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Spark Plug Insulator Break

Discussion in 'Technical Chat' started by jeremy_283, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. Mar 6, 2012 at 7:43 PM
    #1
    jeremy_283

    jeremy_283 [OP] Super Member

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    I was curious as what do you think would happen if part of a spark plug insulator were to break or fall into the combustion chamber while an engine is running?
     
  2. Mar 6, 2012 at 7:48 PM
    #2
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. Moderator

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    If the part is small, it could get knocked out of the CC, and live the rest of its life in the exhaust someplace. Larger parts could cause damage to the piston, or sides of the cyl. walls, requireing a new piston/block.
     
  3. Mar 6, 2012 at 7:50 PM
    #3
    TrdSurgie

    TrdSurgie revised

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    I assume you were changing your plugs and found a broken plug? Bad things: valve damage, pistion, if it makes it into the exhuast i suppose it could hurt the cat?
     
  4. Mar 6, 2012 at 8:35 PM
    #4
    jeremy_283

    jeremy_283 [OP] Super Member

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    lol no, I use to gap plugs by using the tool and would wedge it against the electrode to open it up. Now i just use brute force and push straight up on the the "piece of metal" to keep any pressure off the electrode/insulator. When I was changing plugs last night the gapping tool slipped out while I was exerting force and not only did I scrape my knuckle against the spark plug threads and tear some flesh. I also heard a crack/snapping sound. It was probably just the sound of the two metals slipping past each other and "snapping"... but hey, i'm a worry-worry and it makes me think. I inspected the insulator and it looks fine, but hey-you never know :notsure:

    I don't have any nearby shops plus I needed to drive the truck the next morning so I assembled it.

    What would you have done?
     
  5. Mar 6, 2012 at 8:51 PM
    #5
    Rich91710

    Rich91710 Well-Known Member

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    Replace it.
    Ceramic is brittle and you may not see the damage.

    For future reference, "grip" the ground electrode at the curve of the "L"... you can open or close the gap by prying there without coming close to the insulator or having to "brute force" anything. That's why real spark plug gauges (wire, not the more modern "poker chip") have those slots in the tabs.
     
  6. Mar 6, 2012 at 8:59 PM
    #6
    jeremy_283

    jeremy_283 [OP] Super Member

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    The thing was with cracking/snapping sound I don't think it was the insulator cause in no way should I have been touching it with the particular spark plug I am speaking of. Also bad news, I don't remember which plug it was....

    But yet I was still VERY close to it and that why I worry...
     
  7. Mar 6, 2012 at 9:05 PM
    #7
    vbibi

    vbibi Well-Known Member

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    If this will help buy yourself a new plug. I found a good deal, attached.
    [FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Shipping Details : Pick Pro Parts [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Order #: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]xxxxxxxxxxxxx [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Shipping Method: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Standard [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Items: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]$13.02 [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Shipping & Handling: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]$5.10 [/SIZE][/FONT] ------ [FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Total Before Tax: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]$18.12 [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Estimated Tax To Be Collected:* [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]$0.00 [/SIZE][/FONT] ------ [FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]Order Total: [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]$18.12 [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]

    Delivery estimate: Mar. 12, 2012 - Mar. 15, 2012 [/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]6[/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=verdana,arial,helvetica][SIZE=-1]"Denso (3381) K20HR-U11 Traditional Spark Plug, Pack of 1"
    Automotive; $2.17
    In Stock
    Sold by: Pick Pro Parts [/SIZE][/FONT]
     
  8. Mar 7, 2012 at 3:43 PM
    #8
    TrdSurgie

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    Well with the lack of nearby shops I would have done the same. If I didn't see any broken parts or cracks I would have installed and forget about it. If it was crack or chipped I would cleaned and regapped one of the old plugs and put that in until I could get to a parts store.

    glad you didn't find any broken plugs when you were changing them. that could really suck.
     
  9. Mar 7, 2012 at 5:13 PM
    #9
    wolftree

    wolftree Well-Known Member

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    You will want to change the plugs fast. Broken ceramics will eat your cylinder walls up. It sounds terrible while it is eating them too.
     
  10. Mar 8, 2012 at 5:30 AM
    #10
    jeremy_283

    jeremy_283 [OP] Super Member

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    I changed them last night. The ones I removed looked fine but I replaced them anyways.
     
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