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Old 02-27-2012, 07:02 PM   #1
sflint50
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Default 13.5 ftlbs close enough on my plugs?

For some reason, I had in my head that the torque setting on my spark plugs was between 12 and 15 ftlbs torque. (2002 WRX wagon) Well I figured I'd hit it in the middle at 13.5. My manual is on my computer whose battery went dead at the time, not to mention I was coming down with the flu. I rechecked when I got home, and the manual says 15ftlbs. Unabomber says 15-19....so, is 13.5 close enough or should I go back in and torque em down some more?
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:24 PM   #2
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NGK's recommendation for M14 plugs is 25 to 30 n-m (18 to 22 ftlb). You are way below this recommendation, so I would at least get it up to factory spec. In other words, go back in and do it again.
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Old 02-27-2012, 08:56 PM   #3
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Do I need to back it all the way out or can I just put the torque wrench on it at the new setting?
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:23 PM   #4
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Who the hell uses a torque wrench on spark plugs?
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat
Who the hell uses a torque wrench on spark plugs?
If you want to do it right, use torque wrench to spec. Simple as that.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Who the hell uses a torque wrench on spark plugs?
I do...and I use 190in-lbs.....been doing this for years and years

and ya know what???

I have NEVER had any issue with removing them or having one back out...or stripping threads out

and never used anti-seize either

wonder why

doh....torque wrench
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smeerone View Post
If you want to do it right, use torque wrench to spec. Simple as that.
hey...WAIT!!!!

he's a tech at a subaru dealer
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:31 PM   #8
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:36 PM   #9
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I suppose you torque the milk jug's lid to spec when you put it away too?

Nobody uses torque wrenches for oil pan drain bolts, spark plugs, valve covers, engine covers, radiator fan bolts, or 90% of the other fasteners in a production shop.

Laugh all you want, if you have half a brain you don't need a torque wrench to tell you.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:38 PM   #10
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+1 on torque wrench. Stripping left me feeling empty and used.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:38 PM   #11
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If' you're a ham-fisted moron, it's best to grab the wrench to tell you that you've reached the limit of a crush washer's crush.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:51 PM   #12
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because every dealer tech uses a torque wrench on EVERY fastener...

spark plugs? Get snug, then another 1/2 turn and be done. I too don't use anti-seize and haven't had any issues with plugs on any vehicle.
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Old 02-27-2012, 11:44 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat
I suppose you torque the milk jug's lid to spec when you put it away too?

Nobody uses torque wrenches for oil pan drain bolts, spark plugs, valve covers, engine covers, radiator fan bolts, or 90% of the other fasteners in a production shop.

Laugh all you want, if you have half a brain you don't need a torque wrench to tell you.
To each his own, it certainly can't hurt.
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Old 02-28-2012, 12:01 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
I suppose you torque the milk jug's lid to spec when you put it away too?

Nobody uses torque wrenches for oil pan drain bolts, spark plugs, valve covers, engine covers, radiator fan bolts, or 90% of the other fasteners in a production shop.

Laugh all you want, if you have half a brain you don't need a torque wrench to tell you.
well...as an FAA licensed A&P aircraft mechanic who has worked for a major airline....I can say that I work to a higher standard......the inspector standing there watching what you are doing wont let you off without doing it right

and that is just ONE thing that separates some of us from some of the others and why some of us dont wrench cars for a living
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Old 02-28-2012, 12:20 AM   #15
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:shrug:

The airlines have a liability factor, which is why they don't allow their techs to use their brains and muscle memory to accomplish menial tasks.
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Old 02-28-2012, 10:46 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
If' you're a ham-fisted moron, it's best to grab the wrench to tell you that you've reached the limit of a crush washer's crush.
That's funny considering the number one reason we get spark plugs back that have caused engine failure, or some other issue, is due to being under-torqued. I didn't use a torque wrench either until I started working at NGK and got to see first hand all the issues not torquing the plugs causes. You use a torque wrench for head bolts, right? Why? The same reasoning can be applied to spark plugs.

We have a lot of issues at the OEM's (Ford, GM, and Chrysler) b/c a lot of their dyno technicians don't use torque wrenches, so don't tell me I'm a ham-fisted moron for using a torque wrench.

Torque wrench is the best option. If you don't have one, use the angular tightening method, so at least you know the plugs are properly tightened.
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Old 02-28-2012, 11:20 PM   #17
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Clearly the manufacturers are employing ham-fisted morons in their assembly lines. Yay UAW!

So it's an improperly torqued spark plug that causes Triton motors to chew up and spit out the plugs tens of thousands of miles down the road, and not a design flaw?

I do use a torque wrench for head bolts - but I don't use a torque wrench for the bolts that hold the washer bottle in. Spark plugs rank somewhere between. If you can't get it right without a torque wrench, feel free to use one.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:04 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Clearly the manufacturers are employing ham-fisted morons in their assembly lines. Yay UAW!

So it's an improperly torqued spark plug that causes Triton motors to chew up and spit out the plugs tens of thousands of miles down the road, and not a design flaw?

I do use a torque wrench for head bolts - but I don't use a torque wrench for the bolts that hold the washer bottle in. Spark plugs rank somewhere between. If you can't get it right without a torque wrench, feel free to use one.
No, it's because those are Champion spark plugs.

Also, you should realize that not everyone on this board is a professional like you. Some of them replace spark plugs every five years or so, not every five minutes. It would be like me calling you a ham-fisted idiot b/c you don't know how to properly paramaterize the SSQ in the BSQ for use in the POI on our $1M engine dynamometer, cuz it's so easy.
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Old 02-29-2012, 04:17 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
If' you're a ham-fisted moron, it's best to grab the wrench to tell you that you've reached the limit of a crush washer's crush.
I'll go ahead and admit that I'm one of those ham-fisted morons .
That's why my first mod on my wife's Forester was to replace the oil drain plug with a Fumoto valve.
I wish I knew about Fumoto valves when I bought my motorcycle; 3 years ago I ended up destroying the aluminum threads of the drain hole while attempting to *remove* the drain bolt.
I had more than likely over-torqued that bolt so bad that most of the threads came away with it.
So, because it looks like I don't have any muscle memory and because I'm not able to tell when things will break until they actually do, I have been taking precautions to avoid trouble.
For sparks plugs, because I can't operate any of my torque wrenches in the tight spaces of the Subaru engine bay, I get the plugs just "snug", then I go an extra half turn or 3/4 of a turn. Then I try resisting the urge to further torque them to death .
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Old 02-29-2012, 04:43 PM   #20
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Torque wrench for me on stuff like spark plugs, because I like the piece of mind of knowing it's to spec...at anyrate, I went back in and torqued em down to my service manual spec.

For the constructive replies, I say thank you!
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Old 02-29-2012, 11:32 PM   #21
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No, it's because those are Champion spark plugs.

Also, you should realize that not everyone on this board is a professional like you. Some of them replace spark plugs every five years or so, not every five minutes. It would be like me calling you a ham-fisted idiot b/c you don't know how to properly paramaterize the SSQ in the BSQ for use in the POI on our $1M engine dynamometer, cuz it's so easy.

You see though, there's a difference.

Any teenage kid should be able to change the spark plugs in their dad's car - my first was our 89 Caravan. No torque wrench needed.

That **** you said is part of a skilled position. I'm going to assume you had some sort of legitimate training prior to jumping in with both feet.

"Factory trained" means we went to a training center for 1, 2, or 3 days for a class where we sit, watch a powerpoint and then go follow the procedures on engines/trannies/etc that have been poked more times than a Bangkok whore.

Sadly, the training is usually stuff we hardly ever use, and most will forget before they ever do have to use it.

Don't get me wrong, I always come away from class having learned something, but it's a whole lot of figuring it out how to do it ourselves and an expectation that we're all electrical/mechanical engineers.
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