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Old 04-17-2011, 08:39 PM   #1
The Motel Fella
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Default 2006-2007 WRX (Maybe STi) Spark Plug Change How To

Hoping I don't replicate someone else's work...but I didn't have anything else to do and search failed me.
I read the scoobymods how to for the 2.0 but figured I'd do an update for my model years.

So here goes.

Tools I Used:

5/8" Spark Plug Socket
3" Extension
6" Extension
3/8 Drive ratchet
10mm Deepwell socket
12mm Standard depth socket
3/8 drive torque wrench (with a 10+ ft lbs scale)
Breaker bar/extender (I use a length of cast iron pipe)
Di-Electric Tuneup Grease
Patience
NOTE: I always reinstall bolts first by hand to prevent crossthreading.

How To:
  • Pop Hood.
  • Remove the snorkel by removing the two 10mm bolts. Pry it (using some care) from the fender air box.
  • Release hoses and wire loom from the top of the air filter box
  • Remove airflow sensor connectorfrom snorkel/tube (press tab and pull)
  • Unscrew two band clamps (not necessary to unscrew completely, just enough for removal of tube) and release tension clips from air filter box. Remove lid and tube and set aside
  • Remove two 12 mm bolts from air filter box base using the 3 & 6" extensions together. Pry gently from fender air box assembly. Remove from engine bay.
If everything worked, engine bay should look like this:

  • Looking from front of passenger side fender look for these fellas. Remove 2 12mm bolts taking care to not drop the gold wire guide from the rear coil assembly.

  • Remove the coil packs/plug boots by gently pulling on them. No need to disconnect them...move them out of your way.
  • Spark socket + 3" extension into well (no ratchet yet). Find the spark plug and get the socket seated. Then attach the rachet.
  • I required an extender here...the spark plugs were firmly attached to the heads and I could not break them free using my ratchet.
  • Once they are free and you can feel them nearing their release, unthread by hand.
  • Pop fresh plug (gapped to spec...see other threads) into spark plug socket. I did apply a very small amount of antiseize to the threads (small being one stripe perpindicular to the threads about 1/8" wide).
  • THREAD THE PLUGS INTO THE HEADS BY HAND
  • Once you feel the plugs seat on the head, tighten with the torque wrench ratchet to 15.2 ft lbs
  • Reverse the removal procedure...few things of note here:
  • Torque spec for coil pack bolts is 12 ft lbs.
  • I used dielectric grease on the plug boots. A very thin bead around the interior of the tip is fine. There was none from the factory...and I have no idea if that is spec.
  • Make sure the air filter box bottom seats on completely on the fender air box. I found the easiest way was hold the end that attaches to the snorkel while seating the airbox.
  • I used a bit of that same dielectric grease to ease the tube back on the intake/air filter box connections. Note that there are indentations on the tube where the bands should seat...use my pics as a reference if you can't see them.
Bam! Passenger side is done.

Drivers side:
  • Remove the battery by removing the wire guide, then remove the two 10mm nuts taking care to hold onto the tiedown rods. I held tension on the rod while removing the nut. Put those and the battery stay to the side. Next, loosen the 10mm nuts on the battery clamps and push those aside.
  • Remove battery
  • Remove battery tray.


Once they are gone, you can see the coil tops and you'll need to do the following.
  • Remove two 12mm bolts but don't pull the coil packs. Release the front coil pack from its wire by pressing the release tab and pulling it free. Then pull the coil and set it aside.
  • The back coil pack is a sumbagun to get out. The way I had to do it was pressing on the wire connector with a long thin screw driver while pushing the release tab.
  • NOTE If you have big hands...you'll have to release the large connectors in the foreground of this pic and remove the air pump. This area has 0 room to work in.
  • Once you have the back one disconnected you'll have to pull the coil free and rotate it to remove it. There is one way it goes in and out. Subaru...an extra inch here would have made all the difference.
  • Once they are out, you can do the same thing as the passenger side (find the plugs first and then attach the ratchet). In the case of the rear plug I had to do it in stages. First the socket, then the extension.
  • Remove the plugs (same process as passenger side)
  • Install the rear plug first ...yes, in stages.
  • Install front plug
  • Reinstall coil packs
  • Reattach wire connectors
  • Reinstall bolts.
  • Reverse removal procedure
And you're done. Took me about 30min for the passenger...1 hr for the driver side (only because I didn't try removing the wire first)
Overall its not as terrible as some cars I've worked on...some extra clearance and it wouldn't be nearly the bear it is. Hope this helps someone.


EDIT: If someone chimes in with something I missed or torque specs I'll add it in. Mods, feel free to do the same.
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Last edited by The Motel Fella; 11-08-2012 at 04:00 PM.
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:15 PM   #2
Uncle Scotty
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spark plugs get 15.2ft-lbs

the coil pack bolts get 11.7ft-lbs

and antiseize is NOT recommended or needed on the spark plug threads and may result in over torquing
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Old 04-18-2011, 06:43 AM   #3
The Motel Fella
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Scotty View Post
spark plugs get 15.2ft-lbs

the coil pack bolts get 11.7ft-lbs

and antiseize is NOT recommended or needed on the spark plug threads and may result in over torquing
Thanks U.S

What about the tune-up grease. I've done that since I started working on cars...but wasn't sure if subarus needed it.
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Old 04-18-2011, 02:02 PM   #4
Uncle Scotty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotelprowrx View Post
Thanks U.S

What about the tune-up grease. I've done that since I started working on cars...but wasn't sure if subarus needed it.
a bit of dielectric grease is great for the plug boots...in fact it is something that many dont do that would be far better than using anti-seize on the plugs
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Old 09-17-2011, 03:16 PM   #5
aestus_wrx
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2010 2.5i Gun Metal

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starting this job now, we'll see how many pizza & beer breaks it requires
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Old 09-17-2011, 03:44 PM   #6
cranberryumyum
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your engine bay is super clean!
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Old 09-17-2011, 08:16 PM   #7
aestus_wrx
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2010 2.5i Gun Metal

Default

Wound up working on three different cars while doing this job so I can't really comment on the amount of time it took, but this is an awesome DIY write up. It's a good opportunity to change your air filter and clean your mass air flow sensor, too. Only thing I would add is to disconnect the battery before touching any of the spark plugs, not waiting until you have to remove it for the driver's side. Thanks to hotelprowrx, this was a much needed how-to.
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Old 09-17-2011, 08:22 PM   #8
Uncle Scotty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aestus_wrx View Post
Wound up working on three different cars while doing this job so I can't really comment on the amount of time it took, but this is an awesome DIY write up. It's a good opportunity to change your air filter and clean your mass air flow sensor, too. Only thing I would add is to disconnect the battery before touching any of the spark plugs, not waiting until you have to remove it for the driver's side. Thanks to hotelprowrx, this was a much needed how-to.
spark plugs are unpowered with the engine off

but safest practice is disconnecting the battery before doing any underhood work....nobody does it but it is safest
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Old 11-22-2011, 02:06 AM   #9
Bready
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Did this today, took me about 40 mins on the Passenger Side and about 1 1/2 on the Driver's - it was getting dark too. For those who don't want to squeeze your hands on the Driver's side .... just remove the air pump, its a 3 10mm Nuts, 3 10mm philips bolts, spring clip on hose (connecting to the intercooler) and lastly a plug next to mentioned hose.

After removing the air pump, you'll have easier access to remove the coil packs and plugs.

Hotelprowrx, again... THANKS FOR THE WRITE UP!
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Old 11-22-2011, 02:45 PM   #10
moroz998
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thanks for the write up
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Old 11-16-2012, 09:35 PM   #11
kidofdoomz
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Obsidian Black Pearl

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resurrecting for some feedback... can anyone confirm these are the same steps for the STi? no surprises?
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Old 11-21-2012, 12:39 AM   #12
TripleEight
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Great write-up. Thanks for the help.
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Old 11-23-2012, 03:33 AM   #13
dagger108
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WRC Blue

Default Thanks for the write up

My '02 has well over 163k, so I'm transitioning into the DIY mode again - this was my first new car, so I had the dealer service it until recently.
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Old 11-26-2012, 04:57 PM   #14
mechatricity
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Jacking up the motor can assist greatly when doing plugs as well. Make sure to disconnect the correct things before raising the motor (see Motor mount replacement guides).
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Old 07-24-2013, 06:10 PM   #15
R7MR7M
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Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by mechatricity View Post
Jacking up the motor can assist greatly when doing plugs as well. Make sure to disconnect the correct things before raising the motor (see Motor mount replacement guides).
I was wondering about this but how much work would it be to jack up the motor? Does it actually save you time?
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Old 07-24-2013, 11:02 PM   #16
rdieder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R7MR7M View Post

I was wondering about this but how much work would it be to jack up the motor? Does it actually save you time?
Meh, that's more stuff you have to worry about if you forget to tighten bolts. Then probably have more noises to go along with the car.
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Old 07-30-2013, 11:14 PM   #17
duvalpaul
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This is an AWESOME post. I will be doing this in a week or so.
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:37 PM   #18
revolutionz
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Silver

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Sorry to bring this back up but, I was changing my spark plugs the other day and saw that the gold wire guide from the rear coil assembly wasn't there when i was changing my spark plugs. Is this a bad thing? I did your guide step by step and the change was a success. I just want to know if theres any possible effects of not having that gold wire guide on the rear coil assembly.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:31 PM   #19
mechatricity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by revolutionz View Post
Sorry to bring this back up but, I was changing my spark plugs the other day and saw that the gold wire guide from the rear coil assembly wasn't there when i was changing my spark plugs. Is this a bad thing? I did your guide step by step and the change was a success. I just want to know if theres any possible effects of not having that gold wire guide on the rear coil assembly.
It's fine, i ditched mine a long time ago. It just keeps the front O2 sensor wire off the header heat shield, but the sheath on that wire is extremely heat resistant.
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Old 09-14-2013, 08:57 PM   #20
speed455
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2004 WRX JBP

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Thanks Fella , im doing some plugs tomorrow.............
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Old 09-15-2013, 12:24 PM   #21
speed455
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2004 WRX JBP

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I bought Denso IK20 plugs for my 04 WRX , denso gap setting on their web site is .044 and thats the way the come . Do i need to gap these to 28-32........thanks
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Old 09-15-2013, 05:18 PM   #22
JonnyV2889
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speed455 View Post
I bought Denso IK20 plugs for my 04 WRX , denso gap setting on their web site is .044 and thats the way the come . Do i need to gap these to 28-32........thanks
The plugs you bought are probably for NA. Turbos should be gapped at .027-.032.
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Old 09-18-2013, 01:35 AM   #23
speed455
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonnyV2889 View Post
The plugs you bought are probably for NA. Turbos should be gapped at .027-.032.
These plugs are listed on Denso to fit the RS , Outbk , TR and WRX with a gap of .044 , im confused . I put them on @ .044 and runs fine . I would like to know from someone what the adverse effects would be having the larger gap................
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Old 09-24-2013, 10:19 PM   #24
06_subie
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Just replaced my plugs yesterday (first time doing it on a Subaru) it was no where near as hard as i thought it would be. I would have been done sooner if i had taken out the air pump but oh well lol. Good write up btw.
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Old 09-30-2013, 02:00 PM   #25
Kalion
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Just wanted to say thank you to the thread owner for posting those instructions and everyone else for their tips! Very helpful.
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