Question about 2002 Nissan Sentra

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Broke a spark plug off in the head of my 1.8L, 2002 Sentra

While removing a spark plug, it sheared off flush with the cylinder head. I applied WD40 a couple times over 36 hours & then attempted to use an easy out to remove the stuck threads, but it the threads won't budge. Any suggestions ?

If the only solution is to remove the cylinder head & take it to a machine shop, how difficult is it to remove the head ?

Note: in answer to your probable question: I waited about 6 hours after last use of the car; but with AZ heat that was obviously NOT enough time - won't do that again. :-(

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  • geck07 Jun 02, 2009

    Thanks to all who answered; the plug threads were too imbedded, so I'll be removing the head & taking it to a shop for removal. 

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Hello rite this is 1 ive actually done my self on my audi a3 .u need a nice size rachet extention bar with a torx bit(most car parts place stock these should cost about £10) on the end of the bar(similar to a star but with 6ix points on it and made of hard metal)place it into the cyclinder head in the middle of the rest of the spark plug and tap the end of the bar with a hammer not hard though literally tap it then turn the plug out of the head there not made of that harder metal plugs plus ull have a few mre attempts than an eazy out ..remember right for tight left for loose..hope this helps










Posted on May 21, 2009

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If you have the nerve you could try using a screw extractor

Get an old plug saw it off at the same point as the other one sheared aan use it for a dummy run

Take a drill and make a hole down the centre big enough for the screw extractor (They come in different sizes and a set is quite cheap)

See if you can obtain a reasonable grip with the screw extractor

Make sure you do not drill right down to the porcilain other wise on the real attempt you will end up with the broken bits in the piston bores.

If you go for it then coat the area around the broken plug top with grease to catch any swarf when you use the drill

Clean up the area and then apply some heat to the block area not the plug give it a few minutes and then try the extractor

If that does not work then it is a workshop job

Posted on May 21, 2009

  • Tom
    Tom May 27, 2009

    Really concerned about putting a torx bit into the end of the damaged plug and giving it a tap .



    If the porcelain tip breaks the end of the snapped plug you have instant scoring of the barrel when you first start the engine up



    That is a lot more expensive than even taking the head off to get the old plug out

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Use more tork?

Posted on May 21, 2009

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Fig. On the 5VZ-FE engine, you must remove the coil for access to the spark plug

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Fig. Use a 3 / 8 in. ratchet, a locking extension, and a spark plug socket to reach the spark plugs which are deep down in the cylinder head

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  3. On engines with coil-over-plug ignition, remove the ignition coil for access to the spark plug. For additional information, please refer to the following topic(s): Engine Electrical, Ignition Coil.
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WARNING It is recommended that you NOT use a flexible extension on the socket. Use of a flexible extension may allow a shear force to be applied to the plug. A shear force could break the plug off in the cylinder head, leading to costly and frustrating repairs.
To install:
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  2. Using a wire feeler gauge, check and adjust the spark plug gap. When using a gauge, the proper size should pass between the electrodes with a slight drag. The next larger size should not be able to pass while the next smaller size should pass freely.
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  1. On V-6 models only, remove the windshield wiper/motor module assembly from the vehicle for access to the spark plugs on the firewall side.
  2. Carefully twist the spark plug wire boot to loosen it, then pull upward and remove the boot from the plug. Be sure to pull on the boot and not on the wire, otherwise the connector located inside the boot may become separated.
  3. Using compressed air, blow any water or debris from the spark plug well to assure that no harmful contaminants are allowed to enter the combustion chamber when the spark plug is removed. If compressed air is not available, use a rag or a brush to clean the area.
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  1. Using a spark plug socket that is equipped with a rubber insert to properly hold the plug, turn the spark plug counterclockwise to loosen and remove the spark plug from the bore.
WARNING Be sure not to use a flexible extension on the socket. Use of a flexible extension may allow a shear force to be applied to the plug. A shear force could break the plug off in the cylinder head, leading to costly and frustrating repairs.To install:
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  2. Using a wire feeler gauge, check and adjust the spark plug gap. When using a gauge, the proper size should pass between the electrodes with a slight drag. The next larger size should not be able to pass while the next smaller size should pass freely.
  3. Carefully thread the plug into the bore by hand. If resistance is felt before the plug is almost completely threaded, back the plug out and begin threading again. In small, hard to reach areas, an old spark plug wire and boot could be used as a threading tool. The boot will hold the plug while you twist the end of the wire and the wire is supple enough to twist before it would allow the plug to crossthread.
WARNING Do not use the spark plug socket to thread the plugs. Always carefully thread the plug by hand or using an old plug wire to prevent the possibility of crossthreading and damaging the cylinder head bore.
  1. Carefully tighten the spark plug. If the plug you are installing is equipped with a crush washer, seat the plug, then tighten about 1/4 turn to crush the washer. If you are installing a tapered seat plug, tighten the plug to specifications provided by the vehicle or plug manufacturer.
  2. Apply a small amount of silicone dielectric compound to the end of the spark plug lead or inside the spark plug boot to prevent sticking, then install the boot to the spark plug and push until it clicks into place. The click may be felt or heard, then gently pull back on the boot to assure proper contact.

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