Malibu, Malibu MAXX 2006-2008

Spark Plugs

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Inspection & Gapping



  1. Inspect the terminal post for damage.
  2.  
  3. Inspect for a bent or broken terminal post.
  4.  
  5. Test for a loose terminal post by twisting and pulling the post. The terminal post should NOT move.
  6.  
  7. Inspect the insulator for flashover or carbon tracking, soot. This is caused by the electrical charge traveling across the insulator between the terminal post and ground.
  8.  
  9. Inspect the spark plug boot for damage.
  10.  
  11. Inspect the spark plug recess area of the cylinder head for moisture, such as oil, coolant, or water. A spark plug boot that is saturated causes arcing to ground.
  12.  
  13. Inspect the insulator for cracks. All or part of the electrical charge may arc through the crack instead of the electrodes.
  14.  
  15. Inspect for evidence of improper arcing.
  16.  
  17. Measure the gap between the center electrode and the side electrode terminals. An excessively wide electrode gap can prevent correct spark plug operation.
  18.  
  19. Inspect for the correct spark plug torque. Insufficient torque can prevent correct spark plug operation. An over-torqued spark plug causes the insulator to crack.
  20.  
  21. Inspect for signs of tracking that occurred near the insulator tip instead of the center electrode.
  22.  
  23. Inspect for a broken or worn side electrode.
  24.  
  25. Inspect for a broken, worn, or loose center electrode by shaking the spark plug.
  26.  
  27. A rattling sound indicates internal damage.
  28.  
  29. A loose center electrode reduces the spark intensity.
  30.  
  31. Inspect for bridged electrodes. Deposits on the electrodes reduce or eliminates the gap.
  32.  
  33. Inspect for worn or missing platinum pads on the electrodes if equipped.
  34.  
  35. Inspect for excess fouling.
  36.  
  37. Inspect the spark plug recess area of the cylinder head for debris. Dirty or damaged threads can cause the spark plug not to seat correctly during installation.
  38.  
  39. Normal operation--Brown to grayish-tan with small amounts of white powdery deposits are normal combustion by-products from fuels with additives.
  40.  
  41. Carbon fouled, Dry, fluffy, black carbon, or soot caused by the following conditions:

    Rich fuel mixtures
     
    Leaking fuel injectors
     
    Excessive fuel pressure
     
    Restricted air filter element
     
    Incorrect combustion
     
    Reduced ignition system voltage output
     
    Weak coils
     
    Worn ignition wires
     
    Incorrect spark plug gap
     

  42.  
  43. Excessive idling or slow speeds under light loads can keep spark plug temperatures so low that normal combustion deposits may not burn off.
  44.  
  45. Deposit fouling: Oil, coolant, or additives that include substances such as silicone, very white coating, reduces the spark intensity. Most powdery deposits will not affect spark intensity unless they form into a glazing over the electrode.
  46.  

Removal & Installation



2.2L Engine
  1. Observe the following service precautions:

    Allow the engine to cool before removing the spark plugs. Attempting to remove spark plugs from a hot engine can cause the spark plugs to seize. This can damage the cylinder head threads.
     
    Clean the spark plug recess area before removing the spark plug. Failure to do so can result in engine damage due to dirt or foreign material entering the cylinder head, or in contamination of the cylinder head threads. Contaminated threads may prevent proper seating of the new spark plug.
     
    Use only the spark plugs specified for use in the vehicle. Do not install spark plugs that are either hotter or colder than those specified for the vehicle. Installing spark plugs of another type can severely damage the engine.
     

  2.  
  3. Turn the ignition OFF .
  4.  
  5. Disconnect the Electronic Ignition (EI) module harness connector.
  6.  
  7. Remove the spark plugs using a 5 / 8  inch spark plug socket.
  8.  

To install:


WARNING
Do not coat spark plug threads with anti-seize compound. If anti-seize compound is used and spark plugs are over-torqued, damage to the cylinder head threads may result.

  1. Inspect the gap on the new spark plugs, re-gap the plugs as required. The spark plug gap specification is 42 inch. (1.0 mm).
  2.  
  3. Install the spark plugs and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Apply dielectric compound to the spark plug boots and make sure no corrosion is present.
  6.  
  7. Install the ignition coil housing to cam cover and attachment bolts.
  8.  
  9. Tighten the ignition coil housing bolts to 89 inch. lbs. (10 Nm).
  10.  
  11. Connect the EI module harness connector. Push in until a click is heard and pull back to confirm a positive engagement.
  12.  

  1. Observe the following service precautions:

    Allow the engine to cool before removing the spark plugs. Attempting to remove spark plugs from a hot engine can cause the spark plugs to seize. This can damage the cylinder head threads.
     
    Clean the spark plug recess area before removing the spark plug. Failure to do so can result in engine damage due to dirt or foreign material entering the cylinder head, or in contamination of the cylinder head threads. Contaminated threads may prevent proper seating of the new spark plug.
     
    Use only the spark plugs specified for use in the vehicle. Do not install spark plugs that are either hotter or colder than those specified for the vehicle. Installing spark plugs of another type can severely damage the engine.
     

  2.  
  3. Disconnect the engine wiring harness electrical connectors from the ignition coils.
  4.  
  5. Remove the ignition coil bolts.
  6.  
  7. Remove the ignition coils.
  8.  
  9. Remove the spark plugs.
  10.  

To install:


WARNING
Do not coat spark plug threads with anti-seize compound. If anti-seize compound is used and spark plugs are over-torqued, damage to the cylinder head threads may result.

  1. Inspect the gap on the new spark plugs, re-gap the plugs as required. The spark plug gap specification is 45 inch. (1.1 mm).
  2.  
  3. Install the spark plugs and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the ignition coils.
  6.  
  7. Install the ignition coil bolts and tighten to 89 inch lbs. (10 Nm).
  8.  
  9. Connect the engine wiring harness electrical connectors to the ignition coils.
  10.  

3.5L Engine
  1. Observe the following service precautions:

    Allow the engine to cool before removing the spark plugs. Attempting to remove spark plugs from a hot engine can cause the spark plugs to seize. This can damage the cylinder head threads.
     
    Clean the spark plug recess area before removing the spark plug. Failure to do so can result in engine damage due to dirt or foreign material entering the cylinder head, or in contamination of the cylinder head threads. Contaminated threads may prevent proper seating of the new spark plug.
     
    Use only the spark plugs specified for use in the vehicle. Do not install spark plugs that are either hotter or colder than those specified for the vehicle. Installing spark plugs of another type can severely damage the engine.
     

  2.  
  3. Remove the intake manifold cover, if required.
  4.  
  5. Remove the air cleaner duct, if required.
  6.  
  7. Remove the left side spark plug wires from the spark plugs, if required.
  8.  
  9. Remove the right side spark plug wires from the spark plugs, if required.
  10.  
  11. Remove the spark plugs from the engine.
  12.  

To install:

  1. Inspect the gap on the new spark plugs, re-gap the plugs as required.
  2.  
  3. The spark plug gap specification is as follows:

    2005-06 3.5L engines 60 inch. (1.52 mm).
     
    2007-08 3.5L engines 40 inch. (1.02 mm).
     

  4.  
  5. Install the spark plugs and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  6.  
  7. Install the right side spark plug wires to the spark plugs, if required.
  8.  
  9. Install the left side spark plug wires to the spark plugs, if required.
  10.  
  11. Install the air cleaner duct, if required.
  12.  
  13. Install the intake manifold cover, if required.
  14.  

3.9L Engine
  1. Observe the following service precautions:

    Allow the engine to cool before removing the spark plugs. Attempting to remove spark plugs from a hot engine can cause the spark plugs to seize. This can damage the cylinder head threads.
     
    Clean the spark plug recess area before removing the spark plug. Failure to do so can result in engine damage due to dirt or foreign material entering the cylinder head, or in contamination of the cylinder head threads. Contaminated threads may prevent proper seating of the new spark plug.
     
    Use only the spark plugs specified for use in the vehicle. Do not install spark plugs that are either hotter or colder than those specified for the vehicle. Installing spark plugs of another type can severely damage the engine.
     

  2.  
  3. Remove the intake manifold cover, if required.
  4.  
  5. Remove the air cleaner duct, if required.
  6.  
  7. Remove the left side spark plug wires from the spark plugs, if required.
  8.  
  9. Remove the right side spark plug wires from the spark plugs, if required.
  10.  
  11. Remove the spark plugs from the engine.
  12.  

To install:

  1. Inspect the gap on the new spark plugs, re-gap the plugs as required. The spark plug gap specification is 40 inch. (1.02 mm).
  2.  
  3. Install the spark plugs and tighten to 15 ft. lbs. (20 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the right side spark plug wires to the spark plugs, if required.
  6.  
  7. Install the left side spark plug wires to the spark plugs, if required.
  8.  
  9. Install the air cleaner duct, if required.
  10.  
  11. Install the intake manifold cover, if required.
  12.  

 
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