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Old 05-21-2014
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Spark Plug Trouble 2.3L

Just got around doing my first spark plug and wires change on my 04 XLT.

#1 plug was fine
#2 plug had oil in the well, but came out ok.
#3 plug would not come out no matter what. It seemed like it was way deeper in the well.
#4 was fine after removing the coil, etc.

Is there a special tool or a specific way of going about removing spark plug #3 on these cars?
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  #2  
Old 05-21-2014
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for the record..

2.3L automatic, with no frills..
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Old 05-22-2014
Scy Scy is offline
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I have the same engine and, no, the #3 spark plug is the same as the rest. I did have a bit of trouble with #4 on mine because they were original so a bit of corrosion had built up on the threads.
Your pic doesn't look too bad. Maybe running a little rich.
Give her another try, maybe she is just being stubborn.
Here is a visual chart showing plug conditions and yours looks normal.

NGK Spark Plugs USA

Remember to use anti seize on the threads when you re-install.
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Old 05-22-2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scy View Post
I have the same engine and, no, the #3 spark plug is the same as the rest. I did have a bit of trouble with #4 on mine because they were original so a bit of corrosion had built up on the threads.
Your pic doesn't look too bad. Maybe running a little rich.
Give her another try, maybe she is just being stubborn.
Here is a visual chart showing plug conditions and yours looks normal.

NGK Spark Plugs USA

Remember to use anti seize on the threads when you re-install.
Thanks for the quick reply Scy.
The problem wasn't really the plug being hard to remove or stuck, I just couldn't get the socket to fit all the way into the plug in order for it to grab and turn.

I'm thinking, maybe a thin wall socket may do the trick. I'm gonna look for one tomorrow, if not I'll have to pay a shop to remove that one spark plug.

I've never experienced something like it tho.
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Old 05-22-2014
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Yes that is odd, could there be something next to the spark plug that is stopping the socket from dropping all the way down?

Can be hard to see in there
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Old 05-22-2014
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Yes, I guess I should mention that this is a 'new to me' truck, which is why I'm doing preventative maintenance on it.... I will get it out eventually.
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Old 05-22-2014
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OK for the sake of closure since I hate dead threads were people do not post up results, here's what the problem was.

Took the truck to a shop down the street as I got out from work, the mechanic there was as dumfounded as I was when he could not get the plug to come out.

So he got up on top of the motor with a good flashlight.. and guess what it was?

It turns out that at some point, somehow, somebody split/chipped the ceramic of a plug and those pieces got wedged in there pretty good, the vacuum wouldn't have helped here, so he used a large pick to scrape off and then air pressure to get the trash out and clean the well

Scrape, scrape, blow and out finally came the sparkplug

How about that..!? He charged me $20 and I gladly paid it with a smile.
She now purrrrrrs, haha I'm happy. On to the next project.

Hope this helps someone down the road, and thanks to those that chimed in.
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Old 05-25-2014
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In hindsight you are very lucky you could not get the plug out. A couple of small pieces of ceramic in the combustion chamber would have sucked.
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Old 05-25-2014
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Originally Posted by bratman2 View Post
In hindsight you are very lucky you could not get the plug out. A couple of small pieces of ceramic in the combustion chamber would have sucked.
No doubt, yes.. ceramic pieces in the combustion chambers is no bueno.

RonD was right when he said that there might be something in there.
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Old 05-29-2014
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I had the same issue with the E3's I put in The overall lenghts was the same but the seat was thinnner and lower the oem plug. The #1 plug wiire would not snap on to the top of the plug. I had to cut the plug wire back and use a deep thinwall socket to get them in.
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