What Does a Spark Plug Do [Why Are Spark Plugs So Important]

Have you ever wondered how does your vehicle’s engine work or from where it gets the power source? The power source is the spark plugs simply.

These miniature plugs provide electricity from one lead to another to produce the engine power. Hence, these are the components that keep your vehicle going smoothly.

What is a Spark plug: Spark plug definition

Spark plugs are small metallic devices that create electricity from the ignition of air/ fuel mixture in the chambers. That electricity creates an explosion that makes the engine produce power to run.

The spark plugs are situated within closed gaps, making the electricity flow more rapidly between them.

What is a spark plug-spark plug definition

Spark plugs cost-

Start from 4$

What happens when spark plugs go bad

When the spark goes bad, you will see some notable changes in your car’s performance. Though the changes won’t be too noticeable initially, as the bad spark plugs remain unnoticed, the issues worsen.

Some of the arising issues are acceleration slows down, the car starts to consume more fuel than usual, hard starts, engine misfiring and idling.

You will get encountered with some absurd ratting, coughing, or sneezing noises from the engine as well.

How does a spark plug work

Spark plugs are connected to an ignition coil that creates a high voltage. The voltage difference is made in the electrodes of the spark plugs as the coil produces electricity.

Hence the spark plugs get power. Afterward, the spark plugs ignite air/ fuel mixture through a spark in their combustion chamber to jump-start the engine.

Spark plug problems

Over time, as your car ages, its spark plugs also face some problems, which lead to the car’s underperformance.

Even if you maintain it well, the problems have to arise someday. Those are oil and carbon deposits on the electrodes and injector tips, which happen in the ignition—chalky, white-casted plugs caused due to overheating.

Brownish-tanned plugs are a result of obsolescence.

How long do spark plugs last

If you work for a life expectancy, spark plugs last from 1 year to a maximum of 2.5 years if you maintain them well.

A set of good quality spark plugs made of platinum or iridium will serve your engine up to 30,000 miles without replacement.

At the same time, an average copper or metal spark plug can support up to 20,000 miles.

What are the symptoms of bad spark plugs?

The symptoms of bad or dying spark plugs are quite obvious to determine.

Your vehicle’s overall performance will fall due to reduced gas mileage, excessive engine exhaustion, reduced acceleration, time-consuming to start the engine, rough engine idling, loud noises from there, and much more.

If these symptoms are overlooked from the beginning, spark plugs will die eventually.

Spark plug diagram

Spark plug diagram

Benefits of changing spark plugs

Spark plugs are changed either they got bad before time or their life expectancy is over. Whatever the cause is, replacing them with brand new sets of spark plugs will make your car journeys more prominent, smooth, and trouble-free.

Hence, the engine works at its best with those issueless spark plugs, keeping the car going with its full power.

When does the spark for ignition occur

The spark for ignition occurs when the high voltage ignition coil produces electricity into the spark plugs’ center and the ground electrode.

Hence, the spark is created to ignite the air/ fuel mixture in the combustion chambers to power the engine.

What are the symptoms of bad spark plugs?

There are lots of ways to tell if your spark plug isn’t working properly. Click here to know detailed symptoms of a bad spark plug.

What causes a spark plug to turn black

How often should you change spark plugs?

Simply, change them when their life expectancy overs. The spark plugs’ life expectancy of your vehicle is mentioned in your car’s maintenance booklet, so adjust them accordingly.

At most, replace them within every 2-3 years depending on how often you use your car.

However, if the spark plugs get bad in between the expected changing time, you should also change them, or else it will affect your vehicle’s performance.

What does a good burning spark plug look like

What happens if you don’t change the spark plug?

A worn-out or bad spark plug cannot function properly. It cannot properly ignite the air/ fuel mixture to create the combustion, so the fuel utilization remains incomplete. As a result, your vehicle will lose more fuel without serving the required mileage, and acceleration will hamper, the engine won’t start in one go, and whatnot! After seeing all these, even if you don’t change them, the engine will stop working.

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