Are you looking for the ultimate spark plug wire set?
You've come to the right place!
In this ProperMechanic.com guide, you will learn:
- The 5 best spark plug wire sets
- Tips for tuning your ignition system
- How to test your spark plug wires with a multimeter
And much more!
Below is a quick list of all our top products. Keep scrolling to learn more about how to choose and use the best spark plug wires on the market.
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Our Overall #1 Rated Pick
ACDelco spark plug wires are our favorite choice because they are straight to the point with their product.
These high voltage wires are exactly what you need in your next engine tune-up because they will provide you with the quality you need without breaking the bank.
Support the economy of the United States by picking up some ACDelco spark plug wires. And while you're at it, pick up some ACDelco iridium-tipped spark plugs that will last reliably up to 100 thousand miles.
You aren't going to be let down; just be sure to plug in your vehicle's information (model, make, and year) in the Amazon search engine before you purchase to ensure you are getting the right part.
Are you still operating a carbureted engine that uses a distributor cap to supply power to the spark plugs?
Or maybe you have an older fuel injected vehicle that still uses spark plug wires to plug into an ignition coil or magneto terminal.
Whatever the case may be, chances your spark plug wires are lacking in conductivity if they haven't been replaced in the past.
That means it's time to buy new spark plug wires!
Don't stress. There are plenty of replacement options that will help boost your engine performance, and you can find them all on websites like Amazon for insanely affordable prices.
It's not like the old days when finding car parts was a nightmare. We are in the 21st century, so remember that when repairing your engine.
Top 5 Best Spark Plug Wire Sets
How To Change Spark Plug Wires?
Changing spark plug wires is easy, and it's something you can do yourself.
Here's what you'll need:
- pliers or spark plug wire-pullers (long nose, needle nose, whatever is available)
- dielectric grease (optional)
- basic screwdriver/socket set
Pop the hood/remove any engine parts/covers necessary to locate the spark plug wire(s) that are connected to the spark plug(s).
Remove the spark plugs by pulling and twisting with either your hands or a set of pliers/spark plug wire-pullers. Use a magic marker to mark which cable goes where. Each new cable must get plugged back into the right position.
Note: Rubbing alcohol inside of a spray bottle is helpful when removing old electrical connections. If you find the spark plug wire is difficult to remove, just spray some alcohol down into the spark plug hole; it'll come right off.
Compare the old spark plug wires to the new ones. Aside from length, do they look about the same at both ends? Do the terminal ends plug into the spark plug/distributor cap correctly?
Install the new wires to the appropriate end and position. You can use some dielectric grease on each end before plugging them in to enhance the electrical connection.
Inspect the position of the new wires; Use zip ties if necessary to keep the wires from touching hot surfaces on the engine.
Start the engine to verify that you have performed the procedures correctly.
If the engine doesn't start(and it did before), or if you notice a check engine light has illuminated on the dash, immediately kill the engine and verify you have the wires plugged into each correct terminal.
Note: When installing aftermarket spark plug wires, they should fit easily but also firmly into the terminal connection. Don't force it; if it seems like the spark plug wires aren't the right size, they probably aren't.
You are now firing on all cylinders. Good job!
Here is a video on how to properly test your spark plug wires:
Are There Different Types of Spark Plug Wire Sets?
Yes; one of the differences is in the boot ends/terminal design.
Some spark plugs are located further down into the engine head, they require a longer boot end.
The other difference in the terminals is the HEI design, which is the newer design where the distributor cap uses the same terminal that goes to the spark plug. With the HEI, it doesn't matter which end of the spark plug wire you put where.
Spark plug wires that are not the HEI design have a female terminal end on the distributor cap.
When identifying which spark plug wires you have, distinguish male and female connection points to help you find the right set.
Let's outline the parts of a spark plug wire to help you better understand their function. Every spark plug wire is made up of:
- Conductor wire (usually copper)
- Spark plug terminal
- Distributor/coil terminal (possibly the same as the spark plug terminal)
- Silicone jacket on the outside
- EPDM/EVA fiberglass braid for added strength and flexibility
Spark plug wire length is also something to take into consideration when buying.
There are even spark plug wire kits on Amazon that allow you to crimp the correct boot end on to the ignition wires once they are cut to length.
Read More >> What's The Best Way To Clean A Spark Plug?
How To Choose The Right Spark Plug Wires?
Buying the OEM spark plug wires is a great choice in any situation.
However, spark plug wires are pretty universal; a good way to find the best fit for the job is to plug in your engine or vehicle year, make and model (VIN) on Amazon to verify that the part fits.
After you have your vehicle information into any search engine, it's easy to quit looking for the right parts and start looking for the quality and price that fits your budget.
Before making an online purchase, remove or inspect one of the existing spark plug cables, and see if the new and old cables resemble each other.
How Long Should My Spark Plug Wires Last?
Spark plug wires function at their max potential for about 60,000 miles. You should replace old spark plug wires even if they still work to enhance the conductivity and improve engine performance.
Spark plug wires go bad because the terminal ends in the spark plug boots erode and lose conductivity, or because part of the wire touches up to something hot like the engine or exhaust and melts.
When replacing spark plugs on an older vehicle, it is certainly a good idea to replace the spark plug wires plus the distributor cap and the rotor.
Read More >> How Do You Identify A Bad Spark Plug?
What If The Old Spark Plugs Break When Being Removed?
This is a common problem for this specific engine because of a design defect in the original spark plugs.
If you find a broken spark plug upon removal, don't panic. This is a factory defect. The best decision is to contact your local Ford dealer to find out what they can do for you as far as reimbursement.
If the dealer leaves you in the dark without any help, you still shouldn't worry; purchase a lisle spark plug remover set that is made especially for this problem and take care of business.
You can start by spraying PB blaster into the plug hole and letting it sit for a minute.
And don't forget to blow all of the spark plugs hole out with an air hose after you have all of the sparks plugs free.
Is Gapping The Spark Plug That Important?
Some professional automotive technicians will tell you that you can
Check Engine Light Still On?
You must take into consideration that fouled spark plugs aren't the only reason your engine misfires.
After running a diagnostic check in the OBD2 port of engines like the Triton 3, here are some further procedures that will help turn your check engine off.
- Diagnostic check
First, you must run a diagnostic check on your engine to pull any codes.
Any local auto parts store should have an OBDII scanner, and it should be free to pull your vehicle into the parking lot and pull the codes.
The solution for some codes will be more obvious than others.
- Check ignition coils
One of the most common misfire problems that are mistaken for being a bad spark plug is when an ignition coil goes bad.
So how do you know that an ignition coil is bad?
You simply have to trade it with another ignition coil. For example, if the diagnostic code reads "misfire on cylinder 4" then you should trade the ignition from cylinder 4 with the ignition coil in cylinder 5, and perform the diagnostic test again; if it comes back with "misfire on cylinder 5" then you know the ignition coil is the problem.
Diagnosing ignition coils is easier than replacing a spark plug, so be sure to check them before ripping the spark plugs out.
- Engine air filter
Do you know where the engine air filter is on your 5.4 Triton? Locate it and check its condition if you haven't in a while.
Changing out or at least cleaning your engine air filter every 20 thousand miles or so will keep your engine running smoothly.
An air filter that is blocked with dirt or debris can cause an engine misfire due to a rich air/fuel mixture; it can even foul a spark plug because of excess fuel left inside the combustion chamber.
Get Better Engine Performance
As a vehicle owner, you want your engine to perform at its top potential.
And seeing as there are plenty of different ways to enhance/maintain engine performance, you can stay busy souping up your 5.4 Triton.
Here are a few ideas of ways you can get more horsepower and better fuel efficiency:
Installing a cold air intake will bring more air into your engine enabling it to breathe and perform better.
You can find cold air intake kits on sites like Amazon for super reasonable prices. Just plug in your vehicle's info to the search engine and search for 'cold air intake'.
Performance-enhancing chips/software upgrades are a sure way to greatly reduce horsepower and throttle response.
Countless companies have an upgraded solution for your 5.4 Triton, and price ranges will vary depending on quality and function. Check out this high-performance tuner chip that is compatible with the 5.4 Triton.
Performing basic maintenance on your vehicle is surprisingly one of the best ways to maximize efficiency and performance.
It might sound redundant or silly, but you would be surprised at the difference even just an oil change makes when analyzing engine performance. You can fail an emissions tailpipe test just because the engine oil is old and heavy.
So keep that oil and filter changed on time!
Proper Tire Inflation
Did you know that fuel economy significantly increases when your tires are inflated properly?
Stay on top of that TPMS sensor; you would be surprised at how your gas mileage suffers when your tires are deflated.
Good Luck and enjoy your Ford truck!
Read More >> What Are The Best Spark Plugs For Fuel Economy?
My Reviews Of The Best 5 Spark Plug Wires
Pick #1: ACDelco
AC Delco is a good ole' American parts company that provides quality pieces for your ignition system.
These spark plug wires fit properly around your spark plugs with a watertight seal.
The terminal design is intended for corrosion resistance and plug retention with a coil wire retainer that prevents micro arcing and fretting.
Pick up these ACDelco wires in sets of eight at a reasonable price on Amazon and you will find them on your front porch in just a couple of days.
Pick #2: Edelbrock
These Edelbrock spark plug wires are made using the highest quality materials for high performance and maximum voltage.
Consisting of an 8.5 mm diameter silicone jacket that protects the Kevlar spiral core from moisture, heat, and chemicals, this is a professional spark plug wire set that is both designed well and has an attractive look inside the engine bay.
Spend the extra money on a product like Edelbrock that is thoughtfully designed.
Pick #3: NGK
NGK is the world's leader in spark plug production.
These spark plug wires that come in sets of four have numbers on them to help avoid connecting them in the wrong place, and they also have a variable-pitch winding designed for ultra-low resistance.
The terminal ends are corrosion resistant, positive-locking stainless steel designed to fit tight and resist vibration. NGK provides you with high-quality wires at a low price.
Pick #4: Denso
You can't go wrong with Denso spark plug wires that are designed for better efficiency and also priced economically.
These spark plug cables are the perfect option for vehicles like Toyota, Ford, Nissan, and Honda when it comes time for a tune-up.
Just be sure to verify your vehicle information before purchasing to make sure you are getting the right parts for your ride.
Pick #5: MSD
MSD spark plug wires have a copper alloy conductor with a resistance value of 50 ohms per foot for a spark that is superior to other spark plug wires.
The outer sleeve on these bad boys is made from a proprietary compound that helps resist abrasion and high heat.
The stainless steel terminals on MSD spark plug wires have a Dupont Kevlar conductor core for increased strength.
Our Top Pick: ACDelco
ACDelco is our top pick because they provide quality.
These will also likely be the OEM part on Chevy and GM vehicles.
The great thing about car parts that are locally made is that they generally don't take too long to ship, and they also aren't overly expensive, so you can count on getting quality and forget about an unreasonable price.
Plus, it's an excellent value for the money! Check the low price now on Amazon.