Despite Dodge’s larger diesel engines being manufactured by Cummins, they took another route for the 3.0 EcoDiesel. Released in 2014, it’s a 3.0L V6 turbo-diesel and is offered in half-ton Ram 1500 trucks and Jeeps.
While the engine is different than the 6.7 Cummins, the emissions systems are virtually the same. However, the biggest drawback to using a non-Cummins diesel is that the EcoDiesel has disastrous emissions systems. EGR cooler failure is among one of the most common 3.0 EcoDiesel problems.
While the emissions systems on the EcoDiesel are good for reducing emissions, they are bad for reliability and maintenance costs. Outside of the EGR cooler, the DPF system is prone to clogging and both of these items are very expensive to replace without warranty. And in addition to reliability issues, the DPF system also restricts performance potential.
Deleting the EcoDiesel DPF system in Ram 1500’s and Jeep Grand Cherokee is popular for both performance and reliability purposes. This guide is going to discuss the EcoDiesel emissions equipment, the pros and cons of deleting the DPF system, and how-to delete the DPF.
What is the EcoDiesel DPF?
DPF stands for diesel particulate filter. It is essentially similar to a traditional catalytic converter but its job is to capture diesel particulates. When diesel fuel burns a byproduct is small chemical particulates that are bad for both the environment and human health (when inhaled).
The DPF filter is in the exhaust system and captures these particulates before they escape to the atmosphere. They are trapped into a catch can and then are further burned down via regeneration cycles.
The DPF system however is slightly more complicated in that it is incorporated with a number of other emissions equipment. The 3.0 EcoDiesel for example also has SCR, DOC, DEF, and EGR systems. All of this equipment sits within the exhaust with the exception of the EGR system which occurs pre-exhaust.
The DOC, or diesel oxidation catalyst, is the first exhaust emissions equipment. It functions like a normal catalytic converter, but for diesel gases. Next is SCR, or selective cat reduction, which is the equipment that uses DEF fluid to burn nitrous oxide. And then you reach the DPF system which is actually integrated into the same pipe as SCR.
So all of these different pieces of emissions equipment sit within the exhaust. Henceforth, the 3.0 EcoDiesel exhaust system looks like this: downpipe > DOC > SCR > DPF > muffler.
The last system is EGR, or exhaust gas recirculation. This is technically the first piece of equipment since it captures exhaust gases before they enter the exhaust and then recirculates it back into the intake ports to re-burn the gases.
What Does Deleting the 3.0 EcoDiesel DPF Remove?
Deleting the DPF system in the 3.0 EcoDiesel actually removes a lot more than the DPF. A DPF delete will also remove the DOC and SCR equipment. And since the diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) is tied into the SCR system, you will no longer need to fill-up on DEF fluid, so this gets removed as well.
Deleting the EcoDiesel will remove:
- DOC – first portion of the exhaust
- SCR & DPF – integrated into the same piping
- DEF – no longer need to fill this up so the tank either gets plugged or can be uninstalled
Therefore, deleting the EcoDiesel removes every single emissions system that sits within the exhaust. Also, while this might sound like a lot of equipment to remove, a delete kit is simply one piece of exhaust piping that bolts up to the turbo and to the muffler, so it’s actually really simple.
EcoDiesel EGR Delete
Since the EGR is pre-exhaust, it does not get removed when the DPF is deleted. Therefore, it will need to be removed separately with its own delete kit.
An EGR delete is a bit more complicated since there are a lot of hoses and valves that are used. This makes installing an EGR delete a bit more complicated, although not overly challenging. It is more challenging than the DPF delete though since this is simple one pipe that needs to be installed.
Additionally, you have devices like the EGR cooler as well that also need to be removed. The EGR cooler isn’t really that restrictive from a performance perspective, so deleting it is predominantly for reliability and preventative maintenance. Since the EGR cooler fails so frequently on these EcoDiesels, it could be worth it either to do it upfront, or once the cooler fails.
The last point on the EGR is that it is also not great for reliability and gas mileage. It essentially cycles exhaust gas into the combustion chamber. Diesel exhaust gas is filled with particulates and diesel soot. Circulating these back into the engine isn’t good for engine longevity.
EGR Delete Kits
Since the EGR is not deleted from a DPF delete, you will need a separate delete kit. If you plan on deleting the DPF then it probably makes sense to also delete the EGR as most delete tuners will also tune out of the functionality of the EGR. Doing so will help lower EGTs, prevent soot buildup in the valves, and improve turbo efficiency.
3.0 EcoDiesel DPF Delete Benefits
There are 2 reasons for deleting the EcoDiesel DPF on your Ram 1500 or Jeep:
- Reliability and reduced maintenance costs
The 3.0 EcoDIesel does not have a good reputation for reliability. Especially when towing. This is because this engine does not respond well to heat. And the DPF system causes a lot of engine heat via exhaust backpressure. Therefore, it makes your engine healthier overall but also removes components that cost thousands to replace when they break.
Secondly, exhaust backpressure is bad for the turbo and it’s efficiency. Therefore, it is restrictive to performance. Removing the system improves performance and performance potential.
EcoDiesel DPF Delete Pro’s:
- Power gains up to 50whp with tune (gains mostly from tune)
- 1-3mpg fuel economy improvements
- Better turbo efficiency and reliability
- Lower EGTs
- Decreased exhaust backpressure
- Bye bye DEF and regen cycles
- Better reliability and less maintenance costs
From a performance perspective, this is maybe one of the lesser reasons to delete the DPF. You can drop a tune on the 3.0 EcoDiesel and see solid power gains even with the DPF still on.
However, the one caveat is that extra power = extra heat. And as we discussed above, the EcoDiesel does not like heat and already runs really hot, especially when towing. Therefore, tuning this engine with deleting the DPF can have a big impact on reliability.
EcoDiesel Delete Cons
With all the positives also comes a lot of negatives. This isn’t a decision to make lightly, based on these downsides:
- Lower resale value
- Voids all warranty
- It is technically illegal – you won’t pass emissions
- Dealers and even some mechanics won’t work on your truck
- Must DIY the installs
- It is bad for the environment
- You have to use a tuner
The biggest hurdle you will need to get over here is that it is completely illegal. Places like California will impound and crush your truck, other places might just give you hefty fines if you get caught. However, you might not care about the legalities (or the environmental concerns). There are still some downsides in that it makes everything a hassle: inspection, repairs, resale, and so on.
Should You Delete Your EcoDiesel?
Improved reliability, better gas mileage, and no DEF fluid sounds great. Not to mention more performance potential. But, if you aren’t chasing huge power goals then the decisions comes down to reliability vs your comfort dealing with the hassles of owning a deleted truck.
The EcoDiesel isn’t very reliable so we understand the desire to improve reliability and decrease ownership costs. Unfortunately, excess engine heat can cause a number of other system failures on these engines. We would normally just say delete the emissions equipment when it fails. But the problem is this equipment also contributes to higher EGTs and heat is the downfall of the 3.0L.
If you don’t tow and aren’t looking for crazy power, then we would probably suggest keeping your DPF and emissions equipment. If you do tow frequently then there is a better case for a delete since towing is a huge cause of problems for the EcoDiesel.
At the end of the day, should you do it is only something you can answer. Dealing with a deleted truck is a hassle, but you might be willing to deal with the hassle over ending up a few thousand bucks in the drain on repairs.
How to Delete the 3.0 EcoDiesel DPF
For those than don’t care about the downsides, here is how you delete the 3.0 EcoDiesel DPF:
- DPF Delete Kit
- Tuner and custom tune
1) DPF Delete Kit
DPF delete kits are actually pretty affordable since it’s literally just a straight exhaust pipe that goes from the turbo to muffler. It is usually a direct bolt-on and shouldn’t require much modification. You have a few options in terms of how much of the exhaust you want to replace.
You can stick with just the emissions portion of the exhaust, or you can opt for a full turbo-back exhaust system. You can either keep the muffler, or go muffler delete if you want a significantly louder truck. Most simple delete kits will be around $250, while going with a full exhaust system will run you $500+.
The biggest decision here is how loud you want your truck or Jeep to be. Just doing the emissions section will have some sound gains, but nothing crazy. Straight-piping from the turbo back will be on the opposite end of the spectrum.
As a side note, the downpipe on the EcoDiesel is really more like a small elbow. So most delete kits bolt to the turbo, instead of to the downpipe.
Best Delete Kits: Diesel Dudes 3.0L EcoDiesel DPF Delete Kit
Diesel Dudes is one of the few reputable companies out there that still sells delete kits. Their kits currently only work for 2014-2018 EcoDiesels but they do sell tuners with pre-loaded delete kits for 2019+ models for anyone that has a delete kit for their later model 3.0’s.
Buy Here: 3.0 EcoDiesel DPF Delete Kit
2) Tuner & DPF Delete Tune
The second thing you need is a tuner and a DPF tune. These emissions systems have various sensors hooked up to them that need to be tuned out. Deleting the DPF without a tune will throw the car into limp mode and it will barely be drivable.
The downside is, there aren’t any off the shelf tuners that come with DPF delete tunes since selling these is illegal. Fortunately, Diesel Dudes still sells pre-loaded tuners with DPF delete tunes. HP Tuners is the only device that works for the 3.0 EcoDiesel unless you go the custom tuning route with something like Ez Lynk. The downside is that the HP Tuners costs about $1,500.
Buy here with pre-loaded delete tunes: Iron Loader DPF Delete Tuner 3.0L EcoDiesel
3.0L EcoDiesel DPF Delete Summary
The Ram and Jeep EcoDiesel has four main emissions systems. EGR, DOC, SCR, and DPF. The EGR system sits in the engine while the remaining systems, including DEF, are part of the exhaust. Deleting the DPF system will remove all of the emissions equipment in the exhaust (SCR, DOC, DPF, and no need for DEF anymore). The EGR system and cooler must be deleted separately.
All of this equipment is prone to failing, and it is all very expensive to replace. Also, it creates a lot of backpressure within the exhaust system which leads to higher EGTs and engine temps which is bad for reliability. Therefore, deleting the DPF is popular for preventative maintenance and reliability purposes. There are some performance benefits, but these only really come into play when you are upgrading the turbo and so on.
Deleting this emissions equipment will give you a healthier and more reliable engine. However, this comes at the sacrifice of legality. Deleting any emissions equipment is illegal and can result in hefty fines. It also won’t pass inspection, will lose warranty, and will create headaches with some maintenance and repair things.
Looking for more 3.0 EcoDiesel upgrades? Check out our guide on the best 3.0 EcoDiesel Performance Upgrades.