What Are The Symptoms of a Bad Spark Plug?

Bad Spark Plug Symptoms

The spark plug may seem like a small and inconsequential part of your car’s mechanics, but that is not the case. Without your spark plugs, your car will never start. Spark plugs provide the spark that fuels the mixture that, in turn, powers your vehicle.

Spark plugs are put into use every time you turn your car on, meaning they must be durable and long-lasting.

If your spark plug does not ignite because it has not stopped working, your vehicle will not start. With this in mind, your spark plugs must be good if you plan on using your vehicle at all.

Though spark plugs are quite strong, they do not last forever. There may come a time when you have to replace your spark plugs. How, exactly, will you know when that is? Here we will go over a few ways to determine whether your spark plugs have gone bad and solutions on how to fix it.

Symptoms Of A Failed Spark Plug

There are a few different symptoms and signs that may appear if your spark plug is no longer usable. It can be challenging at first to determine the cause of any issue with your vehicle, so learning a few spark plug-related symptoms may be beneficial in more ways than one.

While these symptoms can indicate an issue with your spark plug, there are also other reasons that they may appear.

Rough At Rest

One sign of a bad spark plug is your car running rough while at rest. If your car is idling but still producing a heavy, rough ride, then your spark plugs may need changing. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to notice a change in your car’s idling state until it is very severe.

Consider listening to your car now, with good spark plugs, while idling. This will give you an idea of how your car should sound at rest, giving you a point of comparison should your vehicle begin to run roughly.

Drop-in Fuel Efficiency

If your car, seemingly suddenly, is getting worse gas mileage, you may need to check your spark plugs. A sign of failing spark plugs includes a drop in your gas mileage. For example, if your car once got 20 miles to the gallon and now you’re averaging 17, consider getting your spark plugs looked at by a professional.

Poor Acceleration

If your car is having issues with accelerating, spark plugs may be to blame. A sign of a failing spark plug is a decline in the acceleration of your car. If you have noticed a reduced acceleration speed in your vehicle, your spark plugs may be to blame.

You may notice a gradual decline in your car’s acceleration abilities, making it difficult to determine that something is wrong. Paying attention to your car’s regular habits and ways of driving can help you determine when there is an issue afoot.

Trouble Starting Your Vehicle

Another sign that your car may have a bad spark plug is if you have trouble starting it. There are a few other reasons your car may not start, but an issue with your spark plugs may be the culprit. Your car engine ignites when the spark plugs create their spark – if the plugs are bad, that spark never comes, meaning your car never turns on.

Remember This

Any of these issues with your vehicle does not necessarily mean that your spark plugs have already failed. There are many reasons your car may have problems other than bad spark plugs.

If you are unsure what the issue may be with your car, always take it to a professional. Your car cannot be diagnosed online or by you if you are not a certified mechanic. Getting a professional opinion is the best option when you experience any issues with your vehicle.

What To Do When You Have A Bad Spark Plug

As mentioned, the easiest and most efficient option is to get your vehicle to a mechanic ASAP. Though it may save you time, it may not save you money. There are ways for non-mechanics to change their spark plugs at home.

If you wish to learn, consider looking up a tutorial on how to fix the issue. Many online resources help car owners repair their broken vehicles.

Ensuring you fix or replace your spark plugs as soon as possible is essential in prolonging the life of your vehicle. If you leave your bad spark plugs untreated, your car will not fare well. While having your spark plugs changed will not run you an insane amount of money, leaving them untreated may cause further issues that will cost you more.

Take Care of Your Car

You, most likely, spend a lot of time inside your car, and it should be something you take good care of. Often our car is our means of transportation to work and to buy necessities. It is something you cannot live without.

Doing regular maintenance on your vehicle allows you to stay up to date with any issues and get on top of them before they become dangerous. It ensures you don’t miss any severe faults with your car and saves you money in the long run. It also guarantees that you will not be left without a means of transportation.

Finding a mechanic you trust and enjoy bringing your car to is vital in having a long-lasting, healthy vehicle. It can be tedious and expensive to bring your car to a mechanic that cares more about money than the way your vehicle operates. Having an experienced mechanic allows you to rest easy, knowing you and your vehicle are in good hands.

Brett Gordon

The engine behind editing at DigMyRide and the brains behind its build. During the day, Brett is a thirty-something dude from SoCal climbing the corporate ladder, but by night, he spends his time contributing to the online world of automotive tech & trends.