AdBlue message ‘getting through to drivers’

AdBlue-related breakdown calls to the AA were 5% lower in the first half of this year than in the same period of 2018.

AdBlue usage is rising, due to the rollout of Euro6 emissions regulations and new Selective Catalytic Reduction technology, and the AA attended a record number of 23,000 AdBlue-related breakdowns during the 12 months to June 2018.But now, AA technicians say fewer drivers are running out of the fluid and call-outs as a result of system faults are also falling.

“Last year,” said the AA’s Director of Fleet & SME, Stuart Thomas, “a lack of driver education was leading to significant AdBlue breakdowns, but we are pleased to see that knowledge levels seem to be on the increase.Fleet managers are obviously doing a good job updating drivers on what they need to do.And, if you’ve run out once, you are unlikely to make the same mistake again!”

Given that most cars will need to have their AdBlue topped up at least once between services, it is vital that drivers - especially high-mileage fleet drivers and those who use a variety of different pool cars - are alert to any dashboard warnings.

Stuart Thomas added: “We’ve all done it, jumped into an unfamiliar car and decided to take a chance on leaving the warning lights for the next poor person to get behind the wheel.However, when AdBlue runs out, the engine’s power and performance will be severely limited, and you won’t be able to restart the engine when you stop.The good news is that the warnings will come up with plenty of time to get your car topped up.The onus is on drivers to keep their fleet managers informed if they don’t get it sorted themselves.”

AA technicians are also warning fleets not to be careful during the colder autumn and winter months.“Changes in the driving conditions, whether that is heavy payloads or extreme weather, can significantly impact how quickly you get through your tank of AdBlue,” Stuart Thomas said.“The size of the tank also makes a massive difference.While you might top up anywhere between every 3,000 and 12,000 miles in the spring and summer, this could drop dramatically in the cold weather.”