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Spark Plugs/New used car checklist

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Spark Plugs/New used car checklist

PostSun Feb 02, 2014 6:36 pm

The weather was nice this weekend and I needed an oil change. My girlfriend also bought a new car (2007 Yaris, which I pimp to anyone who ever asks me for advice on car buying!) and it needed an oil change (tires might soon be on the agenda). I figured I'd change the spark plugs on both vehicles as well. My Ranger got an oil change, spark plug change, and new wipers; and her Yaris got an oil change, spark plug change, new air filter, new wipers, and a new battery.

Some notes:

People do not change spark plugs (or wipers) often enough. So simple and yet these plugs can be so ignored. I recently changed plugs on my Subaru in January so I figured I do my Ranger as well. I just had time, and workable outside temperatures, this weekend and since my girlfriend just bought a new-to-her Yaris, I'd get her car done too.

My Ranger's plugs were rusty and black. I just bought the truck for business in October. 128k miles. Looked like these plugs haven't been changed in at least 50k miles, if ever. I should have changed the oil as soon I as I bought the truck rather than believe the dealership I got it from that the fluids had been done over. Not pretty. The Yaris also had fouled plugs. Definitely never been changed. 76k miles. So easy to do! Why is this an oft ignored part of car maintenance?

I'd heard horror stories of changing the plugs on a Subaru. It was 12 degrees F out and I managed it AND a compression test. Super easy! I do have incredibly long, thin arms and hands and can get nearly anywhere in an engine bay though. No Marfan's, don't worry.

So what is the general used car checklist for you hoons? What do you do to a new-to-you vehicle?

For me:
Fluids - Oil, trans, differential if there is one ( AC is questionable for me )
Spark Plugs
Tires (if needed)
Shop vac and Rug Doctor special with the seats removed. (as soon as weather permits)
Feel the vehicle out and determine any other needs.

And yes, I did pay the appropriate blood price for a spark plug change/own car maintenance. Blood in oil forms these incredible droplets that just don't mix (who knew) and stay so red compared to the nasty black oil.

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