What are the Usual Car Usage Habits that Result to Spark Plug Failures?

It is not enough that you know how to drive. If you are a fresh car owner, you should know how to take good care of your vehicle and maintain it. This is to keep your vehicle in good condition while you use it. Plus, it is an excellent habit for your safety on the road. 

In this sense, it is very beneficial if you will check some of the care tips that we have at CarCody.com. It is jampacked with tips and guides that will help even those with no basic knowledge about how vehicles work. 

Thus, in this series, we will check the usual car usage habits that result in spark plug failures. Read this until the very end because you might be doing something in your car that is already affecting it. 

Spark Plugs and their purpose

We might be talking about spark plugs, but do you know what they are? They are small in size, and you might not notice them at just a glance. Sometimes it is beneath the engine, depending on the car’s engine structure. 

Their sole purpose is to start the spark that will light up the electricity in your car. Imagine that it is your box of the match in the middle of the jungle. Without it, you will freeze to death. That is how vital these spark plugs are. 

Contributors to spark plug failures

Here are some of the best reasons why your spark plugs fail.

Oil Leakage in the Combustion Chamber

If the oil leaks to the combustion chamber, it will result in the spark plugs becoming oily and dirty. If that happens, you will notice immediately that your car will have difficulty starting up. It is primarily a result of the loosening of pistons due to their lifespan. If the piston ring loses its power to seal the oil, it will leak. 

One .major reason why the piston ring loses its grip is its age. As time passes by, it wears out. So make sure to check it quarterly or annually and have them repaired or replaced if you see any slight degradation from it. 


Typically, overheating happens if there is a malfunction in the engine’s cooling system. Or it can be because of pre-ignition. The pre-ignition results in the combustion chamber building heat, making the spark plugs fail to spark. If this continuously happens, your spark plugs electrode will wear out quickly. 

For your car to avoid overheating, follow these simple tips:

  • Avoid parking in areas with direct exposure to sunlight. Always look for a shade. 
  • If it is not avoidable to park in shadeless areas, make sure to use car window shades or windshield shades. 
  • You can also try tinting your windows. 
  • To avoid locking too much heat inside, you can open your car windows slightly. Just enough to make sure that air will be able to circulate. But not enough for burglars to open up your windows. 
  • You can also turn on the air floor vents. 
  • Another thing is you can try using fresh air settings compared to recirculating your car’s air conditioner. 
  • Always have an eye on your car temperature gauge. 
  • To cool down the engine, you turn on the heat. 

Carbon Buildup

You will know that there is carbon buildup if your spark plugs have black dry soot surrounding them. This buildup decreases the life span of the spark plug and will cause the spark plug to have a hard time starting. Check out some of the top reasons as to why it happens:

  • Dirty air filter – you can clean this with a dry cloth. But make sure not to drop any debris in the engine. It might end up in the combustion chamber leading to other problems. 
  • Always driving at low speeds – Well, what is why you wanted to have a car? To be at your destination faster. So why settle for a 20 or 40 kilometer per hour speed if you can go for sixty and above. Please don’t shy away from that pedal but do it with lots of care. 
  • Rich in fuel/air mixture
  • Fuel injectors are dirty.
  • Leaving the car idle for too long

The gap in sparkplugs is inaccurate.

If the spark plugs have inaccurate gaps, they will have difficulty staring up. Just imagine yourself reaching for something, and you are sitting comfortably. But you think you can reach it already, but there are just some inches that hinder you from getting it. Do you imagine the cramps that you will get? That is the same thing as the spark plugs. 

Due to that, it will lessen the health and lifespan of the spark plugs than their original intended lives [pan. Plus, you will always have that problem starting up. That is a hassle when you are in a hurry. 

The shape of the electrodes is different.

Each car needs two or more spark plugs, depending on the setup of the engine. Some may require four, and some are six. IF that is the case, they need to be identical at all times. But there are times that you only need to replace one. In that sense, make sure that the replacement part is the same as the others. 

If you put a spark plug with the slightest difference, the spark plug may misfire. 


The spark plug is just a tiny part of the totality of your car. So there are a lot of instances that it is one of the neglected items when checking your vehicle well being. That is another set of reasons why we created this kind of guide for you to be aware of how important this is. Small things have a significant impact on the totality of something. 

Now that you know the reasons why your spark plugs fail, we hope that you will be more careful and aware of the symptoms it results in. If you want to add any other items or things to the list, feel free to ping us. Let us create a community of car enthusiasts that look out for each other. Safe journeys, everyone!

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