It is necessary to change spark plugs to maintain high performance and gas mileage. It is an easy job for you if you have the all the essential tools. In this article, we are telling you how to change spark plugs. We have seen spark plugs of petrol and LPG Gas powered cars. Electrical current is used to ignite the fuel. Thus the whole procedure is done. It is the main theory of all combustion engines and all latest cars. But with the flow of time, spark plugs also wear out. So you have to fix this and you can do it by yourself.
About Spark Plugs
Car manufacturers want to keep their vehicle’s performance high. So many car manufacturers provide long-lasting spark plugs. There are electrodes in the spark plugs. These electrodes are coated with special metals. These metals have higher melting points.Car manufacturers generally use metals like yttrium, platinum, and iridium.
They all have high melting point but it is not enough. So the electrodes erode. You can’t stop the erosion. So you have to change it one day. It will take only an hour to change your spark plug. So you can save money. 100 bucks is not a small amount. You also don’t need any expensive tools to change it. You will need a ratchet, spark plug socket, gap gauge and torque wrench to tighten the plugs.
When You Should Change Spark plugs
Manufacturers recommend us the replacement at 30,000-mile intervals. So you should keep in mind that not all spark plugs are rated for 100,000 miles.
You should keep the owner’s manual and follow the safest spark plug service intervals given in your owner’s manual. If you don’t have the manual and don’t know the current condition of your spark plug, just pull them and also check the condition of your spark plug.
Tools You Require
- A ratchet socket drive wrench
- An extension bar
- Spark plug socket
- A spark gap gauge or feeler gauge
It is not a difficult task. So you can do it by yourself and save your precious money. You just follow the procedure step by step
Step 1: Locate The Spark Plugs In Your Car
- Read the owner’s manual. You will know where your spark plug is.
- There is a hood or bonnet in the car. You have to open the hood or bonnet first.
- After that, you will see that a group of different wires leading towards different points on the engine compartment.
- At the end of these wires, the spark plugs are located at the engine.
- If your car has a 4-cylinder engine, the spark plugs will be situated on the top or side of the engine in a row.
- If your car has a6-cylinder, they are situated on the top or side of the engine head.
- For V6 and V8-cylinder engines, the spark plugs are distributed evenly on each side of the engine.
- If your car has an engine cover you will have to remove it. So you can see the spark plug wires, tracing them back to find the plugs themselves.
You should always read your owner’s manual to know the exact location of your spark plugs. You can also know the number of spark plugs of your car, exact GAP by reading the manual. So don’t be lazy. Read the manual perfectly. It is very important.
Step 2: Cool Your Engine
- Before removing your spark plug it is important to cool your engine. You should touch them when they are cool enough. Because safety is also very important.
- If you’ve been running the car for a while the engine will become very hot. Therefore the plugs and the whole car engine parts will become very hot. So after a ride it is necessary to leave your car idle for some time. Thus it will cool down.
- As you know it will take some time to cool down the engine. You can use this time to collect your tools while you wait for your engine to cool.
Step 3: Remove The First Spark Plug
- I hope you are car engine is in normal temperature. So, now you can remove the first spark plug from your engine.
- Grip the wire plug as closely to the bottom as possible and pull it. Do it gently and carefully. So you can reveal the spark plug off the engine perfectly.
Don’t use too much force while pulling the wire plug. Yanking is not the best option for this kind of job. You don’t want a ruined spark plug.
- Now you should fit the socket wrench with the extension bar. Now use the ratchet carefully to remove the spark plug from its housing slowly. There is no need to do this quickly.
- It is time to check the first spark plug. Gently remove one spark plug.
- Check the gap of the first spark plug.
- If you see the contacts are burnt out, you have to refit the plug and then go to the auto parts store and get new plugs before removing any more spark plugs.
- You should understand that you will need to remove the plugs one by one. Thus you can keep track of the order of the plugs.
- We all know that spark plugs fire in a specific order. So crossing a wire to the wrong plug will make the engine run rough or not at all. If the order is not perfect there will be a chance of damaging your whole car engine. You don’t want that.
Step 4: Measuring The Gap
- Now it is time to measure the gap. In this case, anywhere between 0.028-0.060 inch should be the specific measurement, with a bit of moving room which is depending on your particular set of plugs of your car.
- Now-a-days, we find most of the plugs are preset with respect to the model number of the plug and their applications. Though it is your duty to double check.
- Read your owner’s manual to find out the perfect distance for your spark plug gap.
- You can use a gap checker or feeler gauge to check the distance perfectly.
- If the distance of the gap is higher than it should be but it is fixable, you can either try to change the gap by slowly tapping the plug on a wooden (not so hard) surface with the gauge in between the plug gap until the desired measure is set at the correct measurement or you can simply buy new plugs. But it is better to buy new plugs.
- Spark plugs are not so expensive. So it is a good idea to replace them at regular intervals for tension free motoring and a proper spark.
Step 5: Check The Existing Spark Plug
- It is natural that the spark plug will become dirty after a long time. So if you see any white and limey spot around the electrodes of the plugs you will have to change it. Again, if you see any burning spot and any part of the electrode is missing you will also have to change it.
- You may have a mechanical problem with your engine if the plugs are bent, black, or broken.In this case, you should take your car to a mechanic. So he can solve the problem.
Have A Look How To Remove Old Spark Plugs And Install New One
Step 1: Get The New Perfect Plugs
- Here, you will need your owner’s manual once again. By reading the owner’s manual you will know the exact model of the spark plug. You can also find booklet at the auto parts store that corresponds to your model and year of manufacture.
- There are different kinds of spark plugs available in the market. Most of the spark plugs are made of platinum, yttrium, and iridium etc. The prices of these different spark plugs are also different. Generally, the price range is less than 2 dollar to 15 dollars.
- Iridium, platinum, yttrium are very expensive metals. Because of their high melting point. So, manufacturers use these metals instead of using copper to manufacture these spark plugs.
Step 2: Cleaning The Threads
- Cleaning is very important. You should clean around the threads before inserting the new spark plugs. Do the cleaning perfectly.
- When you’re changing your plugs you will have a chance to check the wires. You can know the condition of the wires. You can also have the opportunity to clean up around the wire terminal perfectly.
- You can use the wire brush to do the cleaning. You can also use compressed air to clean up around the wire connections. If the wires are damaged you should replace them. It will be good your engine.
Step 3: Insert New Plugs
- Now it is time to insert new spark plugs.and tighten with your ratchet.
- You should remove each of the spark plugs one by one from the engine and replace each with a new spark plug by using the spark-plug socket.
- You should tighten each of the spark plugs with your ratchet. But too tight is not good. Tighten a bit (say, 1/8th of a turn) past hand-tight only.
- You have to remember the order of the spark plugs. We told you before that spark plugs fire in a specific order. So crossing a wire to the wrong plug will make the engine run rough or not at all. If the order is not perfect there will be a chance of damaging your whole car engine. You don’t want that.
Step 4: Lubricating The Plug
- You have to lubricate the plugs before installing them. It is very important. you will find different lubricating oil available in the market.
- If you are installing them in an aluminum engine you should try putting a small amount of anti-seize lubricant on the plug threads.
- The anti-seize lubricant is very helpful to prevent the reaction between dissimilar metals.
- A small amount of dielectric silicone compound can be applied on the inside of the spark plug wire boot to make the plugs easier to remove in the future.
- You can avoid damaging the head and plugs if you turn the plug backwards on the thread until you have located the hole.
- You have to make sure that you have put the spark plug wire-boot back on the spark plug. Don’t forget about it.
- Push on it a little harder to get it to “snap” on.
- The engine will misfire if you don’t put it on correctly. You don’t want that.
I hope that now you know about how to change spark plugs. If you find your spark plugs cranked, full black or something like that, you should not change your spark plugs before consulting with an expert mechanic. We hope that you found this article useful. If you liked this article and know any other methods please a leave a comment below and let us know.