7 Signs that your spark plugs need a replacement

Spark plugs are essential parts of a vehicle's engine. They create the electricity that ignites the air-fuel mixture in the combustion engine, which starts your car. Spark plugs set the engine's pistons in motion and continue to provide power to keep your car moving down the road. If you need to remember to take your vehicle in for regular tune-ups, it may begin to present the signs that it needs some attention and auto care. So what happens when spark plugs go wrong? Let's find out!

Spark Plug

When to change your spark plugs? 7 Signs to never overlook!

Here are seven signs and symptoms that let you know it's time to replace the spark plugs on your new or used car.

The car is hard to start

The battery may not be at fault if your car isn't starting. If it works correctly, spark plugs can create enough spark to turn the engine over. However, worn or clogged spark plugs need more electricity to operate effectively. That's why we recommend changing your spark plugs when you have a problem starting your car up or have trouble driving it on cold mornings. In such a case, you should seek the help of a good car mechanic in Melbourne for the rescue. 

The car engine misfires 

If your vehicle is misfiring, there may be other reasons why. However, an engine misfire is often the result of one or more worn spark plugs. You'll notice the engine loses pace and then catches back up, only to miss once again. As it loses and regains timing, it sends raw fuel into the exhaust system, damaging the catalytic converter.

The engine idling is rough and loud

If you notice knocking or rattling noises from your engine, it's time to check the spark plugs. Worn-out spark plugs can lead to a noisy car even when the vehicle is not in motion. When sparks fail, so does the ability to combust air and fuel efficiency. While there is little performance loss with older spark plugs, it increases fuel consumption and wears on your engine.

You're visiting the gas station too often

Loose or worn spark plugs reduce the effectiveness of your engine, resulting in drastic performance declines that impact your wallet and your car. You'll need to shell out more money on fuel and may even feel the sluggish acceleration. Replacing your spark plugs will restore their functionality, making it a less frustrating early warning sign of bad spark plugs.

When the car struggles to accelerate

Most people only realize their spark plugs are worn out once they experience slower acceleration and poor fuel economy. Exhaust smoke may also become noticeable, and your engine's engine may run rough or rattle. Spark plug manufacturers generally recommend that you replace your spark plugs every 30,000 miles or sooner if there are symptoms of wear.

The "check engine" light is on

Check engine lights are a preemptive warning telling you it's time to take action to prevent car accidents or more severe (and expensive) maintenance issues. You should pay attention to the check engine light, and when it comes on, schedule a visit with your mechanic immediately, whether your vehicle is due for service or not.

The engine is deafening while driving

If the spark plugs on your vehicle are not correctly maintained, they can cause damage to your engine. The primary function of your spark plugs is to create an ignition of ignition power in each cylinder, which allows fuel to combust efficiently and produce power when you accelerate. When this process stops working correctly, it reduces that cylinder's usefulness and will affect your vehicle's overall performance.

When should spark plugs be replaced?

Conventional spark plugs must be replaced every 30,000-50,000 miles. Iridium- or platinum-tipped spark plugs should be changed between 60,000 and 150,000 miles on most vehicles. The recommended replacement intervals are posted in the maintenance schedule in the owner's manual or a separate warranty and maintenance brochure for your car.

Should spark plugs be changed earlier as a precaution? 

It majorly depends on the make and model of your car, as well as its mileage. For example, if your vehicle has long-life spark plugs due at 100,000 miles and your dealer recommends changing them at 50,000 miles, it needs to be earlier. If the engine is good on gas and runs like new, consider waiting until closer to the recommended mileage.

How often should spark plugs be replaced?

The manufacturer's service schedule should replace spark plugs. Most carmakers recommend that spark plugs be replaced every 30,000 to 50,000 kilometres (18,640 to 31,050 miles), but this is the maximum duration. Spark plugs can and do fail anytime; therefore, it is best to be proactive about spark plug maintenance. You will prolong the life of your car engine and reduce running costs if you notice any of the above symptoms.

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

The spark plugs in your engine ignite a mixture of petrol and oxygen as it enters the cylinder. The combustion of the fuel mixture drives the engine. As the name indicates, spark plugs usually spark a considerably high voltage of 10,000-30,000 volts to ignite the air/fuel mixture. The performance of the spark plugs is critical, as they affect the engine's overall performance. Different kinds of spark plugs are available for many vehicles, including sports cars and race cars.


So, by now, you realize that multiple factors determine when to change your spark plugs, but it can also get a little complicated. You can follow the factory recommendations and ensure your vehicle is kept in peak shape for as long as possible. Your owner's manual should have a request for when this service should be done, but on the other hand, you want to ensure the health of your vehicle. And for that, you will need the help of a professionally trained mechanic for proper assistance. 

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