Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)


Technical information and Q&A applicable to all years and models of Goldwings
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tinwacker
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by tinwacker » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:18 pm



Wow those are way more burnt than his was. As a matter fact his looked good except for the seedie on the bottom
The electrodes were still fairly good
I know he runs regular pump gas but so do I and mine have never looked like that. I would have to look at my records but I bet I’ve changed mine almost half dozen times



winguyjo
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wing2 : 1980 gl1100 interstate; resurrection complete. SOLD.
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by winguyjo » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:08 pm

"this picture shows the results of improper fuel burn, from bad fuel/air mixture."

too rich or too lean ?

tinwacker
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by tinwacker » Mon Jan 07, 2019 8:45 am

NO Picture ??? DID you mean the other ones

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OldguyGlen
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by OldguyGlen » Tue Jan 08, 2019 4:59 pm

A few general comments from an old guy.
While platinum and iridium alloys are an improvement, the real reason spark plugs last so long today is in the ignition voltage. Back in the day (40's, 50's) point type ignitions and magnetos might produce 5,000-10,000 volts. Today's electronic ignitions produce 40,000 - 80,000 volts. More volts = less current for the same energy level. It is the current that erodes the plug materials. I ran my '02 Monte Carlo 300,000 miles on the original plugs. But there is a price to pay... higher volts puts more stress on the wires. Most "misfires" today are wire flaws (the newer coil-in-cap design helps here). You may need to change the wires more often than the plugs! The comments on square edges is also true. You can square up the electrodes with a file and re-gap. And yes, I have replaced plugs that would have cleaned up from fouling, but it is easier to install new ones. Gas Stations all used to have spark plug cleaners in the shop. Usually would let you clean up a plug or two at no charge. Small bead-blast machines that looked like a pencil sharpener. But they would also abrade the gloss off the ceramic and lead to quicker fouling in the future.

DaveO430
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by DaveO430 » Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:10 am

Most of these replys are something that happened TO a spark plug before it's normal life expectancy, not the plug's fault it failed. I have seen bad plugs new out of the box, it happens, but once the proper plugs are installed and running correctly they usually last far longer then the recommended change interval.

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dingdong
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by dingdong » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:17 am

DaveO430 wrote:
Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:10 am
Most of these replys are something that happened TO a spark plug before it's normal life expectancy, not the plug's fault it failed. I have seen bad plugs new out of the box, it happens, but once the proper plugs are installed and running correctly they usually last far longer then the recommended change interval.
This is the exact reason I started this thread. It is almost never a bad plug but a poorly tuned bike. However one of the first suggestions is to replace the plugs on a poor running engine. Replacing fouled plugs will only get you more fouled plugs unless you address the cause.
Tom

John F. Kennedy would be impeached by todays liberal Democratic socialist party.

Terry D
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by Terry D » Sun Apr 21, 2019 9:45 pm

I had a AC Sparkplug go bad in a high compression 327 V-8 in my 57 Chevy back in 1969. The porcelain blew out of the threaded jacket. There it was being held by the sparkplug wire. Easy enough to spot that when I lifted the hood.

Goldwing7777
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Re: Do spark plugs really go bad? (Ponderment)

Post by Goldwing7777 » Wed Jun 05, 2019 4:01 am

The answer is - very occasionally but rather more often if it is an R-type (resistor) plug. (Do NOT believe anyone who states blandly "NO" - they just have not had one yet ... ).

Had a new NGK go dead on an air-cooled Beetle after just 400 miles. Changed it (instant fix) and no further problems over 40,000 miles.

Have had several R-type plugs 'die' without warning and replaced with non-R and no more problems. QED.
I will NOT fit an R-type plug now - I do not trust them.



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