Appearance, Symptoms, and Trouble it May Cause. For optimum performance, your engine’s spark plugs should be clean with no damage to the electrodes. Chances are you have nothing to worry about. This will show possible bent valves or other possible problems. 03/04/2019 by If there is metal floating around the cylinder it could be scoring the cylinder walls or damaging valves. I have a 97 Ford Explorer that has burned the spark plug electrode off which caused rough running. The spark plug also has a steel jacket, which allows the threaded end of the plug to be torqued into the cylinder head. The electrode most likely went out the exhaust valve and is now stuck in the catalytic converter (something this small will not cause an issue) or it passed entirely out of the exhaust system. There are other factors that can reduce plug life (all spark plugs eventually wear out; it’s just a question of when). Loose spark plugs pull air into the combustion chamber and lean that cylinder. No power and wants to die. It ran fine! A “hot” spark plug lengthens the depth of the ceramic which lengthens the distance from the center electrode end of the plug to where it contacts the spark plug shell. With this tool you can sometimes see physical damage inside the cylinder. Other manufacturers indicate loose plugs can be the cause due to vibration (NGK), also loose plugs tend to damage plug threads, as the thread is the point of electrical connection and loose plugs would experience intermittent grounding. I think Bosch answered correctly…. I would think detonation would cause this but there are no … Alternatively, they could be bad plugs, but in general NGK is very good so that is a bit of a stretch, especially if it keeps happening in the same cylinder. First scenario would be that it was blown out of the cylinder and is now somewhere in your exhaust pipe. The most common reason that we find is that the spark plug in any of the cylinder has melted. If the engine is not performing properly and on removing a spark plug it is found that the electrodes have melted or the porcelain insulation has broken, this could be construed as a spark plug fault, but note that some other possible causes for the poor engine performance are problems with the valves, valve seats or pistons. Half of the ceramic casing on the plug I pulled out was gone. Bosch indicates low KV will cause ground electrode damage, aka barely enough spark to fire the plug, additionally they indicate additives can be the cause. This happen to me it's 2/07/2020 did a compression test it was OK stuck a camera inside the spark plug hole and everything was fine so its probably in the muffler. This translates to an unreliable supply of energy for your vehicle. Deposits Insualtor nose and electrodes encrusted with a build of deposits - usually off white in colour. Dr. Sophie Redmondstraat #75, Paramaribo, Suriname, Tel: 597-426480 / Center electrodes can be melted or eroded by thermal overload due to auto-ignition (i.e. So I checked the plug and the electrode broke off of the spark plug. Same plug as the previous one in the vise, but this photo shows the base after wiping the glazed fuel coating off, note that the plating is still intact and has not seen any heat. If you want, you could have a mechanic do a compression check on each cylinder. The oil deposits may also have hardened to a pale brown crust. Not getting it looked at could lead to big repair bills down the line. Note also that if the spark plug is insufficiently tightened when fitted (i.e., the torque was less than the standard tightening torque), the plug may loosen. Will occur when spark plug tip temperature is insufficient to burn off carbon, fuel, oil or other deposits. Troubleshooting Most spark plug problems happen because of deposits from the combustion process. Repair guides and support for cars and trucks by Ford Motor Company. This is not common. There could be bits damaging the piston, which would cause hot spots on the surface (and again, detonation after a while) that could chew up your spark plug tips. (1) Spark plug selection ・ As a countermeasure to increased stress on the ground electrode, changing to a spark plug with a small ground electrode is an effective way to handle the problem from the plug side. Richard Hopkins, A peace of the spark plug broke off and fell into the cylinder wall and I started it and now it's knocking, I expect it carboned up and resulted in high heat and a piece of either the electrode or the ground broke off and fell into the cylinder. Note also that if the spark plug is insufficiently tightened when fitted (i.e., the torque was less than the standard tightening torque), the plug may loosen. When I went to check my spark plugs I found 2 spark plugs that were pushed in from the pistons. Other proclamations are lean mixture and Rich mixture in the cylinders, however with todays vehicles this is doubtful unless one modified their engine, and fuel system. Next stop is the shop which I Hate wit a Passion. From there, the heat is dissipated into the cylinder head and eventually into the cooling system. Since the spark plugs are fitted in the engine’s cylinder head, they are subject to the same vibrations as the engine. Third scenario would be that the electrode stuck between the valve and the valve seat, the piston went up and hit the valve, and now the valve is bent. Second scenario would be that the electrode is still somewhere in the cylinder, maybe between the piston and the cylinder, that might lead to scratches and that to severe damage of the engine. aaronscottartist. Comment please!!!!!!! Terms — A fouled or bad spark plug is a plug that has become covered with a substance like oil, fuel or … Older-style ignition coils were oil-filled as a coolant. what damage did it do. Whereas a conventional side electrode will (admittedly, rarely) come adrift in use and potentially cause engine damage, this is impossible with a surface discharge plug, as there is nothing to break off. If your spark plugs become dirty or fouled, it can affect how your engine runs. I do wonder why it came off in the first. The carbon causes the lower half of the spark-plug shell to stick in the head and separate from the upper shell when the spark plug is turned for removal. spark plug electrode broke off went into cylinder. Most often car owners find that the spark plug in their cars has turned inefficient. It could even be that one or more of the spark plugs are not good (i.e. Anonymous. That's a clear indication that the soot glazed over and insulated the plug base and electrode instead of burning the soot off. February 7 by If the auto-ignition/thermal overload is bad enough, you can end up with simultaneous damage to the center electrode and ground electrode (s), and sometimes you end … The higher the engine’s revving range and output, the stronger is the vibration. What would cause a spark plug to burn the electrode off? Are you certain a piece of the sparkplug broke off? Once a new plug … Anyway, sometime last July-August it had a major malfunction. 597-420130, Mobiel: 7262625 The shop did a leak down test and found that the one cylinder that had the broken spark plug is experiencing about a 30% compression loss. Here, let us analyze common issues and find their solutions too. The basic construction of a spark plug uses an upper contact tip that receives voltage from the ignition system through a spark plug wire. It more likely is a product of the damage. The center electrode ends in a gold or palladiu… Wet-fouled spark plugs must be changed or spark plugs will not fire. If you remove the secondary lead from an oil-filled coil and it is wet, the coil needs to be replaced. The side electrode design tends to wear faster than a traditional plug. Hope this helps resolve the issue for folks with this predicament, My 2007 ford expedition has been breaking off the electrode tips of my plugs. Thank You again, mechanic told 2,000 to fix it. Thanks Rob! If it does loosen, it will be subject to abnormal vibration and this can cause the ground electrode to break off. to miss-fire. My opinion, if it's running fine, don't worry about it. Too rich fuel mixture? After the spark plugs have been in the engine for a while, carbon deposits form around the spark plug tube, between the spark plug and the cylinder head. Pre-ignition from an improperly timed engine can cause this, as can an incorrect air to fuel ratio. The defective plugs cause the vehicle to not function. oldturkey03, .the electrode put a hole in the piston when it came out, 11/13/2016 by It may be soaked or a little wet, depending on how serious the leak is. Spark Plug Electrode Breaking Off. I don't think the part is stuck between a piston and cylinder wall. When the firing end of the plug has overheated, the ceramics may break or the electrodes may melt. The loose plug can definitely burn the electrode off. Spark plugs have been a critical component of the internal combustion engine for years. I have a 1999 Ford Taurus. The spark plug before this one was pretty black so I think it was jetted rich. but this is an old 1980s problem prior to fuel injection, where carburetors would feed continuous fuel to the engine. Copyright © 2014 Asia International N.V. All rights reserverd. (RockAuto.com is a MotorWeek Sponsor) Spark plugs can seize up in aluminum cylinder heads and cause big problems. Under usual engine condition, the plug does not overheat. When there is oil on spark plugs, the electrodes and insulator nose will be fouled with oil. Note, however, that it gets extremely hot in the case of abnormal combustion (ex. 2 1. Therefore its highly likely the Bosch answer is correct, as dirty plug threads would cause problems with electrode grounding. The tip continues down as the center electrode through an insulated core composed of a ceramic housing, usually made of porcelain. E-mail: info@asianv.sr. Possible causes are overadvanced ignition timing, air/fuel mixture too lean, water or oil level too low, plugs not fitted (tightened) correctly, plug heat range too hot. I accidently dropped pencil in spark plugs and hole while mesuring tdc how can I remove it? aaronscottartist, 10/28/2016 by Later designs were made with epoxy (identified as e-core coils). Plug was passenger side rear plug. If the ground electrode’s weld becomes unable to withstand the vibration fatigue, it will break. Linda Kennedy. I turned it back on too see if it was still doing it and it was..so I'm thinking when I took the plug out the half of the ceramic on the plug fell down into the hole right?????? Seems like excessive heat is the only thing that could cause this but how did it get THAT hot. And what would have to be done to fix it!?! The deposits that form on the spark plugs, can result in pre-ignition of the fuel. I have already replaced plugs and coils at 100k miles. Erosion at these points creates a larger gap between the center and ground electrodes, causing plug misfire. Accessibility. What would cause a spark plug to break? high – speed knocking, pre – ignition). christao.g.4141971, Hi Linda, The only way to tell for sure the amount of damage and to keep more from happening is to remove the head and look. Thus, if the engine design requires a side discharge plug, more ground electrodes extend plug life. Ralph. I was doing plugs today and when I took my first plug out. ... wall side of the engine if one is not careful and attentive to the possibilities of damage to the plug caused by the plug socket or trying to get the wire off with pliers or some sort of pry bar. Asia International N.V. Official Dealer in Suriname. Any ideas? If the firing end of a spark plug is brown or light gray, the condition can be judged to be good and the spark plug is functioning optimally. The spark is actually bridging the internal break in the secondary windings, leaving less energy for the spark plug. Finally there are stories of this condition (missing ground electrode) occurring often with Subaru vehicles. I had my valves break off and my car ran for 2 months with only 14 valves. I would pull and inspect all the plugs just to be sure they are ok. How much if any damage did it do? Will be checking plugs again soon. This post is 10 year old and still helping people! At the time I had NGK Iridium Plugs in. It's a 6 cyl engine. The common reasons are many. The owners remove all of the plugs, throughly clean the threads and clean out the bores, replace the plugs and plug wires, and the problem goes away. It could be the leads, or it could be that one or more of the spark plugs do not have the correct gap set. Some mechanics also have a diagnostic scope or camera that can be put into each cylinder via the spark plug hole. This can be exacerbated with the use of anti-seize compound on the spark plug threads, which is a mistake common among mechanics who ignore the fact later plugs have anti-seize nickel applied during manufacturing and therefore need no further anti-seize applied to the threads. So, no spark across plug gap will cause a misfire. The scenarios are sorted from: sounds logic, maybe and ......naaah, Still attempting to figure this one out? It looks as though the Ground electrode has snapped clean off. Will cause spark to leach to metal shell. Although there are many different cases, if the insulation resistance between the center electrode and the shell is over 10 ohms, the engine can be started normally. Note also that if the spark plug is insufficiently tightened when fitted (i.e., the torque was less than the standard tightening torque), the plug may loosen. It has 114k miles. In that particular cylinder the end of the spark plug was missing. There are quite a few things. Well, the very bad news is that evidently the electrodes off one spark plug broke off into the engine!!!!! that depends on what happened to the electrode. 10/28/2016 by Examples: 2-ground electrode plug, small ground electrode plug (taper cut), racing plug, surface discharge plug, etc. If it does loosen, it will be subject to abnormal vibration and this can cause the ground electrode to break off. If it does loosen, it will be subject to abnormal vibration and this can cause the ground electrode to break off. Bosch indicates low KV will cause ground electrode damage, aka barely enough spark to fire the plug, additionally they indicate additives can be the cause. I undrestand that carbon build-up could eventually reach a spark plug with the piston at tdc; but I dont think that is the case since I have not been fighting any pining problems or … cracked porcelain, gunked electrode, etc). Overheating Damage: Overheating spark plugs can cause the electrode to wear faster. The spark plug electrode seems to have desintigrated. Thanks, © 2020 iFixit — Licensed under Creative Commons — Privacy — If the car is running fine, not overheating, does not feel or sound like it is missing then I wouldn't worry about it. knocking). As shown in Figure 1, the tip of the ground electrode vibrates with the weld as the fulcrum. Dry and Wet Fouling. spark plug needs changing due to broken porcelin surrounding the electrode which in turn causes the #1cyl. Surface-discharge spark plugs have been produced by inter alia, Denso, NGK, … Its a 2000 ford escort zx2 coupe!!! I'm still trying to figure out what caused me to break a valve. Now it is running the same as before. Just because they find a broken electrode, does not mean that the broken electrode was the cause of the damage. The read the code and it turned out to be a misfire on the 2nd cylinder. This is really Pissing me off cause it feels like I jus spent a Thousand and some change for nothing. Note 1: The standard spark plug types fitted in high-revving, high-output engines are the multi-electrode type that is not so susceptible to electrode breakage and the type with a sparking portion that does not project very far; be sure to use the authorized spark plugs. Historically its been contributed to tick over or run on from deposits on the top of the pistons, caused from low octane fuel …. Each engine generates its own individual vibrations. When I started it when I got my first plug and wire done it was tapping ...I shut it off. Replace the plugs and try again. The broken electrode would not cause that much damage. See Photo 1. Ralph, dont really know skips a little bit but runs, 05/01/2010 by The normal piston to cylinder wall clearance is from .003 to .008 of an inch (it can be less or more depending on engine, components, intended use etc). I notice today that another one of my spark plugs was missing part of the electrode. Note 1: Photo 1: Broken ground electrode The piece that broke off would have to be very small and land perfectly for it to be wedged in this small gap. Jus spent a Thousand and some change for nothing answer is correct, as can an incorrect air fuel... 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