The Garage - Spark Plugs
The E3 Spark Plugs are installed!

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Last Updated: 12/3/2013
Spark Plugs

E3 Spark Plugs
Address: PO Box 3673
Ponte Vedra, FL 32004

Phone: (816) 765-5011

Click here to visit their website.

Summit Racing Equipment
Address: P.O. Box 909
Akron, OH 44398-6177
Phone: 800-230-3030
Fax: 330-630-5333
The Order Line is open 24 hours
a day, 7 days a week.
Click here to visit their website.

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The Dodge Durango spark plug is designed to last between 60,000 and 100,000 miles. The Dodge Factory Service Manual states one should only replace the spark plugs with a copper electrode with the same heat range and number as on the original plugs installed in the SUV to ensure safe operation of the vehicle. That sounds great for a stock engine and somebody who is not an enthusiast! In my case, I am ready for some new plugs especially because I was just made aware of these new E3 spark plugs by watching the Horsepower TV show.

I always recommend to 'take it with a grain of salt' what's introduced as a new product on these automotive TV shows as most of it is pure advertisement of their sponsors and thus, I did my own research.

I found out that these new spark plugs have a unique three-leg ground electrode that is pre-gapped at their factory to meet the O.E. requirements for the vehicles they are listed to fit. No further gapping is required.

Some people have stated on web sites I have been browsing a gain of up to 8 horsepower while using them. I want to see for myself if this is a myth or the real deal but in any case, installing a new set of spark plugs maintains peak engine performance and efficiency. That's in any case a good enough reason for me to check them out and install them before the scheduled service date for the spark plugs.

This is what the E3 manufacturer states:
The exceptional performance of the E3 spark plug starts with the unique open architecture of the E3 electrode. The design forces air gap discharges, creates the preferred edge-to-edge spark path, allows free replenishment of the spark zone with a fresh fuel/air charge, and exposes the flame front more directly to the piston head than other plug designs.
Sparks naturally follow edge-paths as they leave an object. The E3 design presents multiple sharp edges to the center electrode. Sparks flow between these edges at lower voltages, facilitating easier discharge than standard designs.

The E3 Spark Plug

By forcing air sparks, the resistance to fouling is greatly increased in the E3 spark plug. This lowers the self-cleaning temperature of the spark plug, allowing colder heat ranges to be used if desired.E3's distinctive spark plug design has proven, in testing in a range of engines, to simultaneously increase engine power output, reduce gasoline consumption, decrease hydrocarbon and carbon monoxide emissions from the engine and materially extend the life of the spark plug.

Here you can download (22kb - Adobe Acrobat Reader required to view) the
manufacturers application guide for the E3 plug.

Choosing the right Spark Plug
When building a custom engine combination like I did, it becomes more of a challenge to choose the right spark plugs, since there are often no factory reference points from which to start. There are questions of heat range, copper versus platinum versus iridium electrode, and the diverse world of specialty spark plugs like these E3 spark plugs I am going to install.

Big horsepower means more heat, so when it comes to choosing a spark-plug heat range, the best advice is also the simplest, put spark plugs in the engine that will survive. Spark plugs are especially sensitive to heat, and as a result, the manufacturers offer spark plugs in several heat ranges to be able to handle the wide range of cylinder temperatures.

As an example, a mild stock engine cruising around town prefers hot plugs to keep the center electrode at the optimum temperature to burn off deposits that otherwise lead to misfires and lost efficiency. My close to 500hp modified motor that spins to 6500 rpm requires much colder plugs capable of quickly transferring all that additional heat away from the center electrode.

Currently I have been running sucessfully the inexpensive Autolites Copper Core (#3923) which my local Walmart sells for about $2.50 each and I feel that they perform just as good or even better than the ones with a platinum or iridium electrode.

Longevity is not an issue for me as I replace my plugs regulary (about every 15k miles) anyway to keep my engine always running at top performance. This may be a bit more of an consideration with the E3 plugs, because they cost more than twice the amount and money doesn't grow on trees here either.

To battle the heat, I have choosen one heat range cooler for my performance engine then recommended by Dodge for the stock engine. This has completely eliminated any pinging but on the downside has worsened my fuel milage by about 1 mpg. However, this is something I can easily live with!

The good "old" Autolite Copper Cores!

Below is a table which I use as a starting point and to verify my findings after "reading" my plugs. Again, the one step colder Autolite Copper Core 3923 is what I have used until now.
Note: Click here for an article I have put together on how to "read" spark plugs!

The Dodge Magnum V-8 engines use a plug with:  

  • Regular gap
  • 14mm thread diameter
  • 750" reach
  • 13/16" (16mm) hex wrench
  • gasketed seat
  • resistive

      indicates OEM plug
Dodge Magnum 5.9l V8 Engine SPARK PLUGS
Champion Truck
Autolite Platinum
e3 Spark Plugs
Hotter RC14YC  

Stock RC12YC 4071 3924 APP3924 E3.48
Cooler RC11YC
PN 3344
3344 3923 APP3923 E3.64
Cooler RC10YC

Cooler RC9YC

Champion RC12LYC is a longer 'projected nose' plug used in the Dodge Viper V10.

Cost and Availability:
It seems that pretty much every online autoparts store carries them for around 6 bucks a piece and has them available for immediate shipping. I decided to purchase them at Summit Racing because I needed some other stuff as well and I just added them to the cart.

The basic procedure of this project is by disconnecting the spark plug wires, removing the old spark plugs, re-installing the new E3 spark plugs in it's place with no gapping required, and re-connecting the spark plug wires.

Cleaning around the spark plug before removing it is one thing I learned very early in my life. Any dirt that has built up around the plug could (will) fall into your cylinder when you pull the spark plug out.

Nothing should go into that hole while the plug is out. If it does, your day is going to be a bad one. I always make sure everything is clean and I don't leave small parts in a place where they could fall into the cylinder.

The tools & material needed for the install are a spark plug socket, a ratchet wrench, two extensions, a u-joint for between the wrench extensions, die-electric grease, and anti-seize.

I pull of the spark plug boots and remove the plug utilizing my plug wrench maken sure I don't brake them.
I then inspect my old plugs carefully, this is also known as spark plug reading. All looks good and the plug reads a good burn of the fuel. Not to lean not to rich.

I then take an E3 Spark Plug from the retail package and applying Anti-Seize. I am making sure it get's into the threads and install it into the engine head applying the torque specified.

I apply some dielectric grease inside the boots connector and on the spark plug and push the plug boot back on the plug until I feel the "click" of the connection. I repeat this on the remaining 7 cylinders.

After all the plugs are installed I double check everything and verify that the spark plug wire isn't touching the header anywhere and that all heat shields surounding the spark plug aren't loose and are proper in place.

This little project took a little over an hour on a sunny afternoon to get done. The truck started without any hesitations and I will now be testing these plugs on my highway trip.

Well, after 500 miles total test time on city roads, and 230 mile trip on highway I have a pretty good idea and a few facts on hand regarding the E3 spark plugs installed in my truck. Here it goes:

Engine Performance:
I could not feel any horsepower gain by using the E3 plugs. This doesn't mean that there is no actual gain, it simply means that I didn't feel any power gain over the Autolite plugs which I have used in the past. The truck didn't start better or worse, I did not feel any improvement in throttle response, it didn't pull better or felt zippier etc.

I've really kept track on all fill-ups and after comparing all the saved receipts and adding them up later on, the result was clear: I have gained 1.5 mpg by using E3 plugs and I would call this a quite significant improvement over any other plugs I have used in the past!

Would I purchase the E3 plugs again and install them in my truck?
Absolutely! I simply couldn't believe it at first that by just changing a set of spark plugs of the same heat range I could have gained 1.5 mpg which is quite a bit of improvement for my performance engine.

In any case, there was no way to deny this fact especially with the support of the gas station receipts gathered and with that data on hand, it doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure out that these spark plugs pay for themselves in a very short time.

The saved time during the install because you don't have to gap or index them is also a nice convenient bonus I certainly can appreciate. I'll give the E3 Spark Plugs for my truck the stamp of approval!

This project was completed on 04-28-2010

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