VAB expects lots of breakdowns at restart
Flemish Mobility club, VAB, expects a significant increase in battery and particulate filter problems in cars in the coming days and weeks. A survey carried out by VAB among more than 10 000 motorists shows that they hardly used the car during the lockdown.
Few rides, short distances
7% of the cars remained stationary all the time, and more than one in four vehicles was used only sporadically. Because the car was often used for short journeys, the battery was discharged rather than charged.
“To charge a battery, you have to drive at least 30 kilometers at a constant speed, preferably on the highway,” VAB says. The survey also shows that only 8% of the people who were working during the lockdown still drove more than 30 kilometers.
Particulate filter problems
VAB also expects more soot filter problems because the particulate filters have not been able to regenerate for a long time. “For the regeneration of a particulate filter, several conditions have to be met.
The engine must be at operating temperature, and the temperature in the exhaust is increased to 500 to 600°C during regeneration. It takes about ten kilometers for the car to reach operating temperature.
The journey also has to be long enough to complete the regeneration, burning the accumulated soot in the filter. When making a series of short trips, the system can fail due to many unfinished regeneration attempts,” VAB continues.
If the particulate filter light (exhaust icon) should light up, a forced regeneration must be carried out by the garage. “It is best to go to the garage as soon as possible if the particulate filter light stays on because a new particulate filter quickly costs more than 1 000 euros,” VAB warns.