Spark plugs provide the necessary electricity to ignite the air and fuel mixture in your car’s engine. This combustion creates the energy to start your engine and power the pistons. Without healthy spark plugs, you may experience a decrease in performance and fuel economy. The number of spark plugs within your engine will depend on what cylinder engine you have. For example, a four-cylinder engine has four spark plugs, and a six-cylinder engine has six spark plugs.
Read on to learn the timeframe for when to replace spark plugs, what can happen if you don’t, and signs they need to be replaced.
How Often Should Spark Plugs Be Replaced?
To determine how often you should replace spark plugs, look in your vehicle’s owner’s manual for a recommended replacement interval. A general estimate is that you should change your spark plugs every 30,000 miles, but factors like the engine, driving conditions, and spark plug type will impact this recommendation. Modern vehicles may suggest changing your spark plugs every 50,000 – 100,000 miles since ignition technology has advanced. Look in your manufacturer’s guide for an accurate interval recommendation for your vehicle model.
Failure to replace spark plugs as needed can cause engine problems, such as idling, lack of acceleration, and misfiring. You may also experience a decrease in fuel economy due to bad spark plugs.
How To Tell If A Spark Plug Is Bad
While they don’t need to be replaced often, spark plugs play a crucial role in starting your vehicle. You wouldn’t get very far without them. Here are some common signs that you have a bad spark plug.
Check engine light is on.
Engine idles roughly and loudly
- Pinging, rattling or knocking noises
- Vehicle takes a few tries to start
- Poor acceleration
- Decreased miles per gallon
Schedule a Spark Plug Replacement Service with McCullough NAPA
Schedule an appointment with McCullough NAPA Car Care if you notice any signs of a bad spark plug above or want to talk about increasing your engine performance. Our technicians are ASE Certified and equipped to answer any questions about spark plugs, your engine, or any other area of your vehicle.