Why do our bikes foul sparkplugs so frequent? - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Why do our bikes foul sparkplugs so frequent?

Our local dealer states they sold 376 of our NGK plugs last year. And already 43 this january.

I got to thinking and all the Vulcan 900's in my sig needed plugs, and the one with 1500 miles fouled out as a result of us starting in "dewpoint" conditions.

When looking at these NGK plugs, they appear to get fouled way up inside with the only solution becoming to cook them on a gas stove for 20 minutes, and regap to 0.030 instead of factory 0.032 - 0.036.

Any idea why these eat up plugs so much? My stratoliner has original plugs with 9k on them.

-2006 Yamaha Stratoliner XV1900, 13k miles.
-2006 Kawasaki Vulcan 900, 14k miles, Blue Collar Bobber Build.
-1976 Kawasaki KT250 trials - all original.
-1975 Kawasaki KT250 trials - beater.
-1975 2x Suzuki RL250 trials bikes.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 10:28 AM
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Never had a plug foul on my 900 was a 06 classic w 16k on it,you got some nice bikes,maybe @sfair will chime in w some answers

Last edited by MN-Rider; 01-16-2017 at 11:24 AM.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 11:00 AM
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Same here. I get about 15000+ miles out of mine. I do clean them one or twice during that time with a a stainless steel brush, check the gap. Getting ready to change out my second set, near 40000miles. Both sets ngk's.

I operate in a high moisture area, rarely below 85%, cool most of the year.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 11:33 AM
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1. I do not recommend using a metallic brush when cleaning plugs. It "can sometimes" leave a metal trace on the insulator which provides an intermittent short to ground.
2. Plug evaluations have to be done on a case by case basis as the fouling list is a mile long.
3. Many folks change like new plugs for new when all that really does is risk a broken plug, stripped threads, etc.
4. The "dewpoint" issue is one I have never heard and makes no sense to me.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 11:34 AM
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Approaching 11,000 miles, no fouls.

Replaced these at 7,100 miles:
[IMG][/IMG]
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfair View Post
1. I do not recommend using a metallic brush when cleaning plugs. It "can sometimes" leave a metal trace on the insulator which provides an intermittent short to ground.
2. Plug evaluations have to be done on a case by case basis as the fouling list is a mile long.
3. Many folks change like new plugs for new when all that really does is risk a broken plug, stripped threads, etc.
4. The "dewpoint" issue is one I have never heard and makes no sense to me.
The thing about number 3 is that you don't really know they're like new until you get them out. It's a catch 22.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 12:07 PM
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My original plugs looked great at 15K miles, bike ran well never a misfire etc.. I replaced them with Iridium plugs (no good reason), not sure why Kawi recommends 7.5k mile change. I could have left the original plugs in longer but decided it was a good time to change them when I was doing the valve clearance check. I run regular gas and have had no signs of fouling on the plugs.

WB
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 12:16 PM
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If everything is in order, plugs will go thousands upon thousands of miles before a change is needed with no need for an inspection every 5000 miles, but it is up to you. If plugs need attention, they will usually let you know.

I have a vehicle that requires the intake manifold to be pulled to access the rear plugs, so that is something I will not be doing until absolutely necessary! (120,000 miles)
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfair View Post
If everything is in order, plugs will go thousands upon thousands of miles before a change is needed with no need for an inspection every 5000 miles, but it is up to you. If plugs need attention, they will usually let you know.

I have a vehicle that requires the intake manifold to be pulled to access the rear plugs, so that is something I will not be doing until absolutely necessary! (120,000 miles)
Kind of what i was thinking when it comes to spark plugs "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" they will let you know if there is an issue, run rough, misfire etc..

For what its worth, a friend of mine has a victory and the shop manual says replace at 30K miles.

WB
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 01-16-2017, 01:31 PM
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Per the Owner's Manual chart I pulled the spark plugs on my 900 at 7,500 miles and had already bought the replacements. It was a complete waste of time and money as the OEM plugs looked like new and the gaps were per spec. No fouling whatsoever.

Have never heard of a "dewpoint" starting and fouling situation issue for motorcycles. Maybe back in the car "Dark Ages" when spark plug wiring would sometimes short out when damp or wet and so kill the spark . . .

'07 Kawasaki Vulcan 900 Classic LT

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Last edited by Hot Cruiser; 01-16-2017 at 01:53 PM. Reason: Error correct
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