SaturnFans.com
what's new (beta) - classifieds - forums - photos


Go Back   SaturnFans.com Forums > Models > Saturn L-Series > L-Series Tech
Register FAQ Members List Groups Calendar Chat Room Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-03-2019, 11:11 PM   #1
rfisher
Member
rfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the rough
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 163
Default the old spark plug changing trick

hi sages- my 2.2 4cyl L100 engine is running fine at 182k. think the manual calls for 100k spark plug changes. had the car since new. considering doing a spark plug change. the original plugs were changed out pursuant to a dealer recall at 40k years ago along with the magneto(coil packs on top of the plugs). word was there was a defect in the magnetos. the engine ran fine before and after the job. plugs now have well over 100k on them. looks like an easy job from the top of the valve cover. fdryer said in an earlier post that this job was a "real chore" in his L300, but I suspect he was talking about a 3.0 v6 in that upscale model, not the 4cyl. have changed many plugs in various cars since 65. looks like the coil pack would have to be unscrewed and unplugged from the top of the valve cover with the plug cables and then unscrew the old plugs and install new regapped plugs. surmise the warning is to make sure the engine is cold(aluminum head) and use antisieze grease on the new plug threads. am I on the right track? thanks tons bob f

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rfisher's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rfisher reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
SaturnFans.com Sponsored Links
Old 07-04-2019, 12:37 AM   #2
02 LW300
Advanced Member
02 LW300 is a name known to all02 LW300 is a name known to all02 LW300 is a name known to all02 LW300 is a name known to all02 LW300 is a name known to all02 LW300 is a name known to all
 
02 LW300's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posts: 558
 

2002 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
2002 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Spot on! Keep the never seize to a minimum. I would replace the boots also, use a little dielectric grease on the springs.

...
2002 L200/5 loaded, loving my stick shift car now with KYB struts and adjustable rear control arms.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to 02 LW300's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help 02 LW300 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
02 LW300 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 02:06 AM   #3
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Yes, I was describing my spark plug change as extremely tedious relative to the V6 engine. Compared to your inline 4cyl engine, plug change is a breeze.

And by the way, the coil pack is just that, an epoxy encapsulated set of high voltage transformers triggered by the little finned aluminum box described as the ignition control module. This two pack is the entire ignition system controlled by signals from the ecm or pcm. No magnetos. Magnetos are used in piston engined aircraft, chain saws, weed wackers, snowblowers, and older outboard engines, older motorcycles with kick starters. Guess how I know? Car ignition systems are electrically and electronically controlled whether as old carburetor engines or EFI systems. Magnetos generate spark from spinning magnets to generate high voltage thru a transformer with electrical contact points. Before I was born, there may have been magnetos used in very old cars from the the beginning of the twentieth century. Distributors replaced magnetos as car batteries came into use with generators recharging batteries. Ancient history as I'm still 25........

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 08:09 AM   #4
rfisher
Member
rfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the rough
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 163
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

hi fd- thanks for your info. bet v6 plug change is hell on the rox. sounds like same on the 4 will be a breeze, without one f bomb. would you change out the coil packs too. it must be pretty well toasted since its been in there since 06, but hear that part costs a fortune. uncle moe said if it aint broke don't fix it. moe got many jeeps and shermans rolling that were stalled at Omaha. said he was lucky to have a sharpshooter with him to pick off jerry snipers while he started the jeeps. btw that coil pack system seems very long lasting. appreciate your input. bob f

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rfisher's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rfisher reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 10:06 AM   #5
Dsaturn
Member
Dsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really nice
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: West Virginia.
Posts: 300
 

2001 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

I found $55 coil packs on Ebay. If you get to a Upull J/Y pick up a couple and keep them in the car. They can be changed out with a few minor tools in minutes if one fails on the road.

...
https://www.infowars.com/

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Dsaturn's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Dsaturn reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Dsaturn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 03:21 PM   #6
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

rfisher, I cannot imagine the horror occurring in any combat zone except thinking training kicks in when all hell breaks loose. Honoring every man and woman in military service in personal ways may comfort those going into harm's way. I can understand the phrase 'brothers in arms' when things go wrong and they rely on each other in combat. As a nation, we cannot pay enough homage to those coming home intact, injured or dead. Perhaps some day this little orb we live on will achieve peace to turn every sword in plow shares or as we're revisiting another go around of landing on the moon with man with several nations committing resources to the effort and beyond a moon landing to try for Mars, political and religious differences may have to be put aside to determine if earthly human beings can work together to explore other planets.

If you search within Saturn forums, you'll come across several ignition issues where the ignition control module failed on 2.2L engines. My scientific wild ass guess (swag) is electronics don't like sitting on top of hot engines. My ecm sits on spacers over the engine. The coil packs on 2.2L engines seem to hold up. In a separate story but relevant, I replaced the front coil pack on my L300 ( ) on a hunch as soon as a heavy misfire occurred last year (103k miles). After checking for injector and compression, spark seemed ok but I went ahead and replaced the coil pack with success. L300 coil packs do not have ignition control modules. The ecm controls spark timing and switching.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 05:09 PM   #7
pierrot
Master Member
pierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud of
 
pierrot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Glendora, CA
Posts: 3,780
 

2000 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
...would you change out the coil packs too.
While I'm not fdryer I will say that my coil packs are factory originals. I have no plans to replace them presently.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
it must be pretty well toasted since its been in there since 06, but hear that part costs a fortune. uncle moe said if it aint broke don't fix it.
I'm with Uncle Moe. Unless you have a problem I see no reason to replace the coil packs (and no, they're not that expensive). FWIW, my ICM was replaced in late '01 or '02 under a recall although the original part hadn't failed. The second ICM is still on the car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
moe got many jeeps and shermans rolling that were stalled at Omaha. said he was lucky to have a sharpshooter with him to pick off jerry snipers while he started the jeeps.
God bless Uncle Moe!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
btw that coil pack system seems very long lasting.
Your assessment here is correct. Of course, if one wishes to replace their coil packs whether or not they've failed then that's their prerogative.

BTW, my factory service schedule actually doesn't show replacing the spark plugs until 150K miles! (Food for thought.) When replacing the spark plugs be aware that they're set somewhat deeply in the well. It would be best if you had an actual "spark plug socket" (5/8") which would grip the plug while removing or installing it. Short of that, use a small I.D. hose over the top of the spark plug when installing it so that the plug can be guided into the threaded hole and can also be turned to get some threads in.

...
329,000 miles - Holy canolli!
A leftist, deep-stater will get the nomination for POTUS. What follows if he gets his way? A bad economy, weak military, increased terrorism and a greater RED CHINA.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to pierrot's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help pierrot reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
pierrot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 05:36 PM   #8
rfisher
Member
rfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the rough
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 163
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

hi fd, pierrot and dsaturn.you folks are 3 of the sharpest Saturn sages on the board here. liked your analysis fd. maybe I will do what you said pierrot and wait until 150k to do the plugs. 4cyl. 2.2 still running fine and still gets its stated mpg of 25/33. thanks tons my bruthas bob f

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rfisher's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rfisher reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-04-2019, 10:38 PM   #9
ssicarman
Super Member
ssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to beholdssicarman is a splendid one to behold
 
ssicarman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Western Canada
Posts: 10,448
 
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Modern coils are able to produce a lot of voltage to over come large plug gaps.

So if after 100,000 plus miles of driving on them they can be worn/worn out and still let the engine run fairly normally as the spark will be able to jump a larger gap.

At a certain point though it becomes a matter of being able to remove the spark plugs from the engine after they have been in for a long time.

...
A lousy day in paradise is still a day in paradise.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to ssicarman's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help ssicarman reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
ssicarman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2019, 02:49 AM   #10
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Good points. To add some background stats 9at least in my case), when I removed my stock platinum plugs to replace them shy of the 100k mile replacement interval, I noticed zero wear, no large gap or other visual clues to show wear as older plain plugs from other cars displayed wear from less mileage. The gaps on every plug remained at factory setting, 0.040in. Amazing evidence for one set of (6) platinum spark plugs. All were showing the same tanned coloring with zero carbon deposits as if they were new. The redesign in coil technology to increase high voltage may be the key to firing a stronger spark to burn thru crap fuel on occasion as well as some oil consumption. Fortunately for me, I decided early to use synthetic oil, although modifying OCIs to an extended interval (doubling mileage but replacing oil filter at every oci). This may allow piston rings to have less wear, reduce scuffing, retain oil on cylinder walls,etc. All speculation on my part but proof of plugs looking like zero wear after nearly 100k miles means several things going right with no credit on my part.

I do recall one sports car I drove required plain plugs replaced at 50k miles. Those were from a 1st(?) generation EFI system still using a distributor but electronically switched using the Hall effect sensor. Those plugs also looked new with discoloration from regular use. Six plugs that could have remained for another 50k miles. Electronic ignition system boosting high voltages above 30k volts seem to provide the extra capability to prolong plug life. I've read that older distributor ignition systems using points and condenser were limited in generating high voltage as rpm increased due to mechanical dwell time (time needed for the high voltage coil to generate 18k-20k volts). Electronic ignition allowed high speed switching circuits to increase dwell times significantly, raising voltages to 45k volts.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-05-2019, 03:58 PM   #11
rb6667
Advanced Member
rb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to behold
 
rb6667's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 767
 

2004 L-Series 2.2L Wagon
2004 L-Series 3.0L Wagon
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Quote:
Originally Posted by 02 LW300 View Post
Spot on! Keep the never seize to a minimum. I would replace the boots also, use a little dielectric grease on the springs.
^^^ Agree with 02 LW300 Go easy on the dielectric grease. Factory says don't use it at all...But many use it on Alum heads.

One other " Peace of Mind" Tip: After you pull the coil pack/boots and before you remove the plugs, blow the area well with compressed air if you have it. Don't want anything falling down those open spark plug holes.

...
2004 L-Series Wagon 2.2
2004 L-Series Wagon 2.2
2004 L-Series Wagon 3.0

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rb6667's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rb6667 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rb6667 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2019, 10:13 AM   #12
rfisher
Member
rfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the rough
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 163
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick revisited

hi pierrot and other sages - thank you for your sageries on the spark plugs. checked some details . back in oct 03 at 41k a dealer recall replaced the plugs and the ignition module which have run fine since. 2.2 4 cyl has 182k miles. that means 141k miles on the plugs . do not know if the coil packs were changed then too. checked with my Haynes manual and the maintenance schedule from Saturn which is in the pocket of the owners manual which came with the new car(wow over 400 pages!) both say to change plugs at 100k miles. heres my plan- change the plugs - think gap is .60. since I will have the whole apparatus disassembled on the top of the valve cover, replace the coil packs, ignition module and rubber boots. put silicone dielectric grease coating inside the rubber boots, put anti sieze grease on the plug threads. engine will be cold after sitting overnight- don't want to strip plug threads in the aluminum head. figured might as well replace the whole shooting match of parts since probably wont do this job again until the end of the next war. also plan to use the same type plugs that the dealer put in on the recall(probably ac copper jobs). concerned with ssicarmans concern about the plugs being in there too long(seizing risk?). remember chatting with him here many years ago about Saturn matters .also will try to reduce dropping f bombs during job as I have tried often since 65. feel very free to critique my approach herein my bruthas. thanks tons bob f

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rfisher's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rfisher reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2019, 02:32 PM   #13
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

I'm pretty sure you're using platinum spark plugs to have them last so long. Check your owner's manual and/or members may chime in. As to plug gap, I think it's 0.045. According too service manuals, no anti size compound on plugs. GM waffles from engine to engine about when you use anti seize or not on spark plugs. And with a torque wrench, 15in lbs of tightening. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I like being a sagerie rather than a sage. There's a certain mystique to making up a new term. Suggesting something vague. Vaguery?

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2019, 06:16 PM   #14
rb6667
Advanced Member
rb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to beholdrb6667 is a splendid one to behold
 
rb6667's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 767
 

2004 L-Series 2.2L Wagon
2004 L-Series 3.0L Wagon
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

The AC Delco Irridium plugs are the way to go on the 2.2. They are a little pricey...but they will last 100K miles easily.

FWIW. I do use anti-seize very lightly on the threads. Years ago I learned the hard way on an aluminum head Big Block Chevy. Stripped the spark plugs holes while removing plugs that were installed without anti-seize.

...
2004 L-Series Wagon 2.2
2004 L-Series Wagon 2.2
2004 L-Series Wagon 3.0

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rb6667's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rb6667 reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rb6667 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 12:52 AM   #15
pierrot
Master Member
pierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud of
 
pierrot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Glendora, CA
Posts: 3,780
 

2000 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

fdryer was, of course, correct. The factory recommended spark plugs are/were platinum. The originals in my car were Bosch spark plugs. The second set were AC Delco Rapid Fire platinums. Currently, I'm running with AC Delco Iridium plugs purchased through RockAuto and which also had a good rebate some years ago. (There are rebates available now from AC Delco and Autolite at RockAuto. Be sure to avail yourself of them if possible from whatever source you use to purchase the spark plugs.)

I cannot say for certain if the AC Delco plugs were boxed with anti-seize on them, but I would definitely use some. As rb6667 pointed out, you needn't use much.

...
329,000 miles - Holy canolli!
A leftist, deep-stater will get the nomination for POTUS. What follows if he gets his way? A bad economy, weak military, increased terrorism and a greater RED CHINA.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to pierrot's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help pierrot reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
pierrot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 01:14 AM   #16
pierrot
Master Member
pierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud ofpierrot has much to be proud of
 
pierrot's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Glendora, CA
Posts: 3,780
 

2000 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick revisited

My FSM states the spark plug gap is .045". The torque is 15 ft-lbs. There is a warning regarding the use of anti-seize compound:

"DO NOT coat spark plug threads with anti-seize compound. If anti-seize compound is used and spark plugs are over torqued ( emphasis mine), damage to the cylinder head threads may result." The issue raised here is not as much about the use of the compound as it is the problem of over torqueing the spark plugs at installation.

...
329,000 miles - Holy canolli!
A leftist, deep-stater will get the nomination for POTUS. What follows if he gets his way? A bad economy, weak military, increased terrorism and a greater RED CHINA.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to pierrot's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help pierrot reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
pierrot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 06:49 AM   #17
Dsaturn
Member
Dsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really niceDsaturn is just really nice
 
Join Date: May 2017
Location: West Virginia.
Posts: 300
 

2001 L-Series 2.2L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

I use the Autolite XPs in my 2.2. When I first bought the car 2 years ago I put Autolites in. Gas mileage was up to 32mpg on highway. I do not recall the amount of miles on them last month when I changed them but they probably would have lasted another 2 years because I do not put a lot of miles on my vehicle each year.
As for the anti-seize compound I do not use it but wish I had when I first changed them two years ago because to get the plugs loose this time I had to use a small 3/8 breaker bar to get them out.

...
https://www.infowars.com/

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to Dsaturn's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help Dsaturn reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
Dsaturn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 10:36 AM   #18
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Post Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Please correct me if I'm mistaken for the following historical information.

Year's ago when we were still in the Neanderthal Age, cast iron engines used black oxide coated spark plugs. The oxide coating wards off corrosion but eventually rust appears. I think black oxide coating may be similar to gun blueing on firearms to coat machined barrels and actions with a dark tint but a light film of oil is recommended against outdoor exposure. Anyway, b-o-c plugs threaded into cast iron cylinder heads with plugs were the fashion statement back then. I don't know if there was any electrolysis reactions between steel plugs and cast iron cylinder heads and/or if anti seize compound was used or recommended. Steel and cast iron threads are difficult to strip compared aluminum threads. Fast forward to modern EFI engines using aluminum cylinder heads and the same machined steel spark plugs.

The aluminum cylinder heads with steel spark plugs presents a real problem with electrolysis, chemical reactions between two dissimilar metals that basically results in creating a form of loctite when plugs seize in aluminum threads. The difference between older (Neanderthal) plugs and new shiny plugs? The 'shiny' plugs are nickel plating to act as a barrier between steel and aluminum while also acting as a lubricant to prevent plugs from seizing in aluminum cylinder heads. Anyone uninformed about dissimilar metals reacting in a chemical process may inadvertently use older black oxide coated plugs in their aluminum cylinder heads and regret it. If anti seize isn't used, these plugs react as the black oxide coating does nothing against electrolysis so steel and aluminum begin to react and create a chemical loctite to seize plugs in place. Guess the results of this outcome?

I've read enough GM service manuals to note one engine procedure recommends both practices, using and not using anti seize. Spark plugs recommended are shiny types, meaning they're nickel plated. It doesn't matter whether they're plain or exotic plugs (platinum or yttrium). When recommending against a/s compound, GM mentions against cleaning plated spark plugs with a wire brush as this damages soft nickel plating, exacerbating the possibility of exposed steel threads in aluminum cylinder heads to seizing. No mention of using a toothbrush and solvent or rag to wipe off dirt on plugs. GM and other engine manufacturers are well aware of different cylinder head metallurgy and which plug type to minimize, reduce or eliminate electrolysis from occurring between different metals coming into physical contact with each other.

The 2.2L engine for GM specifies not using anti seize and warns of over tightening plugs with anti seize compound due to its lubricating qualities lowering friction needed to create torque. When a/s compound is used, the lubricating qualities lowers friction so torque specs must be lowered otherwise the same torque used with a/s tightens threads against each other resulting in stripping the softer metal - aluminum. As usual, follow service manual recommendations or suffer the consequences of deviating from procedures. Experienced persons will have more than average knowledge to make informed choices whether to use a/s compound against procedures and use less torque versus published values or stick with non a/s use and normal torque values. The devil is in the details.......

And back to our regular scheduled programming.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 12:34 PM   #19
rfisher
Member
rfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the roughrfisher is a jewel in the rough
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 163
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

hi fd- think what you say is correct. haven't seen the black oxide coated plugs in a few years. not sure if they are generally available. all the plugs of recent vintage I have seen lately are shiny with the nickel coated threads. they are designed for aluminum heads/spark plug holes. still think a little anti seize is some protection. don't want to give a shyster in a clip joint a $1k head replacement home run(grand slam) if the threads strip . in my war against clippers you have to be ready to use dirty tricks(suggest novices who need wising up watch movie inglorious basterds). that happened to a dodge 318 v8 I worked on and I used helicoils in three stripped spark plug holes. worked like a mofo. will be starting the 2.2 plug, etc job soon with my plans. moe once told me as soon as you hit the beach at Omaha and jerry fire you could throw the plans in the drink. hope that doesn't apply to pulling plugs in the 2.2. will keep you posted. maybe ill get the distinguished wrenching cross. thanks tons bob f

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to rfisher's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help rfisher reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
rfisher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-10-2019, 02:28 PM   #20
fdryer
Super Member
fdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond reputefdryer has a reputation beyond repute
 
fdryer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NYC
Posts: 43,610
 

2003 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default Re: the old spark plug changing trick

Just a guess on my part but black oxide coated spark plugs may be gone and simply replaced with plated ones as it doesn't change heat range but does allow for improved anti seize characteristics when used in older engines with cast iron cylinder heads. With our without a/s.

REWARD EXCELLENCE!

Add to fdryer's Reputation
Rate the quality of this post and help fdryer reputation points. Click the reputation button near the bottom left corner of this message box. Thank you!
fdryer is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Spark Plug Changing Nightmare - Not a Saturn fmctaurus S-Series General 15 03-13-2013 05:37 PM
pic of old spark plug after changing this evening (large picture) Disophisis S-Series General 10 04-20-2010 05:02 PM
Changing spark plug wires on '99 SL2 - Best way? melissa.bluth13 S-Series Tech 7 04-02-2010 12:55 AM
1998 sl2- oil where the spark plug boot meets the spark plug in 1st cylender scrapmedallord S-Series Tech 7 08-15-2009 12:31 AM
Need Help Changing Spark Plug Wires Don Brewer Community Center 3 06-28-2008 12:36 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:27 AM.

Advanced Forum Search | Advanced Photo Search


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SaturnFans.com. The Saturn Enthusiasts Site.