What are the benefits of changing spark plugs?
Do new spark plugs improve engine performance?
In this article, we’ll cover 5 benefits of changing spark plugs, so you have a clearer picture when deciding to switch them. We’ll also answer some related questions, including how often you need to change your spark plugs and a convenient solution to replacing a worn spark plug.
This Article Contains:
- 5 Benefits Of Changing Spark Plugs
- 4 Spark Plug FAQs
5 Benefits Of Changing Spark Plugs
Spark plugs are responsible for the electric spark that ignites the air-fuel mixture in the combustion chamber by carrying a high voltage current from the ignition coil. As your spark plugs start to wear out, you need to replace them with fresh spark plugs.
Note: A spark plug replacement is usually accompanied by getting new wires. A worn spark plug wire often fails to properly transmit the high voltage current from the ignition coil to the cylinder head.
Spark plug replacement not only yields higher results for your vehicle but also offers several other benefits. These include:
1. Optimum Functioning Of The Combustion Engine
Spark plugs are responsible for the combustion of the air-fuel mixture inside the combustion chamber. An old spark plug can mess with the car’s gas mileage and require more power to keep the vehicle running.
Properly functioning spark plugs positively affect your car’s performance. Getting a new set routinely ensures that your engine stays in good shape, and you save hundreds on repair in the long run.
2. Increased Fuel Efficiency
The National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence reported that an old spark plug or faulty plug could lead to engine misfires, resulting in a 30% lower fuel economy for your car. A worn spark plug will also increase the drivers’ costs. These included maintenance, fuel refills, etc.
Without a strong enough spark to fully ignite the air-fuel mixture, the engine churns more fuel to start the combustion. Spark plugs are bound to get less efficient with time. But changing them can prevent this and restore your car’s fuel efficiency, fuel economy, and gas mileage to its original state!
3. Smooth Start-Up Performance
As your spark plugs age, they start affecting your car’s performance. An old spark plug can cause rough idling, engine idling, and poor acceleration.
You’ll also notice that worn spark plugs have a wider spark plug gap due to wear. This, in turn, interrupts the consistent combustion system leading to rough idling, poor acceleration, and engine misfire.
But all of this goes away when you get a new spark plug set!
4. Lower Carbon Emission
Worn spark plugs put a lot of pressure on your engine. Since new spark plugs should be appropriately gapped at installation, they’ll operate at optimum power. This results not only in improved fuel economy but also in reduced harmful emissions!
In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency reports that regular car maintenance (especially replacing a worn-out spark plug) can substantially reduce your car’s harmful emissions.
5. Improved Horsepower
Finally, new spark plugs can greatly improve your car’s horsepower and overall engine performance. When you change your worn-out spark plug with fresh spark plugs, you’ll notice a much faster engine response when driving.
While spark plugs don’t technically increase your engine’s horsepower, they bring it back to its optimal combustion level. In simple words, your car will run as if it’s new with optimum acceleration control and improved fuel economy!
Keeping that in mind, let’s look at some other related queries about spark plugs.
4 Spark Plug FAQs
Here are a few of the most asked questions about spark plugs, along with their answers:
1. How Often Do I Need To Change My Spark Plugs?
Spark plug replacement intervals depend on your driving habits and the type of spark plug you use. You’ll generally encounter two types of spark plugs — conventional spark plugs and long-life spark plug units.
Conventional spark plugs typically last for 30,000-50,000 miles, although some conventional plugs can go as long as 60,000 miles.
On the other hand, a long-life spark plug can last you for 100,000 miles or more!
Iridium plugs can last even longer.
You can also refer to your manufacturers’ manual to determine the recommended changing interval for your worn-out spark plug. If you’ve upgraded your new spark plug, consult your mechanic before making any changes.
2. Can I Replace My Spark Plugs In Advance As A Precaution?
Spark plugs are usually replaced as a preventative measure, meaning that you don’t have to wait to replace them until they cause engine misfire or other issues.
It’s okay to replace your conventional spark plugs at 50,000 miles if your mechanic recommends going up to 60,000 miles. And most people don’t wait 120,000 miles to replace their long-life spark plug set.
The key here is to perform regular spark plug inspections. As spark plugs wear down over time, some cars may require changing way before their regulated interval.
In most cases, you want to look out for signs that indicate bad spark plugs or an unresponsive engine. These include poor acceleration, rough idling, engine noise due to misfire, etc. Monitor how often you encounter these signs, and arrange for a spark plug checkup.
3. Do All Spark Plugs Need To Be Replaced At Once?
Most mechanics recommend changing your spark plugs as a set.
- Your spark plugs need to be on similar levels of performance for optimal combustion.
- If one of your plugs were performing well while others were old and rusty, it would put the engine out of sync.
- Changing single plugs messes with their rotation interval. You’d have to inspect your spark plugs twice as much if each of them were on separate replacement intervals.
- Your spark plugs should have the same electrical resistance throughout. If one performs slightly better than the others, the engine loses its balance. It puts more pressure on your otherwise consistent combustion system and leads to excess wear and tear.
Replacing all worn spark plugs is a standard maintenance practice, and it’s best to stick to it. You’ll be saving more time and effort in the long run!
4. What Is A Convenient Solution For Spark Plug Replacement?
Spark plug replacement can seem daunting if you haven’t done it before. You’d need to make sure they’re correctly gapped and installed with the proper torque.
Someone with decent mechanical knowledge should be able to change a worn spark plug. If this isn’t you, you can always reach out for help!
Why not reach out to RepairSmith?
RepairSmith is a mobile auto repair and maintenance solution that offers competitive and upfront pricing. You can get all your repairs done at home by our top certified mechanics.
Fill out this online form to get a cost estimate for spark plug replacement.
A new spark plug can do wonders for your car’s performance. Routine spark plug replacement will lead to increased fuel economy and fuel efficiency and improve your car’s horsepower.
So how do you know when it’s time to change your spark plugs?
Well, one way is to keep track of its mileage. You can also look out for symptoms of bad spark plugs and get regular vehicle inspections done.
If you need any help with car problems (spark plugs or otherwise), just get in touch with RepairSmith and benefit from a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty on all repairs!