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Eco-Boost and Spark Plugs

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Old 08-13-2015, 04:43 PM   #1
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Default Eco-Boost and Spark Plugs

my 2012 eco-boost has just over 110K miles on it now. While accelerating hard I had a few instances where it was mis-firing and I assumed I had some condensation build up in the inter-cooler. One instance was so bad that the check engine light came on so I figured I'd head to the dealer before my extended warranty was up (125K). I got a call from the dealer stating that there were 3 issues in the motor:
1. dirty air filter (I called BS on this as I only had 10K miles on my napa gold filter and I'm sure it's fine)
2. bad spark plugs
3. bad plug boots

through a series of mix ups with the dealer, the plugs and boots were changed prior to me picking up the truck, and I got to have a long discussion with the service manager who also owns an F150 with the EB. He shared with me that most trucks like mine are not making it past 30-40K miles on a set of spark plugs. The boost of the engine is literally killing the plugs.

What do you guys think about that statement?


I will say this: following my new plugs and boots, my mileage went up by 3 mpg, from 18->21.

When I asked the service manager why my stock setup lasted as long as it did, he was unsure. I suspect it's that I drive 90% highway and always run premium gas so there is less detonation, and I baby the gas pedal. But if it's true that this motor needs frequent plug replacement, it would explain a lot of the engine related stutter and rough idle issues everyone seems to face.
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Old 08-13-2015, 04:57 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Honey Badger View Post
my 2012 eco-boost has just over 110K miles on it now. While accelerating hard I had a few instances where it was mis-firing and I assumed I had some condensation build up in the inter-cooler. One instance was so bad that the check engine light came on so I figured I'd head to the dealer before my extended warranty was up (125K). I got a call from the dealer stating that there were 3 issues in the motor:
1. dirty air filter (I called BS on this as I only had 10K miles on my napa gold filter and I'm sure it's fine)
2. bad spark plugs
3. bad plug boots

through a series of mix ups with the dealer, the plugs and boots were changed prior to me picking up the truck, and I got to have a long discussion with the service manager who also owns an F150 with the EB. He shared with me that most trucks like mine are not making it past 30-40K miles on a set of spark plugs. The boost of the engine is literally killing the plugs.

What do you guys think about that statement?


I will say this: following my new plugs and boots, my mileage went up by 3 mpg, from 18->21.

When I asked the service manager why my stock setup lasted as long as it did, he was unsure. I suspect it's that I drive 90% highway and always run premium gas so there is less detonation, and I baby the gas pedal. But if it's true that this motor needs frequent plug replacement, it would explain a lot of the engine related stutter and rough idle issues everyone seems to face.

Yup, every 30-40k miles is about right. Around 20-30 if running a tune is a good idea.
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Old 08-13-2015, 06:57 PM   #3
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Is that just how it is with turbo engines or is this specific to the Ecoboost? I am still learning and trying to decide which route to go used.
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Old 08-13-2015, 08:08 PM   #4
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Is that just how it is with turbo engines or is this specific to the Ecoboost? I am still learning and trying to decide which route to go used.
From my understanding it's how it is with turbo vehicles
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Old 08-13-2015, 09:23 PM   #5
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Higher the boost, faster it will eat them up. Early EB's were not gapped right from the factory. Ford in their infinite wisdom, put 100k maintenance intervals in the manuals and service reps went by it initially. Once the gap error and printing error was discovered, most are changing them correctly.

I've had, drive, worked on, and built boosted engines almost 20 years now. They just are not kind to spark plugs. Consider yourself VERY lucky you got as far as you did. My truck is tuned with 40k miles and I"m on my 3rd set of plugs now. Thankfully they can be bought for $30 bucks and swapped in about 30 minutes and are already pre-gapped correctly so its a quick and easy bit of maintenance.
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Old 08-13-2015, 10:07 PM   #6
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I just changed mine this morning gapped down to .028". The last set only had 13K miles on them bit I was getting a hot idle stumble and mine is a 2011 so original plugs were platnium and they we're 100% shot at 29k miles. The gaps we're high 37 to 40 thou. 2 out of 6 were carbon tracked and burnt porcelain.


Second set was the Sp534 plugs gap was set at 31 to 32 thou. Gap didn't open Up over the 13k. Didn't change the coil boots as I didn't know about changing them after signs of carbon tracking.

3rd set went in sp534 gap set at 28 thou. Seems to have cleared up hot idle stumble and increased mileage on first 200 km trip. Avg was 19.5 MPG. Oh and I spent the $3 each on new coil boots for this change.

So only 42k miles on my truck and 3rd set of plugs. I think you're **** lucky you did not have a flashing check engine everytime you hit the gas hard.
I would never reccomend any more than 20k miles on a set and I def rec taking the gap down from the spec d 31-32 to 28 thou.
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Old 08-13-2015, 10:12 PM   #7
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I think the dealer is partially full of crap. Plugs aren't worhkess after 40k miles on a stock truck. However, at 40k miles many may benefit from new or regapped plugs based on my experience and reading others experiences here.
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Old 08-13-2015, 10:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zx12-iowa View Post
I think the dealer is partially full of crap. Plugs aren't worhkess after 40k miles on a stock truck. However, at 40k miles many may benefit from new or regapped plugs based on my experience and reading others experiences here.
Did you not just read what I posted?

The 2011 and 2012 were originally spec'd with a platinum plug and a really wide gap. The 13 and 14 came with the sp534 which are iridium and a tighter gap I can see that 40k for those trucks bit not the 11/12's.
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Old 08-16-2015, 01:39 AM   #9
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My plugs were toast at just over 20K. I ran them on a tuned engine. What a difference a new set of plugs made!
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Old 08-18-2015, 10:26 PM   #10
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I only have 11K on my truck and the 5* 91 Perf/Tow tune is causing a stutter at 60 MPH going up a grade on CC. I already gapped them at 028, which made no difference. I pulled the tune, and on stock, no stutter, currently running the 91 Eco tune, no stutter detected yet, but man what a difference, feels like I am driving a Prius, just wish it got Prius MPG. So far stock is getting me the best MPG at 21, the Perf/tow got me 20, and I drove it no different. Will see how it does on the 91 Eco, if MPG goes up over 21, then I will keep it, but if not, then will try the 87 Perf/tow and see if I still get stutter. In the mean time, going to order a new set of plugs, and try those under the 91 Perf and see if it makes a difference.

Does anyone know, is it normal to see some brown schmuck on the porcelain above the metal body? There was residue on most of the plugs there.
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