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tips when replacing coils


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Jacking the engine is only for those who don't have woman-pleasing fingers. Here's some happysnaps and a rant about how I managed to do it. It's for a TT, but it'd work for just about any coil in head subie. As usual, stylish green arrows point the way. The camera sucks, and there's not much room in there so sorry for the blurry photos, click on the thumbnails for bigger versions. G'luck!

1. Here's the stuff you need to get rid of. Battery is optional, but free's up a bit more room. Washer bottle can be a pain, but i'll go in to that below.

th_plugs1.jpg

2. Here's what you need to remove to get the airbox out. Careful with the AFM, it's like a delicate flower. Some douche mechanic dropped mine once and it died a slow and painful death until I noticed the large dent in the casing. When replacing the pipe from AFM -> Intake be sure to keep the clamps in such a way as you can screw them tight again. Nothing sucks more than finally getting it back together only to realise the clamps are stuck around the wrong way.

th_plugs2.jpg

3. Here you can see one of the coilpack connectors. If you're replacing the coils then you'll need to undo this. I did one at a time so I didn't get them mixed up, but I think there's some colouring system that also indicates which is the front and which is the back connector.

th_plugs3.jpg

4. On to the other side now.. The arrows indicate all that you need to remove the battery and washer bottle. The battery is optional, but taking it out gives you a bit more room to get the front coil/plug out. The washer bottle is a right bastard if it's full of water, because as soon as you remove the washer hoses water starts going everywhere. I either run it dry (because i'm too lazy to fill it up again) or make sure all the electrical plugs and bolts are removed before I disconnect the hoses.

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Here's a close up of the washer bottle electrical connectors.

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And another of the rotten hoses that you need to take off.

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5. For the rest of the snaps I'm going to use the passenger side as an example. You can see in this image the 2x coil packs sitting in the heads. These are fairly new (at the time) coils so they aren't a dirty poo-brown colour yet.

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6. You can see here a single bolt that holds the coilpack in. From memory it's a 12mm bolt, and due to space restrictions I tend to use a spanner rather than a socket to undo it.

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7. Once the bolt is loose if you can get your fingers around the coil then wiggle it free, otherwise grab the connector lead and pull it out carefully. They tend to be jammed in a bit and fly out rather quickly all of a sudden, which I'm sure does wonders for them. You can see here where the plug goes inside the rubber cover of the coilpack, which isn't the easiest thing to do, but more on that later. Anyway, if you're only doing the coils then stop here and repeat for all of the other coilpacks. I did the plugs at the same time so I shall continue on. I also only did one coil/plug at a time to avoid mixing up front/back coils.

th_plugs9.jpg

8. So here's our gaping plughole with the plug sitting in it still. Thankfully someone bought me a socket set with a sparkplug socket and flexible connector so the task of getting the bugger out wont be that hard. It is tight for room though, so woman pleasing fingers are key.

th_plugs10.jpg

Here you can see my socket working it's magic on the hole. It's fairly easy to get the socket on the plug, just make sure it's on there right before you start unscrewing it. Because of the limited room to move the socket you should either get a smaller one (my socket is huge), or unscrew it to a point where you can just use your hands and the plug-socket to undo it the rest of the way by hand.

th_plugs11.jpg

12. Once it's out just put the new plug in the end of the socket and re-insert into the hole. I do it carefully by hand at first so as to not cross thread the plug. Once it becomes too hard to do by hand I re-attatch the flexi connector and the rest and tighten it up.

th_plugs12.jpg

13. Once the plug is nicely back in it's hole the interesting job of putting the coil back in is upon us. It's a bit of an art I think, but this is how I do it. I put the coilpack in the hole but not all of the way. Then I force the coilpack to the top of the plughole and push it in further until it stops as the bottom of the rubber sheath bit bangs in to the spark plug electrode. Then I slowly move the coil downwards while pushing in, and usually the electrode slips in to the coilpack and slides up as I push. You'll know if you've got it in right as the coil pack will slide right in to the head. If you've ****ed it up then the coil pack will hang out quite some way and the bolt wont go in.

14. Bolt up the coilpack using the spanner again, and you're all done with that coilpack/plug.

Hope this is of help to someone!

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a big help i found when doing mine was to use a spanner on the coils, not a ratchet.

I didnt even have to take the battery out, just need to take your time. Be sure not to drop the spanner though.... mine got stuck in one of my exhaust headsheilds and i had to jack the car up to find it again >_<

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 KwS said:

a big help i found when doing mine was to use a spanner on the coils, not a ratchet.

I didnt even have to take the battery out, just need to take your time. Be sure not to drop the spanner though.... mine got stuck in one of my exhaust headsheilds and i had to jack the car up to find it again >_<

Haha got to love that feeling when you drop a tool into a place like that! one other bit of common sense which is sometimes overlooked is when replacing the coil make sure it is pushed onto the plug by hand, using the bolt to pull it in often results in the coil going on crooked and cracking the plastic end of it. Sounds obvious but I have seen several damaged this way over the years.....

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 KwS said:

a big help i found when doing mine was to use a spanner on the coils, not a ratchet.

I didnt even have to take the battery out, just need to take your time. Be sure not to drop the spanner though.... mine got stuck in one of my exhaust headsheilds and i had to jack the car up to find it again >_<

Ratchet spanners FTW

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