The Best Spark Plugs in the World and Why
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The Best Spark Plugs in the World and Why

August 18, 2019


rev up your engines, today I’m going to
talk about the best spark plugs for your car’s engine and why they are the best
ones, now over the past hundred something years spark plugs do one basic thing in
a gasoline engine, they fire the air and fuel mixture so there’s an explosion
that pushed the pistons down, now the early spark plugs hey they didn’t fire
all that great, the really early ones you could actually take them apart into
different pieces, clean them and fix them, put them back together and use them over, and
after that for decades and decades most spark plugs had copper electrodes in them,
copper is a good of conductor of electricity so they would conduct the
electricity that would make the spark that would fire the gasoline air mixture, but if you
know anything about copper hey it may conduct electricity quite well but it’s
extremely soft, so what happens is it would wear out in a reasonably short
period of time, back in a day when I was a young mechanic, hey you’d be lucky if
you got twenty thousand miles out of a set of spark plugs, sometimes we had to
change them even closer if it was an engine that was worn and burned some oil,
so they didn’t last all that long, then they went to platinum spark plug, because
platinum hey it’s much harder, it keeps its sharper edge long and where the
spark plugs fire you want a sharp edge for the spark to fire correctly, Platinum
spark plugs can easily last a hundred thousand miles and another
advantage of the Platinum spark plugs is they generally run a little bit hotter
than the copper plugs do, it’s running hotter they burn the deposits that get
on your spark plug off better so the spark plugs can last a lot longer, even
if your sparks firing right if it gets clogged up with unburned carbon parts it
won’t fire right, but then came Iridium spark plugs the top-line ones now,
iridium is six times harder than platinum, so it lasts even longer, plus it
has a 700 degree hotter melting point than the Platinum does, so they can last
an awful long time these Iridium spark plugs,
I personally have seen some Chevy v8 engines that had two hundred thousand miles on
them and the Iridium plugs had never been changed and it still ran fine, now
of course the iridium once cost more but hey the price keeps coming down, now you can
easily get them for seven or eight dollars a piece and there’s a big reason
that many engines now use iridium plugs from the factory, and that’s because
they’re making spark plugs harder and harder to get to, as an example this
Lexus behind me is a v6, the front three cylinders are real easy to get to,
they’re out in the open the front three simple to get to, but the back three are
under the intake manifold and you have to take the intake manifold plenum
completely off to get to those three smart plugs, it is a gigantic job, and
there’s many modern engine designs that are even worse than that,
some of them you practically have to pull the engine out of the car to change all the
spark plugs, so iridium makes sense if you can get two hundred thousand miles
out of a set of spark plugs hey most people are gonna be happy with that,
now the copper then the platinum then the Iridium, those are the three main
plugs that go into cars, but there are a bunch of these wild and crazy
manufacturers that design plugs that have four electrodes or are made all even
different materials and they claim they boost your horsepower and make you a
better gas mileage well, stay away from that stuff it’s just nonsense, now ages
and ages ago a spark plug design could have made a change like in the 60s where
you had points and condensers just mechanically opening and closing and
firing the spark plugs through the distributor, a lot of those systems
didn’t have all that much power and if you replace the stock spark plug in those
with one that fired better they would have actually run better, but it spent
decades and decades since theirs been points and condensers, all the systems are
electronically controlled now, the stock spark plug that comes with the car is
what’s designed for the car and will generally work best,
again in this 94 Celica hey it’s got electronic ignition in it, the stock
Nippon Denso was the best plug for it, it was designed by engineers it’s the right
fit and speaking of the right fit, let me tell you a horror story, years ago I had
a customer come over here with a 300 Z nissan sports car, and it
clacking like mad and I said, well when did this start and the guy said, well I
changed my spark plugs and right after I changed the sparks it just started
making all that noise, so I said okay let’s stop right there, I pulled out one
of the spark plugs, I looked at the spark plug and I could see the top of the
spark plug was hitting something it had metal shiny parts on it where it was
wearing, well nothing’s supposed to touch the top of the spark plug in the engine,
I went to my auto parts store and got a set of six spark plugs, and I measured
them against the spark plug that I’d taken out, well it turned out that the
spark plugs he installed were like this much higher instead of fitting flush like
this they stuck in the engine this much higher, and it was actually hitting the
top of the Pistons, it turns out he used a discount auto parts store and the
software that they had strangely enough was typed up in South Korea who knows
these days what kind of technology goes on, and one of those guys made a mistake
and they said that these long spark plugs belonged in his car that had
shorter spark plugs, they sold him the wrong ones, now he was extremely lucky
because he did it fast and brought it to me and I put in the right ones and after
about a day of driving the noise went away, so it didn’t really seem to have
damaged it in the long run even though that noise was pretty rattling to his
peace of mind when he started it up and heard it, so really you can’t beat the
stock spark plugs, always try to get the same exact spark plug the car came with,
and don’t trust anybody take one of your old ones out and when you take it out you
can either match the number this has a big number on it, or at least when they
sell it to you match it up to make sure it’s the same size and that’s exactly
the same length of threads as your old one, because you don’t want one that’s
too deep that’s gonna hit the pistons or one that’s too shallow and it won’t fire
the flame correctly, engineer spent years refining engine designs,
refining the spark plugs that go in them your going against all that knowledge if
you decide to swap out to a different spark plug, it has to be the right size
and it has to be the correct heat range for normal driving, but that said there
is one exception, you had a car that say came with a
Platinum sparkplug or a copper sparkplug you could upgrade to an Iridium spark
plug if an Iridium spark plug is made that will fit in there, you’re not gonna
get more horsepower, you’re not gonna get better gas mileage, but you’re gonna get
longer life, like in that Lexus it didn’t come with iridium plugs but I put them
in, because it was such a pain to take that manifold off I put in Iridium spark
plugs, now I have to admit the platinum spark plugs and I took out of it had
nothing wrong with them, I had to take off the valve cover gasket on that side
because even though it was a Lexus things wear out eventually and it was 16 years
old and this stupid little rubber gasket on the valve cover was leaking oil, I
figured as long as I’m taking that manifold off so I could change the valve
cover gasket I”m going to change the spark plugs too, if they make an Iridium spark
plug that will fit in your engine when you go to an auto parts store and they
look up and you match it with the old one that’s the same size, go right ahead
and put an Iridium version of the original spark plug, but don’t think that
there’s some magic spark plug out there that’s gonna make your car run better by
some crazy design that somebody thinks is going to work inside an engine better
than what the engineers designed it for and since this is mechanic Monday I’m
giving away a set of original equipment spark plugs, to have a chance to
win just place a clean non offensive comment on the youtube comments below
and the winner will be chosen randomly by a computer to get brand spankin new
original equipment spark plugs for their car’s engine, so if you never want to
miss another one of my new car repair videos, remember to ring that Bell!

Only registered users can comment.

  1. Great video Scotty! I used to work at autozone and half the time my coworkers had no clue about spark plugs so they would just recommend the most expensive ones and then customers come back pissed off finding out their cars run worse than their used set of plugs😅😅

  2. Hey Scotty, love your channel! How long did it take to change your lexus Spark plugs and how much should that cost to get done?

  3. That story about the wrong plugs happened to me also. I went to Pep Boys to get some plugs for a Suzuki Swift. They gave me longer ones that damaged the engine. They accepted the responsibility and gave me the parts needed to fix it. I didnt keep the car. Basically gave it away after that.

  4. I just changed my iridium plugs at 193k. They did have iridium on both sides of the plug so they had not worn much. The new plugs didn't improve the MPG but I was already getting about 40mpg hwy

  5. They didnt have my ac delco plugs in stock so I mail ordered them . Those plug changes save the ignition coils. cap & rotor too with Full synthetic oil and you have a motor that runs like sewing machine.

  6. Hey bro doing a radiator on an 05 Dakota, should I pull the fan clutch and go to electric??? thanks for all the solid vids

  7. As a licence dealership mechanic, the one big concern I've come across with high mileage spark plugs is that the threads of the plug and cylinder head can seize up and strip the threads on removal. Especially aluminum head engines. Some engines were worse than others. I recommended to customers with those engines to at least remove, clean the threads of the spark plugs with carbon cleaner and reinstall them before the suggested replacement mileage. It also gave me the opportunity to inspect the plug for proper air/fuel burning, possible oil burning and on some occasions small coolant leaks into the cylinders.
    Cheers,

  8. There are way too many variables. These general ideas are just that… general. For example, if you upped your boost pressure, you WANT recessed spark plugs. Not everything is "OEM", and sometimes OEM work better or worse in the engine depending on WHEN the engine was made, and tuned, since Iridiums WILL increase the voltage capability of the spark. None of what was said is set in stone.

  9. AC Delco no longer makes their own sparks….they now have NGK make their spark plugs for them….if you don't want to pay more for the a.c. Delco plugs just ask your part store to cross reference the same plug in ngk brand and it will save you 2-3 dollars per plug ….and it's the exact same plug one just says acdelco and the other NGK but there is a considerable price difference….if you don't believe that NGK makes spark plugs for AC Delco ….google it…..its true!

  10. 99-07 gm vortec V6 and V8 owners listen up! GM's original manufacturer plugs were ALL built with iridium plugs installed. They eventually changed that OEM spec to platinum plugs. So whenever you go to a parts store or look online for new plugs it will automatically default you to platinum plugs as being OEM. THEY ARE NOT! GM changed the spec because people were getting wayyyyy too many miles out of their original iridium spark plugs so they switched it to platinum so people would have to buy plugs more often. So keep in mind the next time any of you fellow vortec owners are shopping for a set of spark plug, deny the the platinums and demand iridium plugs! I replaced my plugs and wires a couple months ago (6.0L Vortec) @ about 134,000 miles and it still had the original plugs in it and only one plug was showing any significant signs of wear. Iridiums or nothing!

  11. Im not into cars but this guy is hilarious and im into him as a person. Been binge watching his channel for 4 hrs now

  12. I'll use motercraft or champion do well inline 6 300 Ford's just have that old ways very nice on spark talk what's best for Ford engine

  13. Hey Scotty, great info! I have a 69 mustang Mach 1 that came with a copper spark plug. Someone suggested to change it to platinum because it burns hotter. Do you think it’s a good idea?

  14. I don't understand why people try to save a few bucks on a machine that costs thousands of dollars…

    Spend the money on proper parts, my friends. If you drive your car to work then you need your car to be in good condition to make that money!

    Problem with a lot of auto part stores is that they typically sell you the cheapest crap you can get.

  15. I just bought a toyota sprinter 1996 with a 5a fe t because my old car tercel 1997 was burning too much oil its not a race car but i gives great gasmileage iam thinking about changing the plugs with iridum ones

  16. Anyone remember the non fouling tips u screwed on to the end of the sparkplug that kept the plug from fouling out due to oil build up?i had an old oil slinger that had a few of em in it.they really worked.

  17. Great vid…
    I tried all 3 plug types, and have found iridium is tops considering the longevity on my 'o4 Ram 1500 Hemi…..pricey, but worth it. Looking forward to 300k…

  18. Scotty, anti-seize or no? I've always put a dab of it on all my plugs without any issues but these days they recommend not to use it.

  19. Hi, I have a problem with my Camry hybrid 2009 the car, change the hybrid system's pomp, the car follows me overheating the hybrid system that you recommend thanks you

  20. The dealer repair shop wants to replace my plugs (80,000+ mi.) on the next visit. My 2005, E-150 Ford van may have plugs that stick (galling), but the shop has a special tool that may get them out–for hundreds of dollars.  I got a second opinion at an independent shop where I was informed to not change out the plugs.

  21. My car struggles every morning to turn on. After I drive it, it turns on right away. But if it’s turned off for a while it struggles to turn on all over again. Can this be because of the spark plugs?

  22. Hi Scotty,

    Yes.
    I made that mistake with Champions. Just a poor excuse for a plug; they very quickly failed.

    I switched to Chevy ZR1 iridium plugs. 300K ago. My Silverado has 400 k. And you are right ! It runs as smooth as the day I put them in. Which is advanced alien technology for me. Just amazing.

    However, the truck is disintegrating around the 5.3 motor though. Been a great truck.

    Thanks for the videos, really enjoy them. Sometimes you make me belly laugh so hard !

    I also miss the pillow cat with the cigarette. Only saw it once; hope it returns. I'll put down a pack of Camels without filters for it.

    Rock On Scotty!

  23. THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR GREAT ADVICE. I regret buying a awd Cadillac ext after watching your videos. But at least i know.

  24. Hey Scotty my 2001 Honda Civic 1.7 is having issues with power loss while driving down the interstate it drops out but if I smash the gas pedal it will jerk and pick back up. I’ve been told it doesn’t have a serviceable fuel filter. It’s got a check engine light on with a code for Vtec solenoid and low bank two. I’ve replaced solenoid and tps. Please help I’m at my ends with this problem. Thanks in advance!

  25. I have replaced spark plugs on plenty of cars that you had to remove the intake that Lexus intake is not a big job and is considered gravy work by any real mechanic

  26. Thank you made it easy for me to pick the right spark plug for my ride. Simple and effective teaching style, Scotty.

  27. I got some spark plugs from The Dollar Store
    They were made with Unobtanium, last a million miles it says.
    Are these good for my Hyundai Excel?

  28. i changed my spark plugs to iridium when i bought the car. now ngk came up with these Ruthenium ones. I wonder if they worth the hassle to change

  29. Scotty, the only thing you could have touched on more was heat ranges and explain how that relates to motor changes like adding nitrous. Of course the large majority of people are not doing this, but it's still valuable information. It was a great video, otherwise.

  30. Great video, I need to change my plugs in my 2004 Ford Ranger 4.0 L I will look to see if Iridium is available for my truck. I love your other videos as well, your way of explaining and energy, sure keeps the viewers attention. Well done keep them coming.

  31. Had a 71 Challenger with a 440 magnum. Ran champion plugs in it. We had a spark plug cleaner, worked like a mini sandblaster. Oh the good ole days lol.

  32. Hey Scotty- What about the dielectric constant of the ceramic insulator? Cheap plugs can leak voltage right through the insulator and cause performance issues…

  33. I have a 98 chevy 1500, 305, just hit 134000, had it for 21 years. I use ac delco, recommended by the factory. I've changed them twice. Kind of like a customer had a water pump replaced in his 2014 Mitsubishi eclipse and it went out in less than a year. This time he had me replace it, I replaced it with a new one. Less than a year it went out again. I did some research, and found out that you have the OEM pump. I did that, along with new timing and balance belt, all is well its been over 3 years now.

  34. Its funny cuz today i cleaned mine and put it back in.. Its a Champions brand and I did it cuz Oreallys gave me 5yr warranty and its been like 6 yrs so i think it can take more heat haha

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