Decent Plugs and Wires

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23,776
Location
CA
Need new Plugs and Wires for a '96 Saturn 1.9L DOHC (7). I found some Bosch Platinum +2 Plugs at AutoZone for $3.99/each. They also have Duralast Plug Wires for $19.99/set. The nice part is that the Platinum +2 Plugs come w/ a $5 gift card by rebate. They also have the Bosch Platinum (Single) onsale for $1.29/plug, and the Bosch Platinums for $5.99/each, which come with a $10 gift card mail-in rebate. I wouldn't mind spending up to $5/plug, but anything more than that I would have to seriously look into. Thanks.
quote:
What about the plugs/wires that are recommended in the manual? is there a specific reason why you've decided against them?
I don't think they have a specific recommendation. I assume they use regular plugs, as the service interval is 30K.
quote:
Saturnfans has a lot of what *not* to use on your Saturn, too.
Saturnfans guys are BIG on OEM parts. [I dont know] [ May 09, 2006, 10:02 PM: Message edited by: The Critic ]
 
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3,593
Location
Outside smalltown, IL
Maybe I'm the rare case, but on a stock engine I've never seen any plugs work better than what's factory installed. In some cases the aftermarket stuff really works poorly. On a few Toyotas for example the Bosch Platinums will give you a CEL within a few thousand miles. A few friends have tried different and cheaper wires and they all seem to say the same thing. Replace the OEM wires with more OEM wires, or the ones made by Taylor...
 

The Critic

Thread starter
Messages
23,776
Location
CA
Did some research on Saturnfans. Apparently Platinum plugs do not seem to work well on Saturn engines, especially the Bosch ones. Thus, they recommended the standard NGK Copper Plugs or the NGK V-Power Copper Plugs. No specific recommendation on wires, but Bosch (or any quality ones) seems to be OK. Now: (4) NGK Copper Plugs = $8 @ Napa Auto Parts Bosch Spark Plug Wires= $27.99 @ AutoZone [Eek!] I would like to purchase the NGK V-Power Plugs, but does anyone know where I can find them, and how much they cost? [I dont know] Thanks.
 
Messages
2,077
Location
Cordelia, CA
The NGKs seem to be a good universally well regarded plug. I'd go with the V-Power if you can find it, but the standards do very well too. The Bosch wires, unlike their Platinum plugs, also seem to work well in all brands, and are, as you found, fairly cheap. I like MagneCors, but you are making a big step up in price for those. You could also go to GMPartsdirect.com to get OEM pieces. Before you get happy about the prices though, keep in mind that the shipping and handling is substantial. They usually wind up being a lot cheaper than the dealer though.
 
Messages
3,094
Location
Metro Detroit
I'd also recommend AC Delco wires. I've never had a problem with them. As a rule, GM ignition systems are very efficient, so I trust their parts in that regard. I don't think you can go wrong with an NGK plug, but I don't see why a platinum of the proper heat range wouldn't work. The OE AC Delco plugs are designed specifically for the car. Why change out regular plugs every 30k, when a platinum will last 60k?
 
Messages
537
Location
California
After years of being a mechanic on modified cars, I can tell you that you want to stay with the Saturn dealer plug wires. Aftermarket plug wires are #$%&. Bosch generally makes the world's best plugs, even for Japanese cars, but you don't want extra fancy plugs unless that is a direct replacement part.
 
Messages
6,171
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
I'll jump in also with NGK v-groove recommendation. I also run NGK wires which are OEM on my Mazda. The can be found cheap at a few places online, but it helps if you're buying other tune-up parts too. ebay, allcarparts.us, aplusparts.com, rockauto.com If you go non-dealer for your wires, get some with a lifetime warranty (NGK has that even) and then after 75-90k miles get them replaced for free.
 
Messages
1,088
Location
Baltimore, MD
I have had good luck with plain old AC Delco plugs in my Saturn. (I don't believe that those are truly the OEM plugs you get if you bought them at Saturn. So, you probably won't fool the Saturnfans OEM police.) I haven't used Bosch Platinum, and I wouldn't try based on the extreme bad reputation on Saturnfans that you found. I have not used NGK, but would give them a try. I used Champion once on the Saturn and they didn't seem to last long or hold their gap. You might try Rockauto.com. I don't know how bad the price would end up after paying shipping on a small order, though.
 
Messages
6,171
Location
Santa Barbara, CA
Jim 5, that's exacly how ALL NGK wire sets come. Fit like factory, numbered and everything. Whenever I do a tune-up on any family members car, that's what gets ordered - I assume any quality set of wires would be like that, but not the $19.99 Autozone specials.
 
Messages
4,009
Location
Calgary Canada
I don't have an issue with aftermarket wires for certain cars. I like OEM from the dealer because you know that the wires will be exactly the right length, with connectors having exactly the right shape, and they'll often be numbered at the plug and distributor end so you can't mess them up. They cost more, but in my view there's value in those features because your engine bay will look stock, and won't be messy because of wires that are too long or connectors that point the wires off in the wrong direction.
 
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