Car maintenance is full of small reminders. There always seems to be something to be concerned about underneath the hood. Mechanics will warn of the need to check on the battery, change the oil, make sure the transmission fluid is not cloudy, and a lot of other little things. Spark plugs are part of the engine that need to be maintained and changed when necessary. Car owners have to appreciate that this is more than just another nagging little poke in the ribs. Spark plugs are extremely important.
It can be very understandable why car owners will ignore the spark plugs. They are intentionally manufactured to be very durable. Manufacturers are noting that spark plugs don’t need maintenance until 30,000 and up to 100,000 miles have been driven (the latter figure is recommended for the specifically manufactured long life spark plugs). The longevity, however, assumes in normal circumstances and there are many times when problems emerge that have to be dealt with. Spark plugs will age and as time goes by, the sharp edges wear down, and more voltage is required to bridge the gaps between the center and ground electrodes. An automobile is rarely silent about its problems. There are warning signals that let the owner know the spark plugs are starting to lose their effectiveness. Consistent trouble in starting the car is not necessarily a problem with the battery. The spark plugs might not be generating sufficient spark or they are draining the battery. The engine communicates loud and clear about difficulty with the spark plugs. Engine misfiring, in which the engine halts for a moment and then continues on as if nothing happened, is one sign of trouble. Engine surging is a signal that this heart of the automobile is having combustion problems, and spark plugs are part of that difficulty. A lack of acceleration is also a danger signal. All of these are showing a difficulty with not enough energy to have engine work properly.
Changing the spark plugs is a way of assuring top efficiency and performance. The misfires that may occur will increase exhaust emission as well as harm gas mileage. The warning lights that may be seen on the dashboard regarding spark plugs is a sign that misfires are exceeding a given amount and has caused emissions to dramatically increase. New spark plugs will decrease the number of cold starts that may happen in the winter. Less voltage is required in the ignition system because of the efficiency of the new spark plugs. Emissions have already been mentioned, but misfiring spark plugs can result in too much gasoline entering into the exhaust system. This can create higher temperatures in the catalytic converter, and may in fact lead to a meltdown of converter parts.
All of this points to a cautionary note for every car owner. This there may be lifelong spark plugs in the car, but problem still can happen that may result in spark plugs becoming increasing more defective. That does have a negative impact on the engine and other parts of the car. It is therefore is very important for a car owner to heed the warning signals of possible spark plug problems. Anyone who has purchased a used car ought to find out when the spark plugs were last changed. That can help determine when they need to be changed, assuming that the life of the once new spark plugs has already been decreased by tens of thousands of miles.
The manufacturer’s guide is the best to check regarding spark plugs and when they need to be serviced. The various models of cars have different spark plugs, and the manufacturer’s guide targets the brand that the driver happens to be using. It is also a good idea to develop a relationship with a particular automotive repair center. They can keep records on when the last time spark plugs were checked, and because the mechanics have worked on the given car before there’s better knowledge about the inner workings.
Worn-out spark plugs can still carry on for long periods of time. The big problem is that as they slowly deteriorate the ignition and engine start to appreciably suffer. Cars don’t really want to have cold starts in the wintertime, and bad spark plugs will put a serious drain on the battery. That can be an additional expense and new batteries are not cheap. Determining when the spark plugs need to be replaced is sensible car maintenance and will assure easy starts and proper acceleration of the automobile.