The spark plug is one important component of the engine. Its purpose is to ignite the air or fuel mixture inside the engine cylinder. An electrical energy is transmitted into the spark plug and ignites the fuel and air mixture in the engine combustion chamber. Another function of the spark plug is to help remove heat from the combustion chamber or the engine's cylinder.
Like all other parts found on a certain vehicle, spark plugs can also eventually wear out and won’t work properly. As an owner, you should check and maintain your spark plugs or replace it if necessary. According to the Car Care Council, spark plugs are commonly replaced between driving range of about 30,000 and 100,000 miles, depending on the vehicle and spark plug type (Volkswagen spark plug for instance). Knowledge about spark plug operation, maintenance, and service can increase engine performance, resulting to an improved driving performance. This article will help you out maintain and replace your spark plugs, assuming that you have a Volkswagen vehicle.
Damage spark plugs will activate the SERVICE ENGINE SOON or CHECK ENGINE light to appear on your vehicle's information panel. This is a sign that you should check your engine spark plugs and other engine parts for damages. When removing the spark plug, use a compressed air to blow out all foreign materials like dust or smoke leftovers around the base of the spark plug. Do not pull the Volkswagen spark plug wires. Instead, remove the spark plug from the terminal boot. You can do this by using a numbered clothespin to clip the wire.
Next, identify the correct cylinder with the spark plug and check for spark plug and cylinder malfunctions. Start cleaning the spark plug with a typical solvent. Make sure to clean the paint insulation, and other dirt particles including carbon and oxides left by fuels. After doing this, you can now eliminate other unwanted particles like dust (if ever) in the cylinder head thread as well as plug thread using a steel brush. This will ensure a clean contact between the new spark plug and the cylinder. Lastly, you should adjust the gap between the ground and electrode to the manufacturer's specifications.
Now in installing a new spark plug, always make sure cylinder head threads and spark plug threads are thoroughly clean. You should also make sure to set the correct gap on the new spark plug and install new gaskets. However, if you have tapered spark plug, you are not required to install a new gasket. Next, tighten the plug using your hand as tight as possible. Using a wrench, further tighten the plug to Volkswagen's torque specs, about 20 lb. -ft.
Finally, make sure that the spark plug cable is perfectly fitted into the plug terminal. Now that you have a brand new spark plug installed, you should regularly check it for maintenance.
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Growing up with three brothers, Natalie Anderson became exposed early to the world of automobiles. This 29-year-old account manager now dreams of having her very own top-of-the-line vintage car.