Did you just replace your burned out ignition coil to have your new one burn out too? Here is why!
The leading cause of premature failure of an Distributor Ignition Coils is due to a worn or bad spark plug ignition cable.
A bad spark plug ignition cable will have a much higher than normal resistance. This high resistance causes a very high amount of voltage to be generated from your ignition coil's secondary winding. This excessive voltage creates a high amount of heat which consequently melts the coil's wire insulation.
Remember that Voltage = Amps x Resistance
In our example below the bad spark plug ignition cable has a resistance reading of 5 mega ohms. That's 5,000,000 ohms! We know that a typical small engine ignition coil uses between 3 to 5 amps. By using the above mathematical formula we can determine that the bad spark plug ignition cable caused between 15,000,000 to 20,000,000 volts to be generated by the ignition coil!
Remember when you are working on your engine, it's best to determine WHY something has failed before purchasing parts to avoid costly repeat failures.
Every spark plug in your car has an ignition coil, and this may be connected to the spark plug using wires, or it may be found over the spark plug, so there's no need to use wires. Your car must have strong, efficient ignition coils to produce enough electricity to create an electric spark to ignite the fuel. Problems with ignition coil systems can lead to poor fuel consumption or problems like engine misfires.
Sometimes, bad ignition coils can be due to other problems like a low or high voltage battery. And aside from poorly-performing ignition coils, there are many other issues that a troublesome car battery can bring. All these can go away when you install a new battery.
This is especially true with batteries found in older cars as these breakdowns due to the battery's age. Take note that a good battery should at least read 12.65 volts when it's completely charged. A reading lower than this could mean that there are problems with the car battery.
How to test the ignition coil
You can safely test your ignition coils by following these steps:
Turn your engine off to avoid any accidents.
Open your car's hood to check the ignition coil. Because the location of the ignition coil varies in every car make and model, check your car's manual or look for significant resources online.
Disconnect one of the wires on the spark plug and remove the spark plug with a socket.
Re-seat the wire on the spark plug.
Place the threaded part of the spark plug to any exposed metallic part of your car.
Remove your car's fuel pump relay or the fuse.
Ask someone to turn the car's ignition key.
You can tell that the ignition coil is working if you notice a blue spark on the spark plug head when it touches the metal car part.
If you're not comfortable with checking or testing your ignition coils, have a professional do this for you.
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