Simple Tips to Keep Your Chevrolet Spark Plug in Great Condition
To keep your engine running smoothly, the spark plugs must be in top condition at all times. If they are dirty, spark plugs can greatly contribute to your engine's problems and reduce performance. Normally, firing tips clogged with debris, oil, fuel, and carbon cause a dirty spark plug. You can regularly perform a cleaning task for your Chevrolet spark plug to keep them in great condition. Below are some pointers you can easily accomplish.
- Regularly inspect and clean the spark plug.
To ensure great working performance, spark plugs must be clean and free from debris always. You can use a wire brush and a spray-on cleaner to remove the residues on each spark plug. For other more stubborn deposits, use a sturdy knife to scrape them off. Refrain from using abrasive tools when cleaning the plug. In addition, use a spark plug gauge to inspect the gaps between the electrodes at the tip of the spark plug. Check for the specifications corresponding to your vehicle's model. Generally, the usual gap for small engine plugs is 0.03”. When a gap is too small, the result would be a weaker spark, leading to higher fuel consumption. If the gap is too big, it may cause misfiring or premature electrode deterioration.
- Use the appropriate cleaning liquids and chemicals.
After brushing off the dust and dirt from your Chevrolet spark plug, use an appropriate spray-on cleaner or a quick-drying fluid to clean the firing end of the plug. Generally, a good cleaning agent would consist of 90 percent strength alcohol, brake or carburetor, injector cleaner or mineral spirits. Alternatively, you can also soak the firing end in a toilet bowl cleaner, a muriatic acid, or hydrochloric acid for a few minutes. Make sure to wear protective gloves and rinse well. You may use a thin wire to dig out the slime.
- Promptly attend to any sign of malfunctioning.
Because spark plugs are important components that keep your vehicle running smoothly, any sign of malfunctioning must be given attention promptly to avoid further damaging other plugs, parts, as well as the system. Normally, a faulty Chevrolet spark plug will give some telling signs. When you begin to have problems starting your vehicle, this is an indication of a worn out plug that has to be replaced.
- Keep nearby components also in good condition.
To keep your plugs in good condition, you also have to maintain the surrounding components in top shape. If the valve guides or seals are worn or damaged, the oil can dribble down the valve stems and get into the combustion chamber. This will leave heavy black oily deposits on the spark plugs. Worn out and damaged piston rings, as well as engine cylinders can also foul the plugs. In addition, a defective fuel injector, oxygen sensor, and too much fuel pressure produces heavy black deposits, dry carbon fouling, and rich fuel mixture, which are all bad for the spark plugs. Another thing you have to watch out for is a leaky head gasket. A leaky head gasket spells bad news and is quite expensive to repair. Because of this, the coolant enters the combustion chamber and forms fouling residues on the spark plugs.