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Old January 7th, 2011, 04:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Bad News: spark plug electrode covered in oil

So while I was working on the Valve Clearance Adjustment, I pulled the Cylinder #4 spark plug out, and noticed that there was some oil on its tip. All the other spark plugs are in good shape, and the valve cover seals do not seem to be leaking any oil. So it must have come from the cylinder. I researched and found out that this is possibly a Piston Ring issue or a Head Gasket!

Now here is some background info:
-2008 GT Coupe
-Original Owner
-62,000 miles so only the 100k powertrain warranty is available
-Over the past year, or two, the car had 2 miss fires on start up. I pulled and erased the codes myself. They were just general miss fire codes, not cylinder specific ones. P0300
-The car burns some oil, less than half a quart, between oil changes. And I change the oil about every 8000-8500 miles, with Mobil 1 Full Synthetic 5W20.
-This is the first time I inspected the spark plugs since we bought the car

How should I approach this? Will the dealer refuse to fix it?

Here is the offending spark plug in the middle. The other ones are #2(top) and #6(bottom)
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Old January 7th, 2011, 07:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Old January 7th, 2011, 07:50 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Does it smoke on start up or when you downshift & decelerate?
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Old January 8th, 2011, 12:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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No mods. I made an appointment with the dealer for Monday. And I'm not sure if it smokes on start ups, I haven't payed attention to that since I'm not the primary driver.
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Old January 8th, 2011, 07:06 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Keep us posted, sure like to know what the dealer will say.
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Old January 9th, 2011, 12:20 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Well, if it does on start up & acceleration it's probably valve seals, deceleration would be rings. Needs a compression & leakdown test.
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Old January 10th, 2011, 10:49 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I should have done a compression test, since I had both valve covers off the engine. And also I just recently found out how easy it is to do. Only problem is I don't have a compression tester.
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Old January 10th, 2011, 11:22 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Drain ur antifreez if there is oil it's a head gasket.... I'm betting the valve or the piston is letting oil through!!!! Hopefully the valve but most likely the piston rings..... 8000 miles on synthetic is not good.... I don't care if you use royal purple never go more then 5k
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Old January 10th, 2011, 03:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Well I got back from the dealer, and I'm a bit frustrated, as I predicted.

They didn't find any oil on the spark plug. Just to make sure, I had them run the engine for two minutes in front of me, and pull the spark plug out - no oil. I'm gonna keep an eye on it for the next month, see if it returns. I also got charged $113 for the "diagnostic", but that's something I knew about before hand. They didn't do a compression test, because they saw no need for it. I'm going to do it myself in the near future.

They also suggested new brake pads in the rear, saying that they're 95% worn. I asked them for the measurement, but they came up with some BS excuse that the mechanic was able to just look at them through the wheel(without taking it off). I'm gonna double check the pads, but I know for a fact that they had more than 50% left when I replaced the front ones not too long ago.

And also they said that my battery failed a test, so they suggested a new one. I asked them to show me the test, instead I got a print out. My CCA were supposedly a little lower than normal, but it also showed that the battery was producing more than 13 Volts! Now I know that anything more than 9 is okay, and over 12 is perfect!

There is few nice people at that dealership, that I've dealt with in the past. But overall it's a shit hole that should be avoided. This time around, I got some mechanic with an attitude problem, and a scam artist as the SA.

p.s.: I overheard a phone conversation that the SA was having, and they charged someone a thousand dollars for spark plugs!
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Old January 10th, 2011, 04:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
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On the battery: 9 volts would be a completely dead battery. The lowest you want to get is 11.5 on one that has been sitting for a while. In fact, 10.5 and most chargers won't charge them because it sees it as defective.
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Old January 11th, 2011, 08:15 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbooby View Post
Well I got back from the dealer, and I'm a bit frustrated, as I predicted.

They didn't find any oil on the spark plug. Just to make sure, I had them run the engine for two minutes in front of me, and pull the spark plug out - no oil. I'm gonna keep an eye on it for the next month, see if it returns. I also got charged $113 for the "diagnostic", but that's something I knew about before hand. They didn't do a compression test, because they saw no need for it. I'm going to do it myself in the near future.

They also suggested new brake pads in the rear, saying that they're 95% worn. I asked them for the measurement, but they came up with some BS excuse that the mechanic was able to just look at them through the wheel(without taking it off). I'm gonna double check the pads, but I know for a fact that they had more than 50% left when I replaced the front ones not too long ago.

And also they said that my battery failed a test, so they suggested a new one. I asked them to show me the test, instead I got a print out. My CCA were supposedly a little lower than normal, but it also showed that the battery was producing more than 13 Volts! Now I know that anything more than 9 is okay, and over 12 is perfect!

There is few nice people at that dealership, that I've dealt with in the past. But overall it's a shit hole that should be avoided. This time around, I got some mechanic with an attitude problem, and a scam artist as the SA.

p.s.: I overheard a phone conversation that the SA was having, and they charged someone a thousand dollars for spark plugs!
I'm a technician. Most of the problem at dealers is the SAs. They get commission on what they write. Compression testers are relatively cheap. Check your oil & coolant, head gaskets will make your oil look like a milkshake. If you smell gas odds are it's your rings.
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Old January 11th, 2011, 11:17 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Drain ur antifreez if there is oil it's a head gasket.... I'm betting the valve or the piston is letting oil through!!!! Hopefully the valve but most likely the piston rings..... 8000 miles on synthetic is not good.... I don't care if you use royal purple never go more then 5k
Another way to check it is to open the radiator cap and look for bubbles when it is running...bubbles indicate bad head gasket letting compression into the water jacket.
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Old January 13th, 2011, 09:08 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Checked my rear brake pads. 95% worn....


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Old January 14th, 2011, 09:19 AM   #14 (permalink)
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What does that have to do with oil on your spark plugs?
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Old January 14th, 2011, 01:42 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Just that time of the year when you can't get out so you start looking for things to fix before the weather turns nice and it's time for some road trips.

And damm I hate the salt, those brakes looks so nasty with all that rust.

Will you be doing your own brake job and/or upgrade?
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Old January 15th, 2011, 12:39 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
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What does that have to do with oil on your spark plugs?
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Just that time of the year when you can't get out so you start looking for things to fix before the weather turns nice and it's time for some road trips.

And damm I hate the salt, those brakes looks so nasty with all that rust.

Will you be doing your own brake job and/or upgrade?
When I visited the dealership, the SA told me that I needed new brake pads, that's why I checked them out. The pads have planty of meat left and don't need to be changed. The only thing that worries me is the amount of rust, I think that's just part of a poor design from Mitsubishi. I noticed that they squeal when going in reverse, especiay after sitting for a while. I heard it's a common problem with the car, though.
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Old January 15th, 2011, 08:32 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
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When I visited the dealership, the SA told me that I needed new brake pads, that's why I checked them out. The pads have planty of meat left and don't need to be changed. The only thing that worries me is the amount of rust, I think that's just part of a poor design from Mitsubishi. I noticed that they squeal when going in reverse, especiay after sitting for a while. I heard it's a common problem with the car, though.
I have never had any squealing in the brakes except for when it was time to change them. FYI those rear pads do look very thin compared to the new ones I just put one.

The common problem you might have heard about was the recall on the 06's because Mitsu used poor quality OEM pads and rotors on the front brakes
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Old January 16th, 2011, 10:56 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Well the way most newer brake systems are designed, when your brake fluid level goes low and your e-brake light starts to come on, it's time for new brake pads. Infact your brake light should come on well before your wear indicator starts to squeal on your rotors when you hit your brakes. That why you should never add/top-off your brake fluid in your reservoir.

If and when you do your brakes, they do have much better rotors out there with coatings that will not rust like that and will stay nice shinny and new looking all the time.
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Old January 16th, 2011, 09:43 PM   #19 (permalink)
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What rotors do you recommend and how much are they? I noticed that the front rotors are already warped(steering vibration). Somebody on here said that the Mitsubishi rotors are not very good and should not be resurfaced, so I'm thinking of new rotors all together.
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Old January 16th, 2011, 11:19 PM   #20 (permalink)
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The ones RRE sells I believe they are Centric slotted
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Old January 17th, 2011, 02:11 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Wow, there are tons of setups you can go with, if you want to go quick and easy on the pocket upgrade, go with the RRE setup. I think most of the people here that have gone with that setup are very pleased and I haven't heard of any complants with that setup. I did a lot of research before I decided on my setup; however, do search, you do get what you pay for, go cheap-get cheap, this is were most people make their biggest mistake.

Remember brakes are a very important safety feature, not an option. You will have them and use them for years to come. So if you are going for looks as well as quality you might have to put out a little more then a Sears brake job. Most importantly, follow proper brake-in instructions, and break-in period, don't abuse your brakes for the first 500 miles, and they'll last you along time to come.

Another think to look out for are knock-off brake parts from Chinia!! So make sure you buy from a reputably dealer.

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Old January 17th, 2011, 09:38 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Those Centric rotors definitely look great with the painted inside and middle portions - won't be covered in rust. The ceramic pads seems like a great idea too. I'll make sure to get them when the time comes. Just to clarify, RRE only has slotted Centric rotors, correct? While AutoAnything carries both, the slotted and the basic.

Also, do ceramic pads work well at low temperatures? And what's the difference/advantage of Kevlar pads?

Thanks for the help.
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Old January 17th, 2011, 09:52 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Those Centric rotors definitely look great with the painted inside and middle portions - won't be covered in rust. The ceramic pads seems like a great idea too. I'll make sure to get them when the time comes. Just to clarify, RRE only has slotted Centric rotors, correct? While AutoAnything carries both, the slotted and the basic.

Also, do ceramic pads work well at low temperatures? And what's the difference/advantage of Kevlar pads?

Thanks for the help.
The ceramic pads rre sells are dustless and require no break in period that is one advantage. Yes they work well all year round. Be careful with Kevlar, and/or metallic pads unless you like hearing your brakes a lot. They tend to make a squealing sound once warmed up
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Old January 18th, 2011, 09:27 AM   #24 (permalink)
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My favorite thing about the ceramic pads is not even braking related.....the wheels don't get all that crud on them like they use to before switching to ceramic and are now so much easier to keep clean
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Old January 18th, 2011, 02:28 PM   #25 (permalink)
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X2 ^^

Once again, that's why I said you should research. There are tons of pads and rotor type setups, some good parts, some worthless parts. Mike at RRE races his vehicles, so he is an extreamly dependable vendor as far as quality parts, and information. It's a win-win setup for our cars, he's done the research and picked a quality setup for our car.

That a side, if you decide to go with a differrent type setup, you need to research for what type setup you want. Just because a rotor is drill and slotted, doesn't mean it won't warp and crack. Pads, depending on your use, street, track, spirted-driver, daily driver, quick-warn-up, no warm-up, dust collecting, no/low dust, high temprerature low wear, stopping distance. So many variables your head will spin... It's a matter of choice in what you require as far as your performance level, use, and looks.

I love my setup, I weighed my option. The SP Performance Diamond Cut Slotted Rotors offer the same as a drilled and slotted but you don't have to worry about cracks around the drilled holes, they also allow gases and dust to escape, plus I had them put an extra/double coating to prevent any corrosion and a nice high shine finish.

EBS Yellow Stuff Kevlar Pads, handles high temps, quick warm-up, low-dust, low wear, quick stops, low fading at high-temps. Eventhough they say low-dust, there is a lot less dust then the OEM's, but are quick to clean-up with soap and water. They are very quiet, not one squeal from this setup, and will stop on a dime.

Do they look better then a stock setup, yes. Do they out perform the OEM setup, yes. Do they weigh less then the OEM setup, probably about the same. I would bet the Centric with top-hat type setup weighs a little less.

Lots of variables out there, research the parts and reputations, make sure they meet or exceed your expatiations, you're going to be looking at the setup for years to come, and most importantly... braking with them!!
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Old January 18th, 2011, 02:56 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Someone E-Rep Clovis for that.

I would but I gotta spread more around.
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Old January 21st, 2011, 03:33 AM   #27 (permalink)
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done!
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Old January 21st, 2011, 10:56 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Since we have gone so far off topic I have no choice but to close this thread..


Sorry guys.

Closed.
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