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Dodge Stratus 98 - Spark Plugs

Any suggestions as to how I go about changing the spark plugs located behind the first three plugs? I can see them but there isn’t enough room to access them.

I don’t have the specific instructions for your car … you need the repair manual for that. For V-6 and V-8 engines which sit sideways, the back spark plugs can be difficult to get to. Sometimes, the repair manual will say to take the intake manifold off. This can be problematic when the intake manifold is put back on…it can leak (and, you’d need a new gasket). On some engines, it’s better to take the drive (“fan”) belt(s) off, remove a component (such as an alternator) and its bracket, and reach to the spark plugs from the side. On one vehicle, a Chevy Venture, I had to pull the alternator and its mounting bracket, and roll (“pull”) the engine forward, and break the spark plug porcelains (the boots would not come off), to change the rear spark plugs. (There, the repair manual did say to pull the intake manifold). Go in from the side, and have small hands.

You have a Mitsubishi V-6 2.5L in your Stratus. It uses platinum spark plugs that don’t need to be changed but every 100,000 miles. Unless there’s a good reason to change plugs besides adhering to the 100,000 mi. interval, I wouldn’t touch’em. Gotta take that big grey thing on top of engine off that has 6 tubes or “runners”- the plenum; and a lot of wires and rubber hoses have to be disconnected. Forget’em and you’ll

wish you had never started job after you try to start it up. If there’s a good reason to replace plugs, consider replacing plug wires, too- when’s the next time you’ll be back there? Whayever you do don’t disturb/bang/hit egr valve! (On back side of engine near firewall) Replace plenum gasket if you remove plenum.

I have 103,000 miles. I was able to replace the front 3 but not the back three. After reading your input I think I would be better off having the back three replaced professionally.

Thanks for your time.

Good. Maybe a small shop would be best, cause you could maybe sweet-talk them into doing just the rears- some places will only do all 6. Anyway, seemill14, good luck and let us know how you made out.

OK to get to the rear plugs. get two friends fist or one big friend. take off the front engine brace going toward rad. leave car in park emg brake off have one person seat in car foot on emg brake push car back and forth as car tries to move the transmission is in park the engine will move forward when it get to the most forward have the passenger push the emg brake on holding car in place the third person can block wheels for safty. the engine is now leaning forward and you can get behind the engine.

Actually, I think that’s a good idea, boxwrench. It’s an idea worth exploring further. I think the brace you are referring to is the engine mount bolted to the engine and the radiator frame? The repair manual for the Chevy Venture instructed to remove that engine mount, support the engine with a jack or something, and to use a ratcheting cargo strap (like sold at Walmart for $10) to “roll” (pull) the engine forward a few inches for access to the rear spark plugs.
For some cars, it would still be necessary to remove the drive belt(s), and other belt driven components which could give easier access to the rear spark plugs.
One wants to avoid removing that plenum (intake manifold) if at all possible. If removed, it would need a new gasket, and when re-installed, it could leak vacuum.

If it works on the Stratus let me know 'cause I’m putting plugs in my Cirrus pretty soon. You learn something new every day…

yat the way we did it the dodge dealer .you would cry if I told how we changed a head gasket in 30 minutes under factory warr. on 4 cyl.
flat rate brings the worst out in good mechanics

2.0L? Oil leak at head gasket? Don’t say- posters might cry. Plus it’s Christmas.

Thanks everyone. The job wasn’t all that difficult. They removed the Plenum to replace the back 3 spark plugs. Bada-Boom-Bada-Bing!

I don’t think that it was that easy! That’s similar to the expression to, “drop an engine into a car”. It just isn’t that simple!
The plenum gasket was free? And, there’s 00.0 % chance that the plenum will leak, and nothing could possibly have gotten caught under the plenum…a wire or vacuum hose? Well, as long as one is assured as that…