Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Chanukah of Spark Plugs

1 Ford Ranger.

1 2.3L 4 Cylinder engine.

8 spark plugs on said engine.

1 quest: replace 1 spark plug per day for an eight day festival of combustion.

Day One (2/16/09):

Starting with the front plug on the intake side. It's conveniently located right next to the back of the alternator. No problem. Re-locate alternator to my workbench, pull boot, unscrew plug, gap new plug, grease it, screw it in, replace boot.

Me: 1, Spark plugs: 0

Day Two (2/17/09):

Continuing towards the back of the engine with the second plug on the intake side. I see that I could remove the PCV valve and get to this one much more easily, but I don't want to take my whole engine apart. Instead I fashion this attachment to my socket wrench:

Here's the breakdown:

3/8" socket wrench
3/8 to 1/4" adapter
1/4" socket
6 inch flexible 1/4" extension
1/4 to 3/8" adapter
3" 3/8" extension
3/8" universal swivel joint
3/4" spark plug socket

I insert this whole assembly into the maze of wires and hoses and manage to get it onto the plug. Torque applied = success! Plug removed, new plug gapped and greased, carefully snaked through everything back into the engine.

Stupid mistake #1: I left the rubber boot that holds the plug in the socket on, and now it's stuck on the plug down inside the engine. No hole leading to the plug is large enough to accomodate my hand so I can get it out of there. Result? I have to remove the PCV valve to get my hand in there to remove the boot.

Remove PCV valve, retrieve rubber boot, replace wiring boot.

Me: 2, spark plugs:0

Stay tuned tomorrow for plug #3!

-The Krunchy Krab

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