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Northstar Engines and System Technical Discussion Discussion, spark plug wires in Cadillac Engine Technical Discussion; I need to replace the spark plug wires on my 95 SLS. What do you suggest ... Delco, Standard or ...
  1. #1
    Gene Cochran is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    spark plug wires

    I need to replace the spark plug wires on my 95 SLS. What do you suggest ... Delco, Standard or any other "Lifetime" brand.
    Apparently the Northstar is very sensitive when it comes to plugs ... how about the wires?

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    Katshot's Avatar
    Katshot is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Welcome aboard.
    ALL Cadillac engines from '85 up are VERY touchy about plug wires. That's why I recommend replacing the wires everytime you do plugs.

  4. #3
    JJhomer83's Avatar
    JJhomer83 is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by Katshot
    Welcome aboard.
    ALL Cadillac engines from '85 up are VERY touchy about plug wires. That's why I recommend replacing the wires everytime you do plugs.
    I don't know much about plugs and wires so im going to ask a queston how often should you change the plugs and wires???/

  5. #4
    jonrodman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by JJhomer83
    I don't know much about plugs and wires so im going to ask a queston how often should you change the plugs and wires???/

    Supposedly people are supposed to change them every 100,000 miles regardless of wether you need them or not. I have not driven that far with mine yet. Has anyone had any actual experience with longevity of Plugs and Wires.

    My engine is coming out this week for a blower motor and bezel replacement. I was thinking that this would be a good time for a tune up. I am leaning towards Factory plus and wires. Any opinions?

    Jon
    96STS

  6. #5
    miishmiish is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by jonrodman
    Supposedly people are supposed to change them every 100,000 miles regardless of wether you need them or not. I have not driven that far with mine yet. Has anyone had any actual experience with longevity of Plugs and Wires.

    My engine is coming out this week for a blower motor and bezel replacement. I was thinking that this would be a good time for a tune up. I am leaning towards Factory plus and wires. Any opinions?

    Jon
    96STS
    I just replaced my plugs today at 85k (why wait) and I don't notice a difference. It is a tiny bit smoother and quieter but nothing major. I think I need to change the wires too. Use Bosch Platinum. They are an excellent brand for plugs and they come sized for your car already at less than $2 a pop. Do you know if changing the wires is really helpful?

  7. #6
    jonrodman is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by miishmiish
    I just replaced my plugs today at 85k (why wait) and I don't notice a difference. It is a tiny bit smoother and quieter but nothing major. I think I need to change the wires too. Use Bosch Platinum. They are an excellent brand for plugs and they come sized for your car already at less than $2 a pop. Do you know if changing the wires is really helpful?
    On non-Northstar engines I have had spark plug wires go bad. Sometimes they short out and arc in damp weather and sometimes the insides tended to burn out. Two cars ago I had a Mercury Sable. Every 100,000 miles the coil wire would become fried. The end where it attached to the coil would have become totally burnt and crispy on the inside of the wire and the spark would not go through it. I drove the car about 260,000 miles and had that happen more than once. Years ago I had a jeep and in the dark on damp days the sparkplug wires had little twinkles all over them as the sparks jumped out of the wires. It was quite a site.

    I am willing to guess that even in the Northstar engines by 100,000 miles the wires will not be as good as new. Either the resistance will have changed, or the insulation will be weakening. Maybe the connection where they hook to the plug or coil will be deteriorating. Maybe this is significant before 100,000 miles and maybe it does not happen for 20 years. I really don't know.

    Jon
    96STS

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    miishmiish is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by jonrodman
    Supposedly people are supposed to change them every 100,000 miles regardless of wether you need them or not. I have not driven that far with mine yet. Has anyone had any actual experience with longevity of Plugs and Wires.

    My engine is coming out this week for a blower motor and bezel replacement. I was thinking that this would be a good time for a tune up. I am leaning towards Factory plus and wires. Any opinions?

    Jon
    96STS
    Well I changed my wires today and it is a big difference. For me, it was more of an improvement in performance than when I changed the plugs alone a couple days ago. Also, the wires were factory original and i am at 85k. It was definitly time to change them. I think that when they say that caddys go up to 100,000 miles before changing plugs, I think it's just for the plugs. The wires need changing sooner than that. I bought some brand at autozone for 60 bucks (they were out of bosch) and they were thicker than the factory wires. So far so good.

  9. #8
    Snyder81 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: spark plug wires

    I looked at my wires tonight in my 1996 Deville Concours with 25,000 miles and it turns out a MOUSE chewed through spark plug wire number 8. He chewed ALL the way to the wire and the wire itself looks frayed. Should I got OEM or is it a big rip off? I figure I'll just replace them all if I'm going to bother. There is MOUSE CRAP right by where the plug wires go down into the spark plug holes. Is there anything else I should be checking on?

  10. #9
    CadCrazy is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: spark plug wires

    How about a mouse trap ...Not the poison...Theyll just crawl in a wall and stink for a month

  11. #10
    miishmiish is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by Snyder81
    I looked at my wires tonight in my 1996 Deville Concours with 25,000 miles and it turns out a MOUSE chewed through spark plug wire number 8. He chewed ALL the way to the wire and the wire itself looks frayed. Should I got OEM or is it a big rip off? I figure I'll just replace them all if I'm going to bother. There is MOUSE CRAP right by where the plug wires go down into the spark plug holes. Is there anything else I should be checking on?
    Where did you find a 96 deville with only 25K?????
    Yeah, change all of the wires. The price the dealership will charge for one wire is high. Just buy a set of aftermarket wires. I have the same car (higher miles) and I notice a difference now that I changed the whole set (w/ aftermarket)

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    growe3 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    I reccommend OEM only for the Northstar. It cost me about $80 for the set.

    Try the link below for discounts from a Cadillac dealer. I have made many purchases from this site and usually the price is about 40% below dealer list prices.




    http://www.partszoneonline.com/index.php

  13. #12
    CadCrazy is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by growe3
    I reccommend OEM only for the Northstar. It cost me about $80 for the set.

    Try the link below for discounts from a Cadillac dealer. I have made many purchases from this site and usually the price is about 40% below dealer list prices.




    http://www.partszoneonline.com/index.php
    I tryed your link and for my 98 STS they want 104.90 ,I did not feel that was much of a deal....

  14. #13
    Snyder81 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by miishmiish
    Where did you find a 96 deville with only 25K?????
    Yeah, change all of the wires. The price the dealership will charge for one wire is high. Just buy a set of aftermarket wires. I have the same car (higher miles) and I notice a difference now that I changed the whole set (w/ aftermarket)
    I found it in Florida There are some sweet deals on low mileage Cadillacs down there. Also, I have a friend who works for a GM dealerships part department, so I can get parts at close to cost. Should I go OEM if I can get them this cheap?

    Edit: I also found a 91 Deville with 37,000 original miles on it while I was down there. They were asking $5,000, but I never got to see the car, so I don't know what kind of shape it was in. The 96 DeVille Concours I bought only had 23,000 miles and I paid $10,500.

  15. #14
    growe3's Avatar
    growe3 is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Quote Originally Posted by CadCrazy
    I tryed your link and for my 98 STS they want 104.90 ,I did not feel that was much of a deal....
    Hi Cad Crazy, yes you are right, the set is $104 for the 1998 (list is $152). That is a 49% discount from over the counter at a dealership. I also notice that the set for my 1993 STS have risen by about $8 to $93. Cadilac parts are a little pricey for some things.

    There are a few other sites out in the web that may be cheaper. I am partial to OEM on some items, such as these ignition wire sets.

    Almost any gasket for the Northstar will need to come from Cadillac.

    Anyone else have a site, they have bought from, to reccommend?

    Just trying to help others who work on their own cars, save some money to buy gas and go cruising.

    PS
    I had to replace the headgaskets and do the Timesert repair recently. I priced my replacement parts at several local dealerships then bought them online throught the link I posted. Overall I saved 40% (that is even with the shipping charges).

  16. #15
    Katshot's Avatar
    Katshot is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: spark plug wires

    Cars that advertise 100K mile intervals for "tune-ups" are refering to the plugs. Those cars use Platinum-tipped plugs and they should easily last 100K. The ignition wires will last that long too if they are undisturbed. Unfortunately, mechanics LOVE to move stuff out of their way when doing work and don't always move it back when done and this sometimes causes chaffing on the wires and premature failure. The reason I suggest replacing wires everytime you do plugs on '85-up Cadillac engines is that they are VERY picky about thier secondary ignition parts condition. Even the SLIGHTEST defect within the secondary system (coil(s), wires, plugs, etc.) will cause a miss, stumble, rough idle, etc. And even a fairly careful mechanic can EASILY cause a small amount of damage to the ignition wires when R&Ring them to do plug replacement. So over the years I've found that it's just easier to do wires WITH the plugs to assure optimum results.

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