Changing spark plugs is a large part of a regular tune up, but did you know that you can perform this easy maintenance job yourself? A spark plug is basically a high voltage bridge that electric passes through. They are very cheap to buy and easy to install. It does not hurt to replace them each year; doing so can increase the efficiency of your engine and even help out with gas mileage a bit. This procedure is not difficult as long as you follow the directions. The tools you will need include a ratchet wrench, a 12 inch socket extension, and a plug socket for your vehicle.
Your plugs may be easily located if you follow the thick, black cables As a rule of thumb, 4 cylinder engines have their plugs at the top of the engine in a row, 8 cylinder engines have their spark plugs 4 on each side, and 6 cylinder engines can have them either way. S plugs are placed in a specific order, so it does matter in which order you place them and take them out. Starting at the end of the row, grab the spark plug as close to the engine as you can, and pull it out. If you grab them too far up you could damage the cord and have to replace it.
If you have not already done so, place the spark plug socket and extension on your ratchet. Inside of the plug socket, you should see black rubber or foam on the other end. This is useful because it holds the plug into place as you take it out of the engine. Set your ratchet to loosen, and place it over the end of the plug. You can now easily remove the plug. After you have removed each plug, it is a good idea to examine it. There should be a little grime and dirt on the end, but if you have too much it could be a sign of trouble.
When you buy plugs for your cars nowdays, they will usually come already gapped. This makes things a whole lot easier. In order to place the new sp plug in the hole, place the plug wire end of the plug into the socket. Now hold the extension and place it in as far as it will go. Be careful while doing so though, as you do not want to damage the plug. You can now screw in the new plug using just your hands. You will only be able to do this to a point though, and then you will have to use the wrench. Once it is in, you may put the wire back on.
Now once the first one is done, you just have to repeat the process with each of the remaining plugs. Do not worry; it gets easier each time you do it. If you dropped out all of the spark plugs at once, you will have a difficult time knowing which cable goes where and things will not go well if you place the wrong cables on the plugs.