As an owner of a Toyota Tacoma pickup, it is best to keep the pickup running at optimum performance. One of the often overlooked maintenance items is replacing your spark plugs. Here is a handy guide on how to replace them.
Toyota recommends that spark plugs should be changed out every 60,000 miles. This can fluctuate based on how hard you drive your truck and/or if you tow often with it. Driving your truck this way can cause the spark plugs to wear out faster. Old spark plugs that cost you performance like MPG are bad for your wallet. Being that spark plugs are relatively cheap, it is a good idea to replace them whenever you feel performance slipping.
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Here is how you replace them:
- The first step is to make sure you are working on a cool engine. Make sure you have turned off your engine and have allowed it to sit for a while. Next, open the hood and locate the spark plug cover. This cover can be located on the top of the engine or on the side (depending on your model).Once you have removed this cover, you will see the spark plug wires and ignition coils. The ignition coils plug into the tip of the spark plugs.
- Carefully, remove the ignition coils from the spark plugs. Generally, you can twist and slowly apply pressure when removing them – don’t yank on them. Once, they are removed, you can then see the spark plugs. Next, take a spark plug socket with a socket wrench and remove the spark plug in the cylinder well. Carefully turn the wrench to the left and take your time removing each one. Snapping a spark plug because you are in a hurry, can result in an expensive repair.
- Remove the new spark plugs from their container and apply a coat of anti-seize compound to the threads. Then, carefully hand start the spark plugs back into the cylinder well. Once they are hand started, further tighten with the spark plug socket and socket wrench. It is also advised to check the spark plug’s tension with a tension testing tool. The spark plug will specify the tension needed on the packaging it came with.
- After replacing all the plugs, put the ignition coils back on each one and re-install the spark plug cover. Congrats you replaced your spark plugs.
Proper maintenance on your Toyota Tacoma will have the truck performing as intended for years to come. If you need parts or advice on how to maintain it, stop by your local Toyota dealership for help.