The spark plug is a part of the car’s ignition system. You have to change the spark plug if it gets faulty. And this is when the plug might even break and leave a part in the cylinder hole. So, you’ve got to know how to get the spark plug out of a hole if you want to replace the spark plug by yourself.
To get it done, you’ve got to find the broken thread first in the hole using a flashlight. Then, use an easy-out extractor to remove the threads. Blow the area with an air compressor, and install the new plug with a torque wrench.
However, there’re several factors to keep in mind for getting the spark plug out of the cylinder hole. You might even damage the piston while using the extractor if you’re not careful.
I’ve discussed everything you need to know to complete the task in this guide, including when you need to replace the spark plug.
How to Get Spark Plug Out of Hole
Now that it’s time to get the spark plug out, make sure you know the proper steps and have everything you need to get it out.
- Penetrating oil
- Anti-seize Easy out extractor
- Hand drill Ratchet
- Breaker Bar Pliers Torque wrench
Steps to Follow:
1. Find the Problem:
Using a flashlight, try to find the problem first. You may find a portion of the plug on the head of the cylinder. Now, you need to make a hole first to get it out. Try doing it with a hand drill. But, make sure that you don’t cause any damage to the piston.
2. Use the Easy Out Extractor:
Put some penetrating oil in the plug, and leave it there for a couple of minutes. In the hole, insert the easy out and tap it using a hammer. Don’t tap on it too hard as it might break. If it does, you’ll have another tool stuck in the hole and run to a mechanic.
3. Get the Spark Plug Out:
Take a wrench and attach it to the extractor. Now, try turning it in the direction of anti-clockwise. When you’ve had some turns, the extractor will stop turning and stick to the plug. You can use a breaker bar if it’s hard to use only a wrench.
The breaker bar will give you a better grip and control. If you’ve done everything properly, the spark plug thread will come out after you turn it with the extractor.
Now, just clean the area by blowing it and installing a new spark plug. But, if you’ve broken the thread while turning to get it out, there’s more you need to do.
4. Thread the Plug Hole Again
Take an air compressor, and clean the hole by blowing some air into it before you thread it again. Then, thread the hole with a few taps. Put some penetrating oil and few more taps to thread the spark plug.
5. Install the New Spark Plug
Now, clean the hole once more, and use the anti-seize to thread the new spark plug. Take a torque wrench, and install the new spark plug into the hole. Put the ignition coil back to its place and start the engine.
When Should You Replace Your Spark Plug?
As mentioned earlier, the rule of thumb is to replace your spark plug after every 30 to 90 thousand miles. But, you also should change your spark plug if you face the following issues:
1. Trouble in Starting the Car
The spark plug is the initial component that starts your car. It creates a spark that ignites the fuel. If the plug has worn out, it won’t create the spark promptly as needed. As a result, you’ll face trouble starting the car. This is when you should have a look at the plug and replace it if needed.
2. Check Engine Light is On
The Check Engine light in your car can turn on if there’s an issue with your car’s engine. If you had a closer look at your engine but found no issue, try replacing the spark plug. It may look alright but could have gone faulty, which caused the Check Engine light to turn on.
3. Unusual Sound in Your Engine
Each car’s engine has a unique sound. If you’ve driven your car for a while, you’ll get used to the sound it makes. It might be because of a faulty spark plug if you find your engine making an unusual rattling sound.
4. Less Fuel Efficiency
If you’re getting less fuel efficiency and there’s nothing wrong with your engine, then you can try changing the spark plug. Your engine will consume more fuel than usual if it’s faulty.
5. Problem in Acceleration
Your car will move faster whenever you press the accelerator. But, if you find it taking more time than usual to respond to acceleration, there might be an issue with the spark plug.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do I need to clean my spark plugs?
If you’ve got an old car, then it’s part of your regular car maintenance to clean the spark plugs. However, cars with modern technology don’t require their spark plugs to be cleaned. You can just replace them once they wear out.
2. Should I replace the spark wires along with the spark plugs?
Yes, it’s always recommended to replace the spark wires as well along with the spark plugs. Old wires tend to wear out or break at some point if you don’t replace them.
3. Should I change one spark plug at a time or the whole set?
It’s highly recommended to replace the whole set at once. If you change only one or two, there’s a high chance that it won’t be compatible with the other ones.
4. How much would it cost to replace the spark plug?
Typical spark plugs will cost $6-$10 each. Plugs made with iridium or platinum will cost $15-$40 each as they’re more durable and efficient. If you go to a shop to change the plugs, the labor fee will range around $50-$120.
But, changing the spark plugs is a quite simple process. So, you can do it yourself if you’re familiar with your way around the engine.
Worn-out or faulty spark plugs will eventually cause your car to perform poorly. And if you’ve got any broken parts while trying to remove it, knowing how to get spark plug out of hole would come in handy.
It’s important to get the right tools and get yourself familiar with the engine. If you’re confident enough, it’s best to go to a professional. You might end up causing more trouble in your car, which would cost much more than just replacing spark plugs.
Robert Anderson is a world class motorhead who rebuilt his first carb at age 10, his first engine at age 15, and completed his first full hotrod build when he was just 18! Previously, he has ran a part warehouse, delivered pizzas, and managed the service department for a $20 million/year revenue dealership. Robert knows cars like few others and he is passionate about sharing his knowledge.