel additive to lower the ignition temperature of the soot particles so that the DPF can be located further from the engine.

The additive is stored in a separate tank and is automatically mixed with the fuel whenever you fill up. Only very small quantities are used though so a litre of additive should treat around 2800 litres of fuel enough to cover 25,000 miles at 40mpg.

You will have to pay to get the additive tank refilled at some time in the car's life, and we've heard reports of dealers charging up to 200 to re-fill a half empty tank.

AA experience
We're seeing some evidence of DPF systems failing to regenerate even on cars used mainly on motorways.

On cars with a very high sixth gear the engine revs may be too low to generate sufficient exhaust temperature for regeneration. Occasional harder driving in lower gears should be sufficient to burn off the soot in such cases.

With this type of DPF regeneration will be initiated by the ECU every 300 miles or so depending on vehicle use and will take 5 to 10 minutes to complete. You shouldn't notice anything other than perhaps a puff of white smoke from the exhaust when the process is completed.

There's no evidence in AA breakdown data that the problem's going away newer car models seem just as likely to sufffer DPF problems if not driven 'correctly' as those built when DPF's were introduced.

Check the handbook
If you buy a car with a DPF fitted it's important to read the relevant section of the vehicle handbook so that you understand exactly what actions to take if the warning light illuminates and how, if at all, your driving style may need to be adjusted to ensure maximum DPF efficiency and life.

19-09-2011, 03:15 PM
TBH I cant see how its the salesmans fault. NO car should have issues like this, the DPF shouldn't fu*k itself because you drive the car any which way.
If Opel cant manage to produce/buy in a diesel engine thats capable of being driven normally (even if thats to the shops and back) then it shouldn't be in the lineup IMO

Every manufacturer is currently using dpf technology with diesels for emission standards and they all have the same issues. When soot loaded they must regenerate. To regenerate they must get up to temperature (600deg) for a specific amount of time. This cannot happen on short commutes / town driving. Hence if you do this type if driving no matter how appealing the low road tax on a diesel is it will not suit you. Buy a petrol. You won't have to contend with stuffed Egr valves or rattling dual mass flywheels either. Also not only is fuel quality an issue but the engine oil (low ash) is specifically tailored to DPf use. Using cheep engine oil = DPF blocked.

19-09-2011, 08:45 PM
I still dont buy it. If they can't reach the emissions regs AND make the engine not fark itself just by being used they should either wind back the power until its possible or not put an engine in that bracket.

Making less powerfull diesels just isn't cool though. Everyone wants low mpg racing so they squeeze it.

20-09-2011, 01:15 AM
If you're buying a new car and plan to use it mainly for town-based, stop/start driving it would be wise to avoid a diesel car fitted with a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) because of the possible hassle of incomplete 'DPF regeneration'.

This was one of the main reasons I wanted a petrol in the 1st place, the 1st time the DPF light came on was 4 days after a 1500km trip around Ireland, I would say 60% of the time was spent at motorway speed and the 1.3 Meriva has only a 5 speed box unlike the 1.7 diesel which has a 6 speed so the car was up around the 2500 - 3000 rev range.

As said previously, I was told that to regen the DPF I would have to drive at 3000 revs in 3rd gear for 15 mins and this could happen every 2-3 months.

All I wanted was a safe car that the wife and young fella could get into, start, go where she wanted (weither that be a 5 min drive up to the shops for a litre of milk or a 3 hour drive to Cork to see her sister ) stop and do the same the next day if needed without lights and codes coming on the dash and warning beeps.

Anyway rant over for the time been :) the car is still with Opel as I type and I am due to get a call in the morning with the results, keep ye posted and thanks for all the help and advice.

20-09-2011, 08:49 PM
Well it seams that I am not driving the car properly ???( I have only been driving diesel vehicles for the last 25+ years)

Everything is ok with the DPF and all it needed was a regen again after 120kms.

Now I am waiting on the salesman to get back to me about a replacement petrol car so fingers crossed.

20-09-2011, 09:57 PM
Good Luck with it.

Frisco - I don't disagree with you, but the reality is that the current euro 5 requirements can only be met by diesels fitted with a DPF, and when I was at Renault - Nissan the initial Qashqai's available for about 6 months were all diesel and surprise surprise the salesman sold them to the wrong type of customers despite being on the product knowledge course, Renault also had the same issues with Clio/Megane and Koleos and vans, and in my current role with another Manufcaturer I'm seeing any amount of vans with DPF issues . . . . however these are predominantly related to drivers not understanding the sequence of lights and maintaining the driving style until the DPF is blocked and at which point a forced regen can't be completed.

When you consider we're at a point where HGV's and LGV's can't meet the euro 5 requirements without Adblue it's a sad state of affairs . . .

Salesman are happy to sell what the customer asks for "i.e. the customer perception is that they want a diesel" but taking into account the price premium, the running costs and they are actually spending more money and being hit with DPF problems, they'd spend less on a petrol car and not have the issues, and a salesman's job is all about qualifying the customer . . . .

20-09-2011, 10:13 PM
So there is DPF on vans now ???
I thought the DPF was to lower emissions to suit the new private tax rates where as all commercial vans are the one rate, think i'll stick with my 2006 Combo.

21-09-2011, 11:09 PM
DPF's are currently a major issue on Sprinters up to 4 years old (and Crafters built on the same line) as well as quite a few others . . .

21-09-2011, 11:34 PM
DPF's are currently a major issue on Sprinters up to 4 years old (and Crafters built on the same line) as well as quite a few others . . .

anything to do to avoid it giving trouble?

26-12-2011, 06:04 PM
Has anyone had the dpf removed? and is it worth the +-400-500 euro?


27-12-2011, 05:58 PM
I know a couple of people that have removed dpf's, one on an Octavia VRS and the car has been no end of trouble since, and the other is no better . . .

09-01-2012, 06:44 PM
My car is due a service in about 1500km's, does anyone know if Opel will increase the DPF regen cycle?....they reduced it on the last service down to i think 200kms from 500kms, but it's doing my head in now. So annoying.

If not, i think i will get it serviced elsewhere.

fast focus
09-01-2012, 07:41 PM
You cannot simply increase or decrease the regen cycle with tech2... It's just that the ecu is programmed with the latest software much like your home computer although unlike it you cannot revert to an earlier time.

Now I checked with opel on this the last time you had the fuel consumption concern and they said that the last update I did to your car that time had absolutly no change to anything DPF related so they were puzzled by that.

Something else must have changed to trigger that?

How would you concieve it has changed? I remember in a previous thread where I put up a picture of the DPF light you said you had never seen it before? A regen is only being carried out when this lamp is lit and not at any other time.

I don't understand why you have to get it serviced elsewhere? Was the service not good previously? I can relay concerns you have or is it simply a budget thing?

let me know anyway, if I could do something for ya at all I would only be happy to do so.

10-01-2012, 06:37 PM
A regen is only being carried out when this lamp is lit and not at any other time.

This is interesting as it is the total opposite to what Opel told me.
I was told that the DPF auto re-gens all the time.

fast focus
10-01-2012, 08:23 PM
The glow plug symbol is flashing. Why? What should be

Answer: The DPF regeneration has not been completed during normal
driving and has now reached its maximum saturation at which it can
still be regenerated. The limit value depends on variant and MY,
but is in the range of 105% - 125%.
Possible causes for this are:

a.) Frequent short distance journeys, i.e. high soot loading while at
the same time regeneration of the DPF does not take place because
the conditions necessary were not fulfilled.

b.) Frequent interrupted regenerations, i.e. the engine was switched
off during regeneration. Applies to short journey drivers who
have at least fulfilled the conditions for triggering

Note: Regeneration is carried out more often (2 - 3 times) during
the first 1000 km of driving in order to achieve a defined
loading status of the DPF. This is necessary to reduce
component and system tolerances, and forms the basis for
precise calculation of the soot loading in the DPF.

Important : For both causes if the DPF Lamp is active, engine should
be kept on, e.g. the vehicle should be driven until it goes off.
If DPF regeneration is successfully completed the DPF lamp goes off!

General advice :
Do not perform any service regeneration in case of only having DPF
lamp/code 55 activated

Question 3: What conditions are required for the DPF to begin

Answer: The following conditions must be fulfilled for regeneration to

a.) Engine running since start >
2 minutes.
b.) Calculated saturation >
c.) Coolant temperature >
70C for at least 2 minutes.
d.) No DPF-relevant faults stored in system.
e.) A defined vehicle speed threshold must be exceeded in some cases
(e.g. for 80%-100% loading, one time 100 km/h), at loadings above
100% the speed does not matter.

Question 4: After service regeneration, TECH2 data list shows
a current loading status of 70% or 78%. Why?

Answer: The regeneration intensity of the static regeneration is not
as effective as that of dynamic regeneration. The value is therefore
set to 70% - 78% loading so that the ECU then triggers a dynamic
regeneration when the required conditions (see question 3) are

Exception: Vehicles equipped with 1,7 liter Diesel engine will show
a saturation level of 32% after service regeneration.

Question 5: Under what conditions is regeneration interrupted/ended
once it has started?

Answer: Normally when regeneration has been successfully completed,
a.) After a maximum regeneration time (20 - 25 min.).
b.) If the engine is switched off or has stalled.
c.) If the engine is left idling for a long time (5 - 10 min.).
d.) If 1000C is detected by the exhaust temperature sensor.
e.) If during regeneration, a fault is detected on the components
relevant for combustion (injection/intake system).

If a regeneration is interrupted once started but before it has been
50% completed, the glow plug lamp flashes on the next engine start
(cold or hot) and regeneration begins again once the operating
conditions (see 3) have been fulfilled.

Question 6: The DPF loading is (far) below the threshold value for
the flashing glow plug lamp, but the customer comes in
with the SVS light on and the DPF clogged. Why?

Answer: In this case, there is very likely a hardware fault or tuning.
This fault is usually due to a leak in the air-carrying parts. Often
there is a split in one of the charge air hoses or charge air cooler.
Due to the leak, which the ECU or loading model does not detect, the
engine will emit more smoke if the pressure difference remains below
a defined threshold. The increased smoke emission can clog the DPF.
Furthermore, a disproportionately high loading of the DPF can be due
to a (partly) open EGR valve.

A tuned engine emits more smoke than calculated in the soot loading
model. This may result in a clogged DPF without any customer
In general please check the field remedy database for known fault
pictures and diagnosis instructions.

Question 7: How long does complete regeneration take?
a.) In the most favourable case?
b.) In the least favourable case?

a.) Under constant conditions, i.e. the exhaust temperature
necessary for regeneration always lies above the required value,
for example during motorway/cross-country driving, the average
regeneration time is 10 minutes.

b.) Vehicle conditions such as long down-hill descents, frequent
driving in the low-load range (city driving, idling) allow the
exhaust temperature to fall. If the conditions for triggering
regeneration were fulfilled, the active regeneration time can be
extended up to 25 minutes (depending on engine type). If complete
regeneration is not possible within this period, the regeneration
will be interrupted.

Question 8: How does regeneration affect the oil life?

Answer: On each regeneration or attempted regeneration, a certain
diesel fuel amount is injected into the engine oil which reduces the
oil life. If the "INSP" light in the instrument cluster comes on, the
engine oil is exhausted and must be changed. Failure to do so could
damage the engine.

Question 9: Is the DPF sensor important for the regeneration

Answer: The sensor does not initiate the regeneration, which is based
on a model. The DPF sensor fulfils purely a diagnostic function to
monitor the counter-pressure in the DPF.
Exceptions are the Antara, Captiva, Z20DTx; on these models, the DPF
sensor is involved in triggering the regeneration.

Question 10: How does the Soot loading value in ECU behave?

a.) After SPS programming.
b.) After a change of ECU.
c.) After disconnecting the battery.

a.) After a pure SPS, the loading status is retained. On a change of
ECU or reprogramming of the existing ECU, after reset the loading
status jumps to 104% (e.g. on the Z19DTx), and then regeneration takes
place. Variations are possible depending on model year or application.

b.) The current soot loading value will be stored on Tech 2 flashcard
prior ECU removal. This value will be programmed into new Service ECU
via ECU reprogramming.

c.) No effect.

This is the info I have you can read an interpret as ye like. If ye would like me to explain any of this in further or an easier to understand please ask.

17-06-2012, 06:52 PM
I first brought this problem up in September 2011 and since then there has been no problems with the DPF (what ever opel did the last time it was in).

They serviced it in December and until today the light has not come on. The reason I was surprised the light and code 55 came on is that I am only back (friday night) from a 600km round trip to Sligo and Donegal where the car was sitting between 2500 and 3000 rpm for most of the 2.5hrs back.

Am I back to the old story again ???
Its not the lightest on juice anymore 550 - 600kms around town and at a push 800kms on long trips.

Is there anyone that is independent that I can get to look at the car as I don't trust Opel anymore ???

17-06-2012, 08:25 PM
go to a different dealer instead, i wouldnt not trust opel because of one dealer, and i wouldnt go to an independent if its in warranty, i would still keep bringing it back to the dealer

19-06-2012, 09:40 AM
So I dont need to keep going back to the dealer that I bought it off ???

It came with 3 years free servicing, is that with any Opel garage or the garage I bought it off ???

19-06-2012, 08:51 PM
once you have the card for the free servicing you should be allright, but as for warranty you can take it to any opel dealer

fast focus
19-06-2012, 11:14 PM
You can go to any opel dealer you wish... free servicing can also be carried out in any opel dealer.

19-06-2012, 11:24 PM
Thanks for that, i'll be changing dealers then.:thumbup: