How to Effectively Maintain the Spark Plugs in an Audi
Posted on March 6, 2022 by Carson Wileman
Spark plugs are small but crucial engine components that receive high voltage electricity and generate the spark that helps the engine run. They are a maintenance item on every vehicle for a variety of reasons, and they should be replaced at the manufacturer’s recommended intervals before they fail.
Spark plugs become contaminated and clogged over time primarily by carbon buildup, but sometimes by oil or fuel if an engine is not running well. The electrodes can potentially wear out or the distance between them can widen. Age and heat can cause the insulation section of the spark plug to break, resulting in misfires. Additionally, fluid leaks from the top of the engine can pollute the spark plugs.
Checking and Changing Spark Plugs
While spark plugs are extremely robust and can resist harsh temperatures and conditions for thousands of miles, they must be checked regularly to ensure that they continue to function properly. Pre-ignition occurs when a spark plug fires too quickly. Premature wear can be caused by everyday wear and tear. Therefore, it is important to know how to inspect their health and performance.
Tips to Keeping Your Spark Plug Performing
- Clean around the area before removing the old spark plug: You can utilize a dust blower canister to remove any dirt that is around the spark plugs before replacing the old with the new. Dirt cannot enter the cylinder bore because it will cut the wall and wear out the rings. A washer-style gasket is necessary if the spark plug does not have a tapered seat. The tiny side of the gasket should face the cylinder head when installing it. The reach is the length of the threaded region that properly puts the electrode in the cylinder bore.
- Take a look at the new plug before you put it in: Check the new spark plug for any damage from prior drops. It is important to ensure that the electrodes are aligned with each other. If not, use pliers to carefully realign the electrodes. You will need to determine the optimum electrode gap next. Use a gauge to ensure everything is in place. When checking, make sure the gauge is straight. The spark plug is of the wrong design or the specification is inaccurate if the side electrode needs to be tilted up or down significantly to achieve the necessary gap.
- Spray the cavity: Spray the cavity around the center electrode with carburettor cleaner while the plug is facing downward to allow any material to fall out. This will eliminate any dust or debris from the manufacturing process that could cause the engine to misfire, especially while the machine is under stress.
- Utilize an anti-seize compound: If the cylinder head is made of aluminum or if the equipment is not kept in a facility, you need to use an anti-seize compound. This will make it easier to remove the plug in the future by maintaining the threads. Keep a safe distance between the electrodes and the anti-seize substance. If it gets on the electrode, wipe it clean with a clean towel dipped in carburettor cleaning.
- Coat with Dielectric Compound: This substance protects the boots from corrosion and keeps them from clinging to the insulator, which might cause wires to break in the future. Each plug should be threaded in by hand and then tightened using the appropriate socket and tool. To sustain heat transfer and keep the bore sealed, the plug must be tight against the cylinder head. When removing or installing a spark plug, never use air tools.
Keith Cox Autobahn Will Help You
At Keith Cox Autobahn, we believe that maintaining a good quality vehicle is better and more cost-effective in the long run than simply purchasing a new one. Vehicles are designed to last hundreds of thousands of miles if properly maintained and we take pride in keeping them on the road.
Located on Ellis Street, Bellingham, WA, our certified mechanics are constantly learning new ways to keep to our word and serve your vehicle effectively. Feel free to give us a call at (360)-733-2721 or come in to set up an appointment for any necessary maintenance repairs.