Engine & Gearbox Spark Plug Fouled

Discussion in '6th Generation (1997-2002)' started by AndyB1976, Wednesday 19th Feb, 2014.

  1. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    Hello guys.

    You might remember I got my fuel lines done in Jan as part of the MOT. A week or so later I thought I felt a bit of hesitation, during an overtake of a parked vehicle, uphill. I looked at the fuel line connections around the engine and no fuel spill or dripping around there at least.

    Last night it hesitated again after going uphill, thankfully it made it to the top and across the junction but when I turned into my lane it hesitated and cut out. It took about 20secs for it to restart. Off it went happily and made it back from 3-4 mile journey without any problem.

    Now I know the sparks need to be done (last done Sept2010, 16000miles ago), infact I've have had them sitting in a drawer for 6mth but the car was running sweet so thought I'll see how long it goes.

    So today, I got the sparks out and noticed cylinder plug 4 looked different. I had a look online and it appears to be dry fouled.

    What would you recommend? A compression test to begin with?

    Plugs 4 3 2 1

    IMG_3026r_zpseca58ce0.

    Ok plug

    IMG_3029r_zpsa397c67e.

    Plug 4

    IMG_3031r_zpsb8768c3b.
    IMG_3027r_zps28d7d76b.
     
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  2. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
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    That makes no sense matey !! you would see 1 and 3 cylinder the first to go weak and show what is happening as seen on plug 4, the fact there is no other plug doing the same would suggest the problem lie somewhere else.

    However the white pitting on the electrode is tale tale sign of overheating or lean mixture.. Now have you changed the 02 sensor on the exhaust with an aftermarket one i.e non genuine? it looks like it under fuelling the with a super lean AFR, for cylinder four check EGR passages to see there is no oil coming in.

    I take the plugs were all torque as you can see the same if the plugs were not tight to spec, a compression or leak down test will help to gather more info.
     
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  3. Rhys Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    Where you in VTEC when the car hesitated ?
     
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  4. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    Thanks guys. Some further analysis.

    Spark Plug Analysis - Technical Information - NGK Spark Plugs Australia


    No I wasn't in VTEC, the first time I thought I felt it was also mid/just after gear change so wasn't sure if my clutch control had gone awry lol. I never really drive the car fast in the respect that it gets to see VTEC often.

    There are no new parts regarding the O2 sensors, still running the originals that came in the car. Infact the only non OEM thing on the car is the copper brake pipes!
    The EGR ports haven't been done ever so that is on a to do list, the sparks were torqued to 13ft-lb with a Halfords Pro Torque wrench (calibrated 2010). I have had these plugs out a few times, whilst checking and rechecking the valve clearances, but all plugs have been subject to the same history maybe the crush washer needs a closer look.

    EDIT
    Any recommendations on a decent Compression Tester? I don't have a compressor so can't do a leakdown, might ask the local garage to test if it comes to that.
     
    Last edited: Wednesday 19th Feb, 2014
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  5. Rhys Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

    If not in VTEC then that rules out my theory ha ha sorry dude.
     
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  6. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    No worries, all suggestions are welcome!
     
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  7. Doc Expert Advisor ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

    Matt Peterborough
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    As it's only happening on the one cylinder I would possibly look to see if the injector is blocked and under fueling.
     
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  8. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    OK, would I be able to hear the solenoid - would that tell me if it was blocked or could that still be clicking away happily?

    Maybe i need to give it a motorway blast with something more than RON95 in the tank. Honestly, I drive like James May lol.
     
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  9. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

    England CJ Leeds
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    Doc all the plugs have excessive white graining it not down to one cylinder. Thinking off it a few plugs the crush washers look not adequately crushed so that can be a reason too.
     
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  10. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    Felt some more hesitation today, with the new plugs in place (forgot to say replaced the air filter 'OEM' yesterday aswell)

    Could weak ignition be a cause? Maybe an issue with the HT Lead? Anyone recommend a compression tester so I can eliminate that?

    thanks ;-)
     
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  11. SpeedyGee Administrator Staff Team

    England Speedy Birmingham
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    Andy get a leak down test done from somewhere, it'll tell you much more than a compression test would.
     
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  12. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

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    Its been a few years since I used a compression tester. I used it on my first gen as the plugs are offset so you can get a good seal on the mordern ones you have a long tube which you have to hold down to get a good seal really fiddy.. I am not sure if they have made one which does away with this poor set up.

    so pass mate don't have a scooby but would like to know which tool to use.
     
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  13. SpeedyGee Administrator Staff Team

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    I've got a Sealey (CT955) compression tester but never use it.

    Any time I need to check the health of an engine I whip out the Sealey (VSE2020) leak down tester kit.
     
    Last edited: Thursday 20th Feb, 2014
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  14. Ichiban Founder Staff Team

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    see that tester is the one you have to hold on and if its not properly seated you get poor readings.. Not a fan of those yes leak down tester is the way forward.
     
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  15. SpeedyGee Administrator Staff Team

    England Speedy Birmingham
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    I just edited my post I think the compression tester I have is a CT955 (not CT951)... it comes with several adaptors for different sized spark plugs and also comes with a hold down adaptor. I would never use the hold down one, not only would you get poor readings but you could easily cause some damage if the tester springs off at the wrong time.
     
    Last edited: Thursday 20th Feb, 2014
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  16. AndyB1976 Valued Contributor ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

    United Kingdom Andy Aberfoyle
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    Cheers again guys.. I was just looking at that very model of the Sealey leakdown tester.

    Just had a listen to my injectors

    [video=youtube_share;YyInI-tKUyk]http://youtu.be/YyInI-tKUyk[/video]

    - - - Updated - - -

    Would this be ok to work with the tester, would I need any futher hoses or couplings? I know small compressors are usually never recommended!!

    http://www.screwfix.com/p/stanley-8216035scr011-24ltr-compressor-with-5-piece-accessory-kit-240v/48089#product_additional_details_container