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Old 08-23-2010, 01:08 PM
astillness astillness is offline
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Exclamation Wrong Spark Plug Damaged Coil and Heads

I have about 76,000 miles on my 2007 sport Fit which we purchase new from a Honda dealer. Heard funny noise nearing home (thankfully), heard pop sound, noise got much louder, engine light came on and I pulled over at my mail box. The Honda dealer mechanic says wrong spark plug damaged a coil and then the head ($4500 to repair, $2500 for an younger engine with 30,000 miles). Have an extended warranty which may or may not cover. I have never authorized a spark plug replacement, it doesn't show in our work history. Anyone hear of the wrong spark plugs in a new Honda? or similar concerns?
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Old 08-23-2010, 02:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by astillness View Post
I have about 76,000 miles on my 2007 sport Fit which we purchase new from a Honda dealer. Heard funny noise nearing home (thankfully), heard pop sound, noise got much louder, engine light came on and I pulled over at my mail box. The Honda dealer mechanic says wrong spark plug damaged a coil and then the head ($4500 to repair, $2500 for an younger engine with 30,000 miles). Have an extended warranty which may or may not cover. I have never authorized a spark plug replacement, it doesn't show in our work history. Anyone hear of the wrong spark plugs in a new Honda? or similar concerns?
I have heard of a bunch of ignorant, brain-dead mistakes made by dealer "mechanics", but this is the first time that I have heard of service people putting in the wrong plugs and not even charging you for the mistake. This is really sad that you can't prove who did this disastrous thing to your car.

I WAS all set to smack you for putting in the wrong plugs yourself, and I'm glad that you didn't ignore all of the good info. on how to select good plugs that is repeated over and over on the various forums.

So, after you pay for all of the damage caused by some idiot somewhere, and trying not to make you feel worse, here is my suggestion: do not trust this simple job to anyone else who can screw up your life. Do it yourself. The necessary tools will cost you less than 1/20th. of your current repair bill to fix this mess. You won't have to do it until you have driven 100K miles after the right plugs have been installed. The job will take you only 30 minutes, even though you may not have ever done it before.

Your story is just one more reminder- if you have automotive skills or are willing to learn some, stay the hell away from dealer service shops. They only rip you off, whether or not they do the job right or use the right parts. A lot of the time they do neither. And you still pay and pay. Why not get your hands a little dirty and save and save? At least save your car from the idiots.

P.s. I'm so pissed off over your situation I forgot to welcome you to our forums. Let us help you avoid this kind of crap in the future.

Last edited by manxman; 08-23-2010 at 02:16 PM.
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Old 08-23-2010, 05:49 PM
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macbuddy macbuddy is offline
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Back in the '70s, I was riding in a friend's VW bug and also experienced a similar scenario. It turned out that the spark plug had worked itself loose. That is what created the "funny" noise. The "pop" sound was the noise created by the spark plug "popping" out of the head. The much louder noise was the air being pumped out through the open spark plug hole. My friend's problem was not due to the incorrect plug, but for the fact that it was incorrectly torqued into place. Once we got it back into place, the car ran just fine.
Perhaps when your spark plug popped out, it also damaged the coilpack from the impact of the unit being jettisoned from the head. However, I can't see how the spark plug worked itself loose since it is also held in place by the coil pack.
I am guessing a combination of events must have occurred. The threads on the head must have gotten stripped somehow, and the bolt securing the coil pack must not have been properly secured.
If the head was considered damaged because of a stripped spark plug hole, maybe it can be repaired with a Heil-Coil insert.
Whatever the result, I am curious to hear how this all pans out.
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Old 08-23-2010, 06:36 PM
manxman
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He didn't say that any of the plugs popped out. In his place, you and I and claymore would demand to see any/all of the plugs to check them against the Honda recommended plugs. If the cylinder head was ruined, as the shop claims, I would have serious doubts about plugs being the cause. I think that plugs with the wrong heat range would have had their electrodes melt away before head damage could have occurred.

Point being, folks with auto mechanics knowledge would tell the dealer: "OK, a**hole, prove what you just told me! Show me the parts right now!!". Well, you wouldn't, but I would and claymore would. No, wait, I take it back. We wouldn't say that because we wouldn't be there in the first place.

The last comment is not meant to put down the OP- not all of us (and not very many at all any more) grew up with Auto Shop being an elective High School class, or the ability to learn mechanical skills after school.
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Old 08-24-2010, 02:00 AM
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claymore claymore is offline
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Total BS with them trying to get out from under a mistake someone else made. If there was a wrong plug installed either it would cause instantaneous damage upon start or not run correctly from the start not after this many miles. And damaging the head ask them how a plug can damage the head unless the plug was too long there is no way a plug can damage a head and or a coil pack. Incorrect installation of a plug could do it if severely overtightened plug was tried to be removed and took the threads with it.

They are trying to scam you if they don't correct it for free then it is time to go to Honda headquarters for arbitration.

UNLESS YOU were the one that actually installed any plugs in this engine.
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Old 08-24-2010, 02:29 AM
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macbuddy macbuddy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manxman View Post
He didn't say that any of the plugs popped out.
Hey Dave, I just based my post off of the OP's details/description,
against my personal experiences.
It seems that this dealership may have been ignorant enough to say,
for instance, that Denso SKJ20DR-M13 plugs should have been used
instead of the NGK IZFR6K13 plugs that were installed, when in fact
both plugs are recommended by Honda.
I was guessing that the plugs were cross-threaded, i.e. damaging the
head. Rather than admit that their mechanic had damaged the head,
he/they report that incorrect plugs were installed.
Anyway, that is my first take on this "mysterious" engine mishap.
I can't see how incorrect plugs could damage an engine without having
very noticeable drivability problems. Plugs too hot would pre-ignite.
Plugs too cold would misfire. Anyone with or without a mechanical
background should recognize that something was wrong with the way
their Fit was running.
I know that Mrs. macbuddy would have noticed, and she doesn't work on cars.
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Old 08-24-2010, 08:07 AM
manxman
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I could have kept writing for hours on the unlikelihood of what the dealer told the OP being anywhere near the actual truth. As claymore said, wrong plugs would have caused serious and noticeable engine problems from the minute the plugs were installed, and wrong plugs could not have destroyed a cylinder head.

With his stated mileage, new plugs were not called for in the Honda service schedule, and the OP stated that he had not paid for a plug change and had not done that work himself. So, right from the start, the whole dealer story sounds like complete garbage. We will just have to wait for the OP to tell us what happens next.

We all wish you much better luck in the future astillness.

All of us who replied to your post seem to be in agreement-- you are being lied to by the Honda dealer shop people.

Last edited by manxman; 08-24-2010 at 11:39 AM.
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Old 08-25-2010, 09:11 PM
astillness astillness is offline
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Well, we are awaiting further consideration at this point. Thank you all for your thoughts. Will definitely follow up with update once something is known. We expect to hear something tomorrow. The the car is with the original dealer who sold it to us (required by the extended warranty) and not the more local dealer who did some of our maintenance. Does anyone know the value of these slightly used 30,000 mile engines out of Japan (where apparently the Japanese gov requires them to be replaced at that point) vs. the engines put in new cars for the U.S. market? Are they the same engine or are the Japanese engines built to last for fewer overall miles than the U.S. intended ones?
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Old 08-26-2010, 12:30 AM
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claymore claymore is offline
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If any dealer is telling you that Japan requires engines to be changed at 30,000KM RUN AWAY QUICKLY this is completely and utterly FALSE.

I think these dealers are taking advantage of your lack of english skills. As long as you brought this car from the dealer and YOU didn't do any of the maintenance yourself this should be repaired FOR FREE with NEW PARTS.

I would contact your local TV stations and see if one of the reporters that handle consumer complaints would go with you on your next trip to the dealer as they are trying to RIP YOU OFF.
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Old 01-18-2011, 09:21 PM
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Fit2bMe Fit2bMe is offline
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I stumbled into this thread as I was searching the net. Thank you very much for this info. I will relay this information to a friend who is experiencing some related trouble.

Quote:
If the cylinder head was ruined, as the shop claims, I would have serious doubts about plugs being the cause. I think that plugs with the wrong heat range would have had their electrodes melt away before head damage could have occurred.

Point being, folks with auto mechanics knowledge would tell the dealer: "OK, a**hole, prove what you just told me! Show me the parts right now!!". Well, you wouldn't, but I would and claymore would. No, wait, I take it back. We wouldn't say that because we wouldn't be there in the first place.
Quote:
He didn't say that any of the plugs popped out. In his place, you and I and claymore would demand to see any/all of the plugs to check them against the Honda recommended plugs. If the cylinder head was ruined, as the shop claims, I would have serious doubts about plugs being the cause. I think that plugs with the wrong heat range would have had their electrodes melt away before head damage could have occurred.

Quote:
If any dealer is telling you that Japan requires engines to be changed at 30,000KM RUN AWAY QUICKLY this is completely and utterly FALSE.
Also, thanks for this. A Japanese Importer of Japanese Cars here is claiming. Thanks for verifying.
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Last edited by Fit2bMe; 01-19-2011 at 09:40 PM. Reason: Typo...Again
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