In this post, I am going to cover the steps (and annoyances) of installing new plugs and coils in a 2002 Ford Thunderbird. Although I haven’t received any diagnostic codes in a few months, I was at one point constantly receiving misfire reports on cylinders 5 and 6. While the check engine light has not been lighting up, I can still feel the misfires at certain times when driving.
I might add some video to this post, but as I am taking my time doing just a little at a time during the winter I’m just not bothering with recording the entire process. However, I have added photos.
The Thunderbird is a V8, so 8 plugs and 8 coils are needed.
I’ve read some horror stories of cheaper knock-off brand coils being incorrectly sized, so I went with Ford Motorcraft DG-529 coils to be safe. I bought Champion Iridium 9201 plugs.
In this post, I am working only on the driver’s side (cylinders 5-8)
The plastic engine cover can be removed by removing the plastic clips near cylinders 5 & 8. The clip near cylinder 1 just pops as you pull the cover off.
There are 6 7mm bolts that need to be removed from the plug and coil cover on each side of the engine (12 if you are doing both sides).
Getting to the lower cover bolts to work on plugs 5-8 is a complete pain in the ass.
I picked up a few tools to help, such as a 7mm ratcheting wrench and a 7mm shallow swivel joint ratchet socket. Even so, there wasn’t really a direct any easy way to access them.
One of the lower bolts is directly in line with a plastic dip-stick tube, compounded by the power steering fluid chamber being in the way.
Removing the bolts that hold the chamber in place is helpful (I think one was 8mm and the other 9mm). The chamber is held in place with it’s mounting brackets being supported by rubber grommets.
The furthest lower bolt on the driver’s side (near cylinder 8)
More Info coming soon!