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How to: spark plugs and wires

patrick82

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1998 Explorer Eddie Bauer
I drive a 1998 Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer - and i have figured out that i need new spark plugs and wires. I took it to a shop i usually deal with and he gave me a price of 325.00 for this to be done. I went online and found parts for under 60.00 and figured labor can not be over 200.00... - my buddy is really good with cars and thinks he and i can do them..

1) does this forum have any info on spark plug wire replacement

Bosch Spark Plug Wire Set
Retail Price: $50.25
Your Price: $27.94
Quantity:

Part Number: W0133-1624943
Availability: In Stock
Condition: New

Shipping Options:
Ground, Overnight, 2 Day
 
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Joe Dirt

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Motorcraft Motorcraft... Stay away from Bosch. Plugs go Motorcraft or Autolite.

If you remove your front wheels and the rubber splash guards, the plugs will be staring you right in the face. Super easy on the V8... All you'll need is a socket wrench, extension, spark plug socket, and a swivel to make life easier. Replace each plug and wire one at a time to avoid getting the wires mixed up...

Here is the closeup view with the wheel/splash shield removed:

IMG_0426.jpg


IMG_0427.jpg


Wrenching:

IMG_0415.jpg
 
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patrick82

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Thanks i guess no way to do this without removing wheels??
you were a great help - now i see where this isnt a cheap job
 
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drothgeb

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97 XLT 4.0 SOHC 4x4
Removing the wheels takes less than five minutes. Just have your buddy watch and help when needed but really, its pretty easy.
 
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Joe Dirt

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Yeah- it's maybe a 2 on a scale of 1-10... Dive in- it's not bad at all. It might take a couple of hours the first time if you do it slowly , but I'd rather have the $200 at the end. :)
 
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swetrid

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5.0L is easier then the all of the v6 engines in my opinion.
 
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drothgeb

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The only one you'll have any trouble with is the rear-most passenger side plug. Still not too bad when you take off the tires.
 
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SoNic67

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2001 V8 (Eddie Bauer) AWD
Go for Autolite XP104 - there are the best for the 5.0L engine. Motorcraft ones are made by Autolite too, but they are cheaper versions...
 
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celly

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Go for Autolite XP104 - there are the best for the 5.0L engine. Motorcraft ones are made by Autolite too, but they are cheaper versions...

Confession: With all the ranting you do about how great these plugs are, I found a steal of a deal on eBay and decided to give them a go. I installed them two weeks ago. They replaced Motorcraft Double Plats (recommended spec) that were about a year old and were still at the 0.054 gap that they went into the engine in last summer.

Conclusion: I didn't notice one iota of a difference between the XP104 and a one year old set of Motocraft Double Plats (or whatever they call the standard spec Motorcrafts these days). In fact, I was just thinking today that my truck ran better with the Motorcrafts as I've had some starting issues lately (could be the winter gas which has been known to happen in my truck). I don't feel like swapping out plugs again because with the luck I've had lately (long story), something bad was bound to happen. I`ll leave the XP104s in there and use the Motocrafts as backups in case I need them.

Recommendation: As we all say, go with Autolite OR Motorcraft, but I think for the money, Motorcraft Double Plats (standard spec) are the best plugs out there, at least in the 5.0. I've also used Autolite Coppers last summer, but didn't give them a fair shake because I had other issues that I thought were plug related but turned out to be a header gasket issue. I pulled the plugs I bought in Kansas after a few thousand miles and they look as good as new.

I did a lot of reading up on these XP104 plugs and there was plenty of psychological improvements mentioned out there on the www. Keep in mind that people are usually replacing worn (and old) plugs so of course there will be a difference. I noticed nothing after swapping out one year old Motorcrafts.

The only difference I see between them is that the Autolite use some Iridium enhancement (not full Iridium like the NGK). All this translates into is a little bit more life. Iridium does not translate into performance benefit, just longevity. Plugs are cheap in the grand scheme of things and easy to change in the 5.0 so I doubt I'll keep them to the end of their useful life anyhow.

I definitely don`t see the Motocrafts as a step down, but equal to the XP104. Go for what is cheapest, or better yet, stick with the standard Double Plat equivalent in the Autolite line if they`re cheaper than Motorcraft.

Whomever mentioned that Autolite are made by Fram, get a clue. Fram, Autolite and Motorcraft are made by Honeywell. Autolite and Motorcraft plugs are probably made in the same facility with the latter being made to Ford spec. That`s not a bad thing.
 
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waskly

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5.0L is easier then the all of the v6 engines in my opinion.

i would take a 4.0 over any 5.0 any day.

i hate the shielded 5.0 wires.

5.0 2 hrs to change, if the shields are stuck removing them.

4.0 no matter what 30 min to route, install wires/plugs and make them look pretty.
 
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NHarris

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Agreed with walsky...
And my 05 looks fairly easy to change the plugs on.
 
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