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Old 07-21-2009, 11:45 AM
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Kansas City, KS
Posts: 6
rptr182 is on a distinguished road
Arrow Battery / Spark Plug DIY

I know there are multiple posts regarding both of these tasks, but I thought I might share my findings if other people had the same questions I did after reading many of the other posts. I've had my X for almost a year and sadly it's ready for the artist formerly known as "Inspection II".

I've had nothing but good luck with Optima batteries in the past, so I decided to replace the OEM with something a little more powerful. I chose the Red Top 34R (Make sure the battery has the side hold down points!!) which is just a tad taller, but fits almost perfectly in the existing battery well.

I have a 2005 4.4i, and the well had multiple points to place the battery hold down, making the smaller battery fit pretty easily. I had to put a small block of wood between it and the battery, but fit very well after tightened down.

Since I have the air suspension in the rear, I had to do a few mod's to keep the positive terminal from hitting the bottom of the pump. I had to use two M8-1.25 nuts under the front anchors to hold the pump up just a bit. Since this is held down by bolts, run the bolts through the pump bracket, place the nuts on the bolts once they are through and almost tighten them down all the way, then lower the pump into place and tighten the bolts into the anchors. You can also just use 3 or 4 washers per bolt and it will fix the clearance problem.

The second thing I had to do was remove the plastic spare lift to gain that clearance back so the floor would fit flush. This can be removed with a HEX 8.

*The battery was replaced after slow starts and after it was dead after 3 days of sitting. I suggest getting it tested for free somewhere before committing to a new battery. I also have a picture of the installed battery. If you want to see it I can email it to you directly.

Spark Plugs:
I went with the stock NGK's from Advance Auto, fighting back the urge to use iridium based on some of the issues people have had with them. The stealer quoted 16.99 per plug, which was a full $10 higher than AA.

Most of the other posts I have found don't show pictures of the 4.4i that I have, and since I didn't have a camera handy I couldn't either. I can post some if someone runs into problems, though the procedure wasn't too tough.

The first thing is removing all the sound deadening covers. This can be done with a set of metric allen wrenches for the top cover, and the side covers can be removed by gently pulling them straight up on each end (they snap into the valve cover).

After that, removal of all the plugs is a simple task, but I recommend doing them one at a time.

1.) Loosen the coil hold down brackets using a 5mm 1/4" socket, and spin so it's vertical allowing the removal of the coils.

2.) Lift the lever on the coil to release the plug, and remove the coil by pulling straight out. I found some of these were pretty tough to remove, but be careful not to damage the lever attached to the coil.

3.) Remove the spark plug using an extension and spark plug socket, these tend to also be pretty tight (of course). If you don't happen to have a spark plug socket and still insist on removal, I suggest using a magnet to fetch the spark plug out of the hole.

4.) Place anti-seize compound on the new spark plug threads, which will prevent them from galling when they need to be changed again. Then place the spark plug into the socket (should hold it snug) and thread it into the hole making sure it spins freely using your hand.

5.) Torque the plug to 30n/m, which is about 260 in/lbs.

6.) I placed a small amount of diletric grease in the end of the coil pack to ensure good connectivity before replacing it in the hole. (Make sure you press down firmly until it clicks).

That is basically the loop you must complete for each plug. Depending on how clever you are with your tools, you may need to loosen some brackets surrounding the motor to get the coils out. If I left anything out please let me know and I'll get it updated. I am slowly completing my 60k service, so I'll update this post as I go, and add pictures if necessary! Thanks!
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Last edited by rptr182; 07-21-2009 at 12:03 PM. Reason: Picture Upload
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