Use WD-40 if your spark plugs have dirt buildup. Start with turning off the car’s engine and then spray the WD-40 on a clean and soft cloth and wipe or spray directly on the spark plug wires and its distributor cap.
What Are Spark Plugs?
Spark plugs are part of the ignition system where the electrode voltage will travel from the top to its bottom part.
This voltage will “jump” across the spark plug gap, the distance between the central and ground electrode.
You can refer to what happens in voltage as rubbing your feet on the carpet, then touching the doorknob, and there you can see a visible spark.
The spark will ignite the air-fuel mixture inside the combustion chamber, causing a big explosion that leads to the power stroke of your engine and eventually to the wheels.
Generally, the distance or the gap size between the central and the ground electrode varies.
The size of the spark plug gap is essential in determining if the gap would be enough to produce a spark in igniting the air-fuel mixture.
If the size of the gap is too small, the sparks produced are likely to be weak. Whereas if the size is too large, the engine may not run.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes spark plugs dirty?
Oil from the combustion chamber may flow into the spark plugs, if neglected, would further accumulate inside, reducing your car’s performance.
The spark plug transports the electric current from the ignition system to the combustion chamber to ignite the compressed air-fuel mixture as an electric spark.
If the oil gets leaked into the combustion chamber, it may accumulate on the tip of the spark plugs.
Normally, the carbon buildup on the spark plug may be caused by:
- Dirty air filter
- A large amount of air-fuel mixture
- Leaving your car idle for too long
- Too much driving at low speeds
Leaving your spark plugs dirty can lead to your car having poor acceleration, reduced gas mileage,
engine misfires and triggers your check engine light.
Does my spark plug need cleaning or replacement?
To tell whether your spark plug needs cleaning or replacement, check for damages on each part after cleaning the spark plug from carbon deposits.
Inspect for the following to see if the spark plug would need a replacement:
- If the carbon deposits don’t come off even after scraping or cleaning them
- There are cracks in any part of the plug
- Dents and melted parts on the metal of the electrodes
Is WD-40 safe on the skin?
No, WD-40 exposure to your skin is not safe. WD-40 can cause skin irritation, so it would be safe to wear gloves whenever you use one.
How to tell if WD-40 is fake?
Beware of counterfeited WD-40 products from China with slightly smaller 350 ml cans, far from the original 382 mL cans.
You can also tell that it is fake if the description in the cans is only in Chinese characters, instead of the description being both in English and Chinese.
What are the other uses of WD-40?
WD-40 is not just used for car engines but is also effective in using in your household or other utilities, especially in cleaning or removing something.
You can use WD-40 on the following:
- Removing stickers
- Cleaning your golf clubs
- Erases the crayon drawings on the walls
- Loosen the ring stuck on your finger
- Removes carpet stains
- Protect kitchen utensils from rust
- Use it to clean your car windscreen
- Cleaning the fridge
- Removing fingerprints
- Clean leather furniture
- To remove graffiti, paint, and superglue
- Fix the door squeaks
- Polishing coins and silver jewelry
- Removing chewing gum on your hair