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Equinox This SUV offers a smaller, sportier stance than the Trailblazer, all without compromising the SUV abilities.

Chevrolet Equinox
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  #1  
Old 02-16-2012, 09:37 AM
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Default 2006 Equinox Plug/Wires change

Anyone know the procedure for chaning plugs and wires on an 06 Equinox?
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Old 02-16-2012, 08:38 PM
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It's pretty straight forward. No special instructions required. You will probably need to remove the acoustic cover from the top of the engine.

To do this, first disconnect the plug from the EGR valve. Then loosen the oil cap completely, after the oil cap is fully loose, continue to turn the oil cap counter-clockwise to loosen the oil filler stem from the valve cover. Then just remove the oil filler stem and carefully pull up on the cover to disengage the two retainers on the cover from the metal studs on the engine. After removing the cover, temporarily replace the oil stem and filler cap to prevent any contaminants from falling into the engine.

Any decent plug wire set will do. I'm not partial to any particular brand. However, the only spark plugs I would recommend using would be (in order of preference) AC Delco 41-101, NGK 7164 (also goes by NGK p/n TR55IX), or Bosch 9601. Using ANY other plug would be very risky IMO.

I've attached a picture of the firing order below.

All info in this post can be applied any 2005-2009 Chevy Equinox w/3.4L engine.

2006 Equinox Plug/Wires change-firing-order.jpg
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Old 02-17-2012, 06:48 AM
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Thanks man. Cheers!
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Old 02-17-2012, 06:51 AM
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You wouldn't know the gap for the plugs would ya?
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Old 02-18-2012, 02:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Althouse View Post
You wouldn't know the gap for the plugs would ya?
The gap is 0.060". However, the plugs I suggested are pre-gapped and you risk damaging them by even just checking the gap because the center electrode bends/breaks very easily.
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Old 12-08-2014, 08:26 AM
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I just completed this yesterday. :-) It wasn't that hard. My comments from the experience would be:

1) Disconnect the negative battery terminal. Why? It's a good habit to be in. Start learning it now. SOME vehicles, this can cause problems with onboard computers/security systems, etc. On this one (at least mine) it was a straightforward disconnect/reconnect with no issue.

2) ruley73 is exactly right. Don't try and gap the plugs. They have a tapered, pointy electrode in the center you could easily damage. Also - spend money on GOOD plugs for two reasons. You won't have to change them so soon, and also they are manufactured more consistently. Meaning the energy required to yield a given spark, from plug to plug in the 6 you buy, will be more consistent. People will say they can be damaged in shipping and you should gap them. How? They are encased in a plastic tube when they are shipped. Which means, look for the tube on YOUR plugs, that's how you know they are OK.

3) Get new plug wires. They aren't that much money and at least in my case, getting the old wires off was one of the hardest things about the job. Even if I had the engine pulled where I could really get at them, it would have been a wrestling match getting the boots off. The risk of damaging them in this process is high. Because I got new wires, I used a pair of needlenose vice grips to grab the old boot right where the hexagon shape is and "roll" them off by twisting the vice grips. You don't have a lot of room in there. And be prepared to bash the back of your hand when the boot on the plug suddenly lets go. Take off one at a time, match it up to your new wire, take the time to mark the wire with the plug number because the new ones won't have it. (That's just good practice. In truth, somewhere in this thread they have a picture of the firing order and they are marked on the distribution block. So you can sort it out, but take the time to develop good shop habits.)

4) Put the new plugs in with hose. Get a 3/8" hose from your auto parts store about a foot long. You can size it when you are there buying plugs and they will cut you a length to order. Won't even be a dollar. Why? You put the plug in the hose then use this to thread the plug into the engine block. Do NOT use the plug wrench to get it started. You are putting a hard, steel plug into an aluminum engine block and you can cross thread the plug with a wrench very easily. Suddenly your afternoon repair will be a project. :-) If you put them in with a piece of hose, you cannot cross thread them because the hose won't allow you to twist the plug hard enough. (You can also use the same trick to get them out, once they are broken loose, if you are in a situation where you can only get a few clicks on a ratchet wrench, but in THIS vehicle, didn't need that).

5) I don't know what you call them, but the clips that hold the 3 wires together in a group were one of the most frustrating things about the job - getting them open. There's 2 on the back set and maybe four on the front set. Look at the clip - there is a plastic loop on one side that acts like a hinge. I got mine open (relatively) easily by putting a flat bladed screwdriver in this loop and gently turning it.

6) Odd numbered plugs - those on the "back" side between the engine and the firewall - get those from underneath the vehicle. Far, far easier to access them that way. I used jack stands, but up on ramps would have been just as good. Also - do them FIRST. It's a frustrating job of banged hands and tight quarters so when you face a project like this, do the hardest ones first when you a fresh and not angry. Keeps you from damaging other things. :-) I could get at all the plugs with a standard ratchet, plug socket, and 3" extension. I also used a 6" extension because I had one, but a 3" will get them all.

I did this all without taking anything off other than the plastic acoustic cover on top of the engine and that was only needed because it covered the clips that held the front (even numbered) plugs. I've seen where you have to take off the oil fill cap. Not on my 2006. It was just a plastic cover. And it just pops off with gentle prying - no screws or bolts. There are 3 studs on the engine that have a ball at the top that each fit into 3 sockets on the plastic cover.

I worked at a relaxed pace and it took me 3 hours. 2 hours of it dealing with frustrating clips and just unplugging the old boots.
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Old 12-08-2014, 08:26 AM
 
 
 
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2005, 2006, 2012, 34, back, change, changing, chevy, engine, equinox, firing, order, plugs, reach, spark, wires


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