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Changing Spark Plugs and Leads for the Holden VE II Commodore

  • For optimal performance and fuel economy, the spark plugs installed on your vehicle require changing at regular intervals.
    For these model vehicles, it is recommended that the spark plugs be changed roughly every 100,000Kms,
    For more extreme use, such as spirited driving, or track use, the spark plugs should be changed much more regularly.

    The following document describes how to change both the spark plugs, and leads for a G.M. L76 V8, however this guide is applicable to other engine models such as G.M. V6s,
    and other Generation III, and Generation IV V8s.
  • In order to proceed, you will require the following tools and parts,
    NGK Platinum Plugs and MSD Leads

    Tools Required
    1) 15 mm (5/8") spark plug socket.
    2) A Socket Ratchet Wrench.
    3) A Socket Extension.
    4) Some Rags.

    Parts Required - V8 Models
    1) 8 x NGK Platinum Spark Plugs.
    1) MSD V8 Lead Set (Part # ).

  • NOTE: To make life easier for yourself, ensure that the engine has sufficiently cooled, so as you do not scold or burn yourself when working on or around the engine and engine bay.

    1) Open the bonnet by pulling on the bonnet release located under the steering wheel column.
    2) Remove the plastic engine cover by simply pulling the cover upwards. The engine cover is held in place using 4 metal clips.
    3) You will now be able to see the spark plug leads, and spark plug locations.
  • Note: If you are not changing the spark plug leads, you can safely skip this step.

    Firstly, start with one side of the Engine, removing the spark plug lead from the ignition coil, then removing the other side of the spark plug lead from the spark plug.
    If you have original plugs and leads installed, then it is possible that the leads will be difficult to remove.
    If you are having trouble removing the leads, it is recommended to use long nose pliers to pull the lead off the ignition coil, or spark plug, using the spark plug lead boot.

    The following image shows the difference between the standard ignition leads, and the MSD ignition leads.
    Once the old leads have been removed, you can start connecting the new leads to their respective ignition coils.
    Note: Do not connect the leads to the spark plugs yet, as we will be replacing the spark plugs next !!
  • Using the 15mm Spark Plug Socket, the socket extension, and a small ratchet wrench, begin loosening each spark plug one by one.
    Note: You may require some force to initially loosen the spark plug.
    Once the spark plug has been loosened, you may find it easier to remove the ratchet wrench from the extension, and remove the spark plug by hand, as shown in this picture.
    Once you have removed a spark plug, immediately replace the wown plug with a new spark plug.
    To do this,
    Fit the spark plug to the 15mm Spark plug socket, as shown in the picture below,
    Next, attempt to fit the spark plug using the spark plug soicket, and extension bar, and tightening to hand tightness without using the ratchet wrench.
    Once you have completed this step, continue to tighten the spark plug using the ratched wrench.

    Continue the above steps until you have changed all the spark plugs on the engine.

    The following image gives you an indication of the spark plug wear, when compared to the new NGK platinum spark plugs.
    The above spark plugs have been used for around 100,000 Kms.
  • Once all the spark plugs have been changed, you can begin connecting the spark plug leads to each individual spark plug.
    You should be able to feel the spark plug leads snaps in to place on to the spark plug.
    Also ensure that the spark plug lead is properly connecting the to ignition coil.
    If the lead is not correctly connected to either the spark plug, or ignition coil, then the engine will mis-fire, and will not run correctly.

    Once all the leads have been changed, your engine should look something like this.
    Finally, start the engine, and ensure that the engine does not have any misses, and runs smoothly under load.

    Once you are satisfied that the plugs and leads have been installed correctly, replace the engine cover and close the hood.
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