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Don't Panic! A Broken Spark Plug May Not Be the End of the World
Almost nothing is as dreaded to mechanics as a spark plug breaking apart while still tightly in its socket. It's guaranteed to spike your stress levels, time spent on the project and, without the right tools, could mean pulling off the head. This is when a quality extractor can change a 10-hour job to 30 minutes, dramatically reduce your time spent even when things continue to go wrong (they usually will). AutoZone carries the best spark plug extractors for cars and trucks, because we know from personal experience how professional tools can make life much happier.

Spark Plugs Break for a Variety of Reasons
Having a plug break while trying to remove it is a somewhat common problem when dealing with certain vehicles, especially if it has been sitting for an extended period. They are built basically like a hollow bolt, and if the plug has been rust-frozen, installed with excessive force or cross-threaded, there's an unfortunately high chance of the plug breaking during extraction. Dirty threads on the spark plug can also lead to it breaking. Often, the problem will be caused by someone else, but (as usual) you're the one who gets to fix it. We work directly with precision tool-makers to offer high quality while maintaining the lowest possible prices on spark plug extractors.

How to Deal With It
Most spark plug extractors are easy to use for relatively experienced, amateur mechanics. There are a few different methods for removing them, depending on the type of tool and vehicle. The extractor often includes high-quality steel parts and may have different pushers or extra-long taps. All extractors are designed with professional-grade engineering to make removal as easy as possible. There are two basic types of bits, also called easy-out bit: the spiral-cut and the square-cut. Most, but not all, experts tend to recommend the square-cut bit, as a spiral-cut can cause the shell remaining in the cylinder head to expand, locking it in even tighter. The square-cut tends to dig in without causing as much expansion. Make sure the engine is cold, and try to position the engine (if practicable) so that the piston below the broken plug is bottom dead-center. Soak it in a penetrating oil and let it sit awhile, ideally overnight. You might also tap the cylinder around the broken plug to increase the oil's penetration. Using the right-size bit and a ratchet, apply steady pressure counterclockwise, gradually increasing torque until it breaks loose. Once the broken plug is out, consider turning over the engine to blow out shavings before they get caught in the valves

Finding the Right Part
When a spark plug breaks, your next words (after a choice few) will likely be, “are there spark plug extractors near me?” AutoZone has over 6,000 locations for situations just like this. The last thing you need when it happens to you is to drive all over town, trying to find anything that will work. We built our business catering to professional mechanics, and we want everybody to have the same benefits.

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