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Pick the Right Plug For Power

Don't get it wrong! Know something about reach and heat range when deciding on the right spark plug to use for your car!

The Demands of Superchargers, Turbos, and Nitrous

Power-adders do a fantastic job of increasing cylinder pressure and heat. This also places much greater demands on the spark plugs. Nitrous is perhaps the most abusive because of its reputation for extremely fast cylinder-pressure rise time. Some rules of thumb include running a colder heat range and using nonprojected-nose plugs. The general consensus among power-adder tuners is that it's best not to use platinum plugs, since this material acts as a kind of heat sink that will cause pre-ignition problems. Other tips include running a tighter gap, since high cylinder pressures place much greater demands on the ignition system. The best plug gaps are the largest ones that will survive; start with 0.030 inch.

For nitrous, a safe recommendation is one step colder for every 75 to 100hp increase in power. So, for a 300hp engine adding 200hp of nitrous, this would mean using plugs that are two steps colder. This is also a good starting point for similar power increases either normally aspirated or with a supercharger or turbo.

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