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Why does the dealer want $500 to replace the spark plugs in my 2006 Hyundai Azera V6 FWD?

Years ago I paid a mechanic to replace the spark plugs on my Ford v8 truck. He had the same type fixed-fee arrangement. After paying the invoice – which was very reasonable – I noticed the number 8 plug (near the driver’s side firewall) hadn’t been changed. When I asked why not, he said “Can’t do that one for that price.” … lol … I now know from experience it is actually quite a chore to replace that plug. So did I complain and make him replace it anyway? No, however I did ask him to give me the extra plug.

Well, I’m going to do a lot of maintenance on my brother’s vehicle in a few weeks . . . transverse V6

Spark plugs . . . Yes, I’m going to remove the plenum
air filter
cabin air filter
transmission fluid and filter
oil and filter change

The parts alone are quite expensive . . . The whole job is going to be my christmas AND birthday present to him and his wife

I know it’s not very “christmasy” . . . but nobody can accuse me of giving them something they didn’t need and/or appreciate, such a tie or sweater which will never be worn


That is really nice of you …DB… I wish I had a great mechanic like you on MY Christmas list!

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It is the essence of Christmas: a personalized present that will be appreciated throughout the year. Doesn’t get any better than that.

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just got a AWD vue. Probably needs plugs. And more.

Don’t go to the dealer. If you can’t do it yourself then take it to your regular mechanic. Changing plugs are not a big deal neither is a pan gasket. How would it take 3 hours to change plugs? Is there something special about these plugs that it takes that long?

Did you not read the rest of the thread where it was explained that the back 3 plugs on a transverse-mounted V6 can require a lot of surgery to get to?


Years ago I had an '89 Grand Prix with a transverse V6. In order to access the rear bank you would unbolt one end of the the upper front “dogbone” engine mounts. Then you would place a long prybar into a casting down below, then you could could hinge the whole engine about four inches forward to gain much easier access. The dogbone even had an extra hole in it that you would temporarily slide one of the bolts thru to hold the engine in place while you changed the plugs.

Typically when I think spark plug replacement in a FWD V6 car, I start planning a trip to the mechanic. It’s just not worth the time/effort for a garage/shadetree mechanic.

We used to have a 2002 Chevy Malibu with a V6. The front 3 spark plugs were a breeze to change. The rear 3… not so much. It took me several days and all sorts of contorting to get them replaced. And then the Check Engine light came on, and I was basically told it was because I didn’t use OEM plugs. So I ended up paying to have them replaced anyway. Lesson learned.

I had a 2000 Ranger once with the 4 cylinder engine. It had 2 plugs per cylinder… and it was darn near impossible to get to them. I had to snake my sockets with an extension through the manifold to get on one side. Another lesson learned.

However, my current 2009 Dodge Challenger with the 5.7L V8 is surprisingly a breeze to work on. It has a total of 16 spark plugs, but they’re all easy to get to on the engine. My daughters and I changed them out recently in about an hour. Saved me money and made some good daddy/daughter memories. :slight_smile:

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Did you not read the rest of the thread where it was explained that the back 3 plugs on a transverse-mounted V6 can require a lot of surgery to get to?

No I didn’t read that. Not that I think I would ever be interested in purchasing one of these cars, but no I am less interested in doing so.

It’s not like you’re going to be doing plugs every week

That’s a rather silly reason to not buy a car, IMO

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That is not the reason why. I did say this car brand i have no interest in period. I rented one once and cared little for it. I don’t care for Hyundai’s. Nothing against south korea. If the spark plugs are screwed up that could mean it is a headache to work on it for other things.

“If the spark plugs are screwed up that could mean it is a headache to work on it for other things.”

you’re reading into this a little too far, IMO

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Hyundais are among the easiest cars to work on for routine maintenance and service.

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Besides spark plugs being a PITA to R/R, how about eventually having to change half shafts C/V joints, and needing specialized tools for wheel bearing changes?.

I have one FWD car (Toyota Avalon) and it will be my last.Replacing plugs in my Toyota Cressida and Celica and 1970 Chevelle is a 10 minute job. And I’ve never had to worry about C/V joints. Changing front wheel bearings in the Celica and Cressida is an easy DIY job.

Poor traction because of RWD in snow? A bag of Sackrete in the trunk cures that. Works in my Chevelle.

I’ve given this type of gift many times. I think of it as a “gift that keeps on giving”. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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My 1998 Civic has more than 280,000 miles, and it still has the original CV joints, CV boots, and wheel bearings. My transverse-mounted I-4 engine has served me quite well, although the job of swapping out the CV joints is pretty simple, so I’m not dreading the idea that it will someday be necessary. I’d much rather change out CV joints than change out a drive shaft and/or U-joints. It’s not as if my CV joints are any more likely to fail than U-joints on a RWD car.

The proper conclusion if you wish to avoid spark plug replacement headaches is to avoid any car with a transverse-mounted V6, because the back bank is going to be jammed up against the firewall and covered in a bunch of other stuff. It’s the same way on my Acura.

For what it’s worth, Hyundai has some good cars out there. The (sadly just cancelled) Genesis Coupe is stellar for its price. I even considered swapping my Acura for one.

You guys are too much . . . !

It seems you’re basing your car buying decisions on whether the car is easy to work on, versus if it’s a nice car which you will like

Here’s a hypothetical situation . . .

Suppose the wife REALLY has her eyes set on a FWD transverse V6 new car, one which would require the plenum to be removed to replace the plugs. And no engine oil dipsick . . . check with the instrument cluster. And no trans dipstick . . . fill from the bottom.

Let’s also suppose it’s a very comfortable, good power, good looking car, gets great fuel economy, great value retention, CR recommended, and has excellent reliability

Suppose both you and the wife really like the way it handles and looks

Would you tell the wife “Sorry, Honey, we won’t be getting this car, because I feel it’s too difficult to work on” . . . ?!


And there will also be a chance to make this statement to the next wife.