Want to know which are the best spark plugs for fuel economy?
We've got all the answers!
In this ProperMechanic.com guide, you will learn:
- Best spark plugs for fuel economy
- Guidelines for enhancing fuel economy in your engine
- Tips for servicing the spark plugs on your engine
And much more!
Our Top Pick
Our Top Pick
NGK G-Power Spark Plug
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Bosch Platinum Spark Plug
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Best High End
Best High End
Denso Platinum TT Spark Plugs
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Autolite Platinum Spark Plug
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ACDelco Professional Platinum Spark Plug
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Overall #1 Rated Pick
Updated As of 5/14/2020
NGK wins for the best efficiency at the best price. That's because NGK is one of the world's leading spark plug manufacturers.
We think you are going to be the most satisfied with your NGK plugs because there are plenty of purchasing options for you to choose from.
NGK spark plugs are also manufactured with trivalent metal plating that displays a silver or chrome finish on the nickel alloy core to help reduce corrosion, resist chemicals and moisture, and also acts as a releasing agent when removing the plug.
This is why it's not completely necessary to apply anti-seize before installing quality spark plugs like NGK.
So the next time you replace spark plugs during an engine tune-up, choose models like the NGK BKR5EGP or G Power spark plugs. You won't be let down with NGK even inside high-performance engines.
NGK spark plugs even have a numbering system for low and high heat ranges, so you can purchase a plug that is going to perform best with specific operations conditions.
It's time to take advantage of the optimum fuel economy for your engine. Here at Proper Mechanic, we have provided you with this buying guide paired with great tips for tuning up your engine to its maximum potential of fuel economy.
Because we want you to be firing on all cylinders.
Below is a quick list of all our top products. Keep scrolling to learn more about how to choose and use the best spark plugs for fuel economy.
Top 5 Best Spark Plugs for Fuel Economy
Check out our below list for a summary of our results. Keep on reading to learn more about your other options!
How To Change Spark Plugs For Your Fuel Economy?
Changing your spark plugs is easy!
First, you'll need to gain access to the spark plugs.
For some small engines, accessing the spark plug is as easy as popping the spark plug wire off and using a box end wrench to break the plug free.
When working on a vehicle, you may have some finagling to do by removing simple components like air intake hoses, plastic covers, etc, but ultimately there isn't much to it; you'll have to pull the ignition coils(fuel injected vehicles)using a screwdriver or socket wrench, and you might need accessories like a universal joint adapter and extensions for your ratchet to gain access to some of the harder to get plugs.
Engines with a carburetor will require that you remove the spark plug wire boots to access the spark plugs. You can use a yellow or white magic marker/crayon to number the wires when removing so that you don't forget which order they go.
Remove the spark plugs with a spark plug socket, and remember to use a torque wrench to torque the spark plugs to spec when reinstalling.
Read More >> How Do You Clean Spark Plugs?
Check out our page on when the appropriate time is to change out your spark plugs.
Do you know about the spark plug gap? Spark plugs have two electrodes, a side(ground) electrode, and a center electrode.
The distance between these two electrodes affects your vehicle's fuel economy. You can set the spark plug gap to spec by using feeler gauges or a spark plug gap tool.
For a spark plug to fire, the electricity travels from the spark plug cables to the terminal of the plug creating a spark that travels from the center electrode to the side electrode where it grounds out on the engine.
Are There Different Types of Spark Plugs For Fuel Economy?
Yes; iridium spark plugs are said to be the best quality spark plugs for fuel economy with platinum spark plugs being a close second.
However, any new spark plug that is gapped correctly will burn the fuel/air mixture with great fuel efficiency. Your vehicle/engine's fuel economy relies on much more than just the spark plugs to burn the fuel/air mixture efficiently.
Does OEM make a difference when replacing spark plugs?
No; as long as the spark plug is compatible with the engine you are working on, you are in good shape. Ask your local parts professional for advice, and they will say the same.
A good rule of thumb is if the spark plugs were made in the USA, Japan or Germany then they are most likely a good choice for parts replacement.
Chinese automobile manufacturers are also moving along with their technology, but spark plugs made in China are not recommended by professionals for use in automobile engines.
Note: The standard spark plug generally uses a copper core because copper conducts and insulates electricity better than any other metal.
Other super hard metals like iridium and platinum are used on the tip of the plugs for a more durable design that burns hot without deteriorating. Iridium and platinum plugs are great because they burn off carbon deposits to prevent fouling.
How To Choose Spark Plug Wires For Advanced Fuel Economy?
So you've tuned up your engine, and now you are trying to decide which spark plug wires are going to give you the best efficiency when it comes to fuel costs.
The best procedure for choosing the right spark plug wires is by entering your vehicle's VIN/model to an online parts website like Amazon.
You could also give your local parts specialist a call whether it's a parts store or the dealership.
How Long Should My Spark Plugs Last In My Gas-Power Engine?
Copper spark plugs will last anywhere from 10-20 thousand miles, whereas higher quality plugs like iridium and platinum can last 100 thousand+ miles on the same set.
But 100 thousand miles is a long period to go without a new set of plugs; a good servicing period is about every 60 thousand miles to ensure vehicle reliability.
If you are wondering why your high-quality spark plugs only lasted a few thousand miles, the answer is that you have an underlying problem in your engine that needs to be taken care of first.
Inspecting an engine for oil leaks, or even performing a cylinder compression test is very insightful if you keep going through spark plugs.
Can A Fouled Spark Plug Be Reused?
Do you have a fouled spark plug? A spark plug can be reused when cleaned and gapped correctly.
Some may argue that if you are going to service the spark plugs then you should change them out for new ones no matter what, but that isn't necessarily true in all cases.
To speak loosely, and especially on a personal maintenance level, the goal is to get the engine to run without misfiring. When you have done that, you have eliminated the problem.
You are going to be getting the best fuel economy with spark plugs that are straight out of the box 100% of the time when gapped correctly.
Note: Sanding iridium and platinum spark plug electrodes will likely reduce the performance because the electrode tips aren't made of pure iridium or pure platinum.
They are manufactured with a technique called precious metal layering that is used for using the minimal amount of precious metals as possible to yield similar results.
Use liquids like a brake cleaner, alcohol, carb cleaner, gasoline, and a rag to effectively clean a spark plug tip. You could also use a wire brush or sandpaper.
Are Junkyard Spark Plugs Okay To Use?
Junkyard parts are a lifesaver for the skilled technician and also a big moneymaker for car flipping businesses.
Does that mean spark plugs from the junkyard are safe to use? Of course, they are. Some engines in salvage yards look brand new when popping the hood.
There are plenty of parts in there for scalping, so get out there and take care of business on all of those cars that look exactly like yours but have the eerie vibe of being in a wreck.
But here's the real question: Will junkyard spark plugs affect fuel economy? You'll need to be good at inspecting them first.
Use your best judgment. Just don't let the engine misfire on you. Re-gapping the junkyard plug is necessary before installing it in your motor.
But Is It Necessary to Gap the Plug?
Some professionals will tell you that it is necessary to gap the spark plug to what the car's engine wants for the best fuel economy and performance--they are right--some spark plugs aren't the same gap as what is specified by the engineer of the particular motor you are working on.
And you can't blame a professional technician. Why would you want to mess around with someone else's vehicle by not knowing the facts about the repair you are doing?
Besides, spark plug gap tools are super cheap, and if you are close to an auto parts store then it's not going to be a problem to have access.
Heck, you might even be replacing the spark plugs right there in the parking lot of your local parts dealer.
Here's something to remember: Before you go into the auto parts store with those eager eyes and desires to purchase all of the parts for your engine tune-up, you should make a list and have a plan of all the parts you want to take home.
Trust us; waiting for the parts guy to pull all the right parts for your project is NOT FUN when you could have bought everything online off of sites like Amazon, waited a couple of days, but also you saved the long trip to the parts store that can sometimes take hours.
My Reviews Of The Best 5 Spark Plugs For Fuel Economy
Pick #1 - NGK G-Power Spark Plug
Thousands of 4 and 5-star ratings are one of the reasons why you can't go wrong with NGK spark plugs.
As one of the largest spark plug manufacturers in the world, NGK has countless different options to choose from when purchasing a spark plug, and they all function with exceptional quality.
Try products like the NGK Iridium IX spark plugs and you won't be let down.
Pick #2 - Bosch Plantinum Spark Plugs
Looking for the best performance?
Bosch spark plugs come reliably pre-gapped and ready to give your engine its max performance no matter which model of Bosch spark plugs you decide to use.
With the reputation of being one of the first manufacturers of the spark plug, Bosch has revolutionary designs like a four-point side electrode design that is designed for optimum electricity functionality.
Bosch is among the best, but you're going to pay extra.
Pick #3 - Denso Platinum TT Spark Plugs
Denso offers you high performance at an unbelievable price.
Denso is a company partly owned by Toyota, so as you could imagine the quality of their spark plugs coincides as being a cheap and also smart alternative to more expensive products.
Sometimes you just need a part that works, and it doesn't matter what the price is; those are the times when products like the Denso PK20TT or Platinum TT spark plugs are the perfect option.
Pick #4 - Autolite Platinum Spark Plug
Spark plugs like the Autolite Iridium XP provide a V-trimmed platinum side ware that resists wear and is designed more durably.
Autolite is the official spark plug of NASCAR, and with consistent 4 and 5 stars Amazon ratings, it is clear that this is a reliable purchase.
Purchase your next set of spark plugs in packs of four from this company that is based out of the USA.
Pick #5 - ACDelco Professional Platinum Spark Plug
Spark plugs like the ACDelco 41 are a solid choice by a brand made in the USA.
ACDelco is the OEM option for Chevy/GM and other American vehicles, so you can count on the quality of performance along the lines of a highly reputable American vehicle manufacturer.
ACDelco is a great choice in engines like the Chevy 350 and 5.7 Chevy Vortec
Our Top Pick: NGK G-Power Spark Plug
NGK spark plugs are our favorite choice because they offer the highest quality at the lowest cost.
So why are NGK plugs such a good value on sites like Amazon?
Maybe it's because NGK is possibly the world's biggest manufacturer of spark plugs.
And with manufacturing plants in the USA, you will still be supporting American jobs by purchasing NGK.
NGK also has a wide variety of iridium tip spark plugs to choose from.
Read in the product details before purchasing to find out the advantages that each different design exhibits.
There is a fascinating amount of engineering that goes into such a simple but crucial part of a gasoline-powered engine
Final Thoughts On The Best Spark Plugs For Fuel Economy
You can find some of the best deals on spark plugs and other auto parts when shopping online at sites like Amazon.
Keep in mind also that spark plugs aren't the only component that causes misfiring in your engine, and fouled spark plugs can happen for more reason than one.
If you are having problems with your fuel economy and want to tune-up your vehicle, here is a crash course on how to get better fuel economy and better performance.
- Air filter
Your engine needs a good air supply for achieving a Changing your engine air filter out every 20 thousand miles or so will help with fuel economy.
Carburetor engines: Here are a few things you can look over when tuning your engine for the best fuel economy:
A big reason why spark plugs foul in engines that have a carburetor is that the carburetor isn't jetted properly. The proper air/fuel mixture is crucial for achieving the perfect combustion.
- Distributor cap and rotor
Servicing your distributor cap and rotor in older vehicles will do a world of change in your fuel economy. For example, if there is moisture in your distributor cap this can cause problems like flashover that drastically affect the engine performance.
- Spark plug wires
Spark plug wires lose their power of conductivity over time. Consider changing the spark plug wires on your vehicle if they look old and corroded. You can also try applying dielectric grease to the spark plug boot before hooking it back up to the spark plug for a strong electrical connection.
Fuel Injected Engines:
- Ignition coils
Ignition coils usually last 100 thousand miles, so as you could imagine they may need to be replaced with the spark plugs.
- Ignition coil wiring
If you aren't finding the problem with your ignition system issue, then it could be hiding in the ignition coil wiring. Why?
Maybe the ignition coil wiring touched up against a hot engine part on the engine and melted. Or maybe a rat chewed through the electrical cable while the car or engine was parked(seriously, this happens).
- Fuel injectors
Fuel injectors get clogged and drastically reduce the fuel economy in your vehicle.
Aside from running fuel injector cleaner that you can put in the gas tank, you can also remove the fuel injectors of the engine you are working on and clean them out by attaching a hose to a bottle of seafoam or another cleaning agent and applying 12V of electricity to the injector.
What Kind Of Car Are You Driving?
Have you thought about your carbon footprint? Or in other words the number of hydrocarbons you emit into the atmosphere? Some people don't even think about it.
And don't feel bad if you haven't changed over to electric power; the newer gas-powered engines in vehicles emit hardly anything due to the technology of advanced computer and exhaust systems.
Trying To Get The Best Fuel Economy?
We don't blame you. Engine technology of today is a wonderful thing. Engines, in general, are a mesmerizing concept. I mean who even invented the world's first engine?
That's arguable. There are concepts of the engine ever since Egyptian times, and who knows what existed even before that to help accomplish random tasks using energy.
You will achieve the best fuel economy by not stomping on the gas pedal and driving a reasonable speed.
ust know for sure that new spark plugs are going to help you get the best fuel economy when doing maintenance on a vehicle that hasn't been tuned up in a while.
Perform A Brake Line Flush At The Same Time
Did you know that servicing your brake system should happen at about the same time as your spark plug service?
More specifically, you should have a brake flush performed on your vehicle every 20 thousand miles or so, but it's a good thing to consider when changing out your spark plugs.
Does The Spark Plug Insulator Play A Role In Fuel Economy?
The white aluminum oxide ceramic part of the spark plug is called the insulator and is made out of alumina powder. Does this affect fuel economy? Sure it does when it's broken.
If the ceramic cracks because the spark plug was dropped or over-torqued, then the damaged spark plug will most likely misfire when installed into the cylinder head.
Miles/Per Gallon or Kilometers/Liter Calculation For Vehicles
Those of us who drive older vehicles regularly like to calculate our approximate fuel economy by filling the gas tank up all the way, resetting the odometer, and measuring how many miles/liters it takes to run down the gas tank to the halfway mark.
You'll also need to know the volume of your fuel tank.
For example, if you have a 12-gallon fuel tank, you have driven 200 miles and your gas tank is perfectly at the halfway point, your fuel economy is 33 miles per gallon because you have burned 6 gallons of fuel and traveled 200 miles. 200 divided by 6 is about 33.333... when using a calculator.
A lot of new vehicles even tell you on the displays how good of fuel economy you are achieving.
Keep The Gas Tank Full
It's a mythical story of mysterious check engine light problems, decreased fuel economy, and other engine problems when the gas tank isn't full.
Having a full gas tank is something that is economically in your favor.
Your engine will get better gas mileage, last longer, and be free of problems like water condensation in the gas tank running through your whole engine(who would have guessed, water inside of the engine!?).
You now have a better idea of which spark plugs to use on your next service, and you should also be able to at least know the process of performing the service even if you aren't going to personally do it yourself.
We'll be right here the next time you are wanting to know the best parts and the best deals.