Changing the spark plugs
Changing the spark plugs on a car is another of those basic car care items that every driver should know how to do. On older cars
it was recommended to change the spark plugs as frequently as every 10,000 miles. Modern cars have suprisingly longer timelines for
replacement. In fact, the 2002 Honda Civic manual recommends changing them at 100,000 miles! Now, this being said, I'm in the old school
camp and like to change my plugs more frequently. Having spark plugs in their peak state ensures
that the vehicle is running as efficiently
as possible. And with a price range of $5 to $20 dollars, it's cheap.
In addition to this, regularly changing spark plugs, when done at home, gives you the perfect opportunity to examine the car and
look for possible problems. Remember, it's always easier and cheaper to do preventative maintenance
before you have a critical problem.
Now, realistically, the process for changing spark plugs is nearly identical for all vehicles. Remove the old plug, examine it and then
replace it with a new one. With older cars you'll also have spark plug wires, distributor caps and rotors to check. If the car is old enough
you'll also have distributor points to maintain. With some modern cars the ignition coil attaches directly to the plug, and you will only have
the plug itself to deal with.
The golden rules of spark plug changes are: always use anti=sieze on the plug threads and always be careful
threading the new plug into the block. There's nothing worse than stripping the block threads, as it's an expensive and unnecessary repair!
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