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Question about Spark Plug Wear

This is a discussion on Question about Spark Plug Wear within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Folks, Just curious I changed the plugs on my DD (2004 Saturn ION3). The plugs it calls for are AC ...

  1. #1
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    Question about Spark Plug Wear

    Folks,

    Just curious I changed the plugs on my DD (2004 Saturn ION3). The plugs it calls for are AC Delco Iridium's 41-105.

    They are supposed 100k plugs when. I pulled them out at 40k. And all four looked like the following pictures.2012-08-27 21.56.51.jpg

    Other than the brown area around the porcelain, the plugs looked great. The only reason, I changed them was when I would put the AC on the car would bog down for a second until the compressor was up and running.

    Since replacing them all is fine.

    Just curious anyones thoughts, I would never leave a plug in for 100k, but I'm sure some do....

  2. #2
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    Well bro its hard for me to see very well on my phone, but the electrode and ground strap look good to me. You want I nice somewhat even tan color on the ground strap. Pretty sure the brown ring around the porcelin is normal. Im sure new plugs perform better than 60k mile plugs regardless of how they are rated. You may have a different underlying issue. I would go get your charging system checked out at your local part store. If an accessory kicking on causes bogging could be an alternator issue. They usually check the system running, then under a load ie. AC, headlights. Might help.

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    Yeah I had the car in the shop for the AC and the beginning of my problem was overcharging the AC, but regardless I had a leaking o-ring and oiled the compressor and with the new plugs its ruining pretty good. The car has 116k so a weakened alternator is totally possible, but I guess I'll drive it until the alternator dies....

    Anyway I emailed AC Delco about the burn on the porcelain and they pretty much refused to answer my question saying that I need to speak to a Saturn service center about the plugs...that is unacceptable to me, I'm going to call AC Delco tomorrow to see if I can get anyone with a brain to talk to. I work in the electric industry where I live and my experience with porcelain insulators if that the browning is a beginning sign of failure....Pretty much I just want to get some info on the plugs because most people would look at both ends and see that they look ok and put them back in, not realizing they had an issue on their hands...

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    Former Mopar Man 2002ssslp's Avatar
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    Did you check the gap on the old plugs. If so, what did they read ?
    My ride is a 2002 Camaro SS SLP #3296 with 30k, LTH, 3" Y, CME, Frost tune, K&N, ported TB, Blackwing lid, Bellows, MSD, Denso Iridium, and 85mm MAF, Bilsteins, Eibach springs, SLP strut brace, Adj. Panhard, TA Girdle, UMI, Pro 5.0, Nitto NT555
    My wife has a 2004 GTO with the rare SAP, 18" wheels, K&N Cold Air System, MSD, Ported TB, Frost tune, Denso Iridium, Flowmaster cat-back, 3200 Yank, 75k

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    Yeah when I pulled them they were all about .040. My Chilton / Haynes said to gap them to .045.

    The plugs I pulled were actually put in by a Satun Dealer so I was suprised when the none of them gapped to .045, but then again the aftermarket manuals could be bad.

    The new plugs I put in, I gapped to .045. I guess I'll check them in a few thousand and see how they look.

  6. #6
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    Plug looks ok to me as well. Is that car a coil on plug setup or does it run regular ignition wires? Cheap insurance is to put a dab of dielectric grease in each plug boot before snapping it on -- will aid in future removal and help seal out moisture.

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    It's coil on plug setup, yeah I slathered the electrode and the rubber boot with plent of of di-electric grease, so hopefully I won't have a problem with the plugs.

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    Senior Member Too Fast's Avatar
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    That looks like a perfectly normal used spark plug to me. I've changed many that had a lot worse browning along the ceramic where it meets the metal hex, never thought about it much. Could be combustion gases ever so slightly seeping thru causing the discoloration. Really, tho, nothing to be concerned about, unless you want to come up with a better spark design. I've seen this on different manufacturers plugs, so it's definitely not a Delco thing.

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