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Volvo D13 headed for DEF Derate


trimster
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Got a dash message..." DEF system detects bad DEF. Derate in 60 min."

I ran it to the the next town and did a parked Re-gen. New message is "120 min to de-rate". Got to the campground in an hour so I have time on the de-rate clock. Soot level is between 2 and 3.

DEF was purchased from a Volvo dlr in June 23, 2021. I have a half DEF tank left.

Does this stuff have a shelf life in the truck tank?

Otherwise, I need some help on this one. I'm in Bernalillo, New Mexico, west of Albq.

Thanks

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DEF "shelf life" is two years (possibly longer). RVTravel.com was following this problem and, in the last month or so, a software work-a-round was created. If I remember correctly, said work-a-round does NOT solve the problem. It supposedly STOPS the "De-Rate" from kicking in. You'll still get warning lights which can't be reset until the problem HAS been corrected. 

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The RVTravel fix is for Cummins engines. Mine is a volvo. Not sure that will work. 

But I am going to start cheap... replacing the DEF filter. Found one at a local NAPA store. Easy replacement location.

I'm not sure what has been done with this truck by the past owner, as far as annual maintenance. The dealership I bought it from threw out all the records left in the truck. So, we'll start with this filter and work our way to the spendy stuff.

Edited by trimster
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You can have bad DEF fluid and that is easy to check with a DEF Refractometer.

Amazon.com: OTC 5025 Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) Refractometer : Automotive 

The main problem is in the DEF sensor head. It is located in the DEF tank and combines a level sensor, quality sensor, temp sensor and a heater unit. There is a problem with all of them due to the corrosive nature of DEF fluid. I think Kenworth has 15,000 on backorder with MHC Kenworth having about 8,000 of those on backorder.

Paccar and Cummins both have a software work around that was approved by the EPA to temporally "ignore" the DEF head issues until they can be replaced. They will record the VIN number of the truck when they put the software fix on it and you have to go back and get the sensor head replaced when it becomes available.

There are guys that have been sitting at our local dealer since June waiting on a sensor head.

We had the same issue and were lucky enough to get a replacement sensor head but if you try to find an OEM or aftermarket sensor head, make sure you get the right one. There are 3 different part numbers on our KW and they are not interchangeable.

Edited by GeorgiaHybrid
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26 minutes ago, Darryl&Rita said:

Ewww! Can you track down a guy with a laptop, to go through all the parameters in your truck? Some manufacturers have a mileage/engine hour timer for that filter. It seems that should have been caught when you got the truck inspection done at purchase.

Ya, inspection. It was a contentious purchase with Rush. Not much got done that should have. 

I think I'm gonna buy a code resetter. Not sure which one yet.

Re-gen in progress. Fingers crossed.

Edited by trimster
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Just got back from the volvo dlr here in Albuquerque.  Computer points to the SCR. Ugh. Spendy part. 

The service writer confirms what we mostly know, bad DEF is rarely the issue. "Typically some sensors get out of whack and all the computer knows how to respond is bad DEF." He also felt that the SCR failure is a bit premature in his experience. 

Truck goes in first thing tomorrow for the tech to prove further. A hard/hot regen might fix it....for now.

 

 

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It looks like the NOx sensors (aftermarket) are causing issues. Has thrown 190 errors since the computer was cleared in July. Sensors have been in the truck since July last year.

Still not convinced that this is the problem. More like service does not like them & want to sell factory....and they are charging me $250 core charge because they can't return them for Re-man. Not sure that's legit. 

So out the door...$2500. Parts, 4hrs labor, tax, core charge, regen included. 

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Your aftermarket sensors, or from the sales yard? Sounds sketchy either way. A local dealership got caught red-handed a few years back when they tried to refuse warranty work on trucks with sensors from other brand dealerships. Swapped in their own shelf stock, and the problems remained. The deals included core charges, supposed re-programming to remove the bad sensors, etc. Tsk, tsk. This wasn't a case of freightliner parts on a Volvo, but KW on a Pete.

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46 minutes ago, Darryl&Rita said:

Your aftermarket sensors, or from the sales yard? Sounds sketchy either way. A local dealership got caught red-handed a few years back when they tried to refuse warranty work on trucks with sensors from other brand dealerships. Swapped in their own shelf stock, and the problems remained. The deals included core charges, supposed re-programming to remove the bad sensors, etc. Tsk, tsk. This wasn't a case of freightliner parts on a Volvo, but KW on a Pete.

Bought the sensors thru eBay as I recall.

I can't let let this go. Calling dlr service departments I trust for research.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Okay then.... core charge for NOx sensors is a thing. Legit. And of course the only take back factory cores.

The truck is back on track. Running great. Soot levels are now very low. We'll see how it goes.

The tech indicated that the next thing that will fail, based on their experience, is the SCR and that should happen around 700k miles. I'm at 668k. The SCR is a spendy bugger to say the least. So will I put on 40k miles over the next few years? Maybe not. 

This truck performs so well now. A pleasure to drive.

Travel day tomorrow from where we are outside Albq. to the Petrified Forest for a few days. Then on to Phoenix for 2 weeks. 

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Just read this.  Hope it’s running great still.  I bought nox sensors from eBay also.  Still good after 2 or so years.  Maybe just luck, but that doesn’t fit the usual pattern.
I bought some fuel in Rock Springs and a few miles down the road got the forced regen derate message.  (Which we did. First forced regen ever)  Check engine has been coming and going, and soot level has been creeping up.  
For the previous month I had been driving short distance without getting up to temp twice a day.  During or afterward never got any messages.  Then drove most of the day to get to Rock Springs.  No message.  So far I blame my errors on the fuel.

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