A spark plug is what its name describes it. It ignites the air and fuel mixture in the combustion engine by producing a strong and instantaneous electrical spark. Even minor problems with the spark plug can cause a car to stall or to breakdown entirely, in the middle of the road. So, for convenience and safety purposes, it is important to take preemptive troubleshooting steps to keep the spark plug in your vehicle in good working condition. Read on.
The color of the plug will indicate the condition and the problem of the part. To take a good view, it would be best to remove the spark plug from the engine and inspect it thoroughly. A brown to grayish tan color indicates slight electrode wear that is completely normal for spark plugs that went through considerable mileage. A rust yellow color indicates a faulty firing end that can cause hard starting in cold temperatures. Excessive amounts of dust deposits in light brown color masks the spark of the plug, hence, causes engine misfires and hesitation when accelerating.
Dry soot indicates weak ignition, and that the spark plug cannot handle the heat range a vehicle requires. The only way to solve this problem is to change the spark plug assembly entirely. Meanwhile, a spark plug coated with oil indicates worn piston rings; change the rings linking the plug to the combustion chamber, and you should be good to go. Lastly, ash deposits encrusted on the side of the electrodes are derived from oil and fuel additives, installing a new valve guide seal will prevent oil leaks into the combustion chambers. If this doesn't solve the problem, try changing your choice of petrol.
If the electrodes seem to be melting-this can also be spotted if you find white deposits covering the insulators-change the spark plug immediately. This will cause debris to fly around in the combustion chamber. Failing to do so will lead to engine damage.