Rick's Free Auto Repair Advice

Posts Tagged: Spark plug condition

Spark plug condition — How to read a spark plug

Spark plug condition Every day on auto forums I see people post a picture of their spark plug and ask, “How’s my spark plug? Should I put it back in?” If drives me crazy for two reasons; first, their pictures are so bad you can’t even see the center and side electrode condition and that’s what determines whether you can reinstall it, and second, spark plug color only tells you how the engine has been running up to this point. It tells you nothing about how it will run in … Read More

Spark plug condition and cold weather starting

Spark plug condition plays a critical role in cold weather starting Spark plugs that work perfectly fine in 70°F may fail in extremely cold weather. Here’s why. It’s harder to generate a spark in extremely cold weather When the magnetic field of the ignition coil collapses, it sends approximately 40,000 volts down the center electrode towards the spark plug gap. The voltage seeks ground and the only way to get there is to jump the gap between the center and side electrodes. Standing in the way? A compressed air/fuel mixture … Read More


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