A spark plug isn’t necessary the first thing that pops in one’s head when thinking about aftermarket parts. Most Jeep owners will name control arms, brake pads, and a new set of wheels as must-have upgrades. However, these plugs are a vital part of any Jeep’s driving mechanism. Without a proper spark, you’ll have a very difficult time launching the engine and hitting the road.
That’s why today, the focus will be on the Best Spark Plugs for Jeep. I divided this post into five separate lists/comparison tables to make navigation easier for you. First, select the Jeep model, the engine, and only then pick one of the available options. The best features, pros/cons, and expert recommendations will help you with the choice. Overall, we’ve got sixteen plugs to check out. So, join me, and let’s see what the market has to offer in 2020.
Comparison Table – Best Spark Plugs for Jeep Wrangler JK 3.8L Engine
Did you know that the 3.8L engine was first introduced back in the 80s? That’s right! Obviously, the engineers have been updating and upgrading it to meet modern-day requirements, but it is, indeed, ~4 decades old. As for the Wrangler, it first got this powertrain in 2007. Overall, it’s a pretty capable engine with a good performance both on and off the road.
Comparison Table – Best Spark Plugs for Jeep Wrangler JK 3.2 and 3.6L Engine
Here, we have a relatively powerful engine with a great price-quality balance. While it’s not the most impressive motor on the market, it does offer decent value and won’t let you down in the middle of the road. It’s not particularly new, but, again, in off-roading, reliability and durability are often more important than anything else. As for 3.6, it’s like the elder brother. Here are the spark plugs for Jeep JK 3.6 and 3.2.
Comparison Table – Best Spark Plugs for Jeep Liberty
Moving on from the best spark plugs for Jeep JK, let’s take a look at some other models. Liberty is one of the most compact Jeeps to ever hit the US market. Sadly, it was discontinued in 2012 after a 10-year lifespan. Now, the first generation was not nearly as popular as the JK or the TJ, and it lagged behind most rivals, especially on rough terrain. The second generation, however, saw a complete redesign and received a 3.7-lit V6.
Comparison Table – Best Spark Plugs for Jeep Patriot
The Patriot had been doing pretty well until Jeep discontinued it in 2017. With it, the company was trying to find the golden middle between a family-friendly SUV and a capable off-roader. The result was pretty decent and that’s why this model was very popular among US drivers. If you’re the proud owners of the Patriot and are looking for a new spark plug, check out the following list.
Try searching something like “Jeep JK best spark plugs” – Google will get back at you with hundreds of offers. So, if want to know more about spark plugs in general and to learn how to differentiate between good and bad options, this guide is for you. I tried to keep it as simple as possible but at the same time share vital information. So, join me, and let’s check out the most important factors that you’ll need to consider when shopping for a new spark plug(s).
Compatibility/Ease of Use
Did you know that plugs come in all shapes and sizes? That’s true, and in the US, the size of the thread/nut mostly defines which category a certain plug belongs to. The system is a bit different in Europe and Asia, but pretty similar. You should always keep the size in mind and make sure it is the right one for your ride.
As you can see, I broke down my list of the best plugs into different categories – models and engines. So, when out shopping, you can either use the threat or nut size as your “guide” or the Jeep’s model and engine. Still not sure you can make sense of it all? Just say that you need spark plugs for 4.0 Jeep Wrangler and let the mechanic handle everything.
Different Jeeps, Different Spark Types
Owners of older Jeep vehicles should go with copper spark plugs. That’s because they implement low-voltage ignition and might not be 100% compatible with the newer plugs. The good news is – they’re pretty affordable and perform well in tough situations. In contrast, modern-day Jeeps with advanced engines will greatly benefit from iridium or platinum plugs.
Iridium is more expensive, but it’s more efficient and performs better than platinum (which is also quite good). You should always purchase spark plugs that fit your Jeep. No matter how good iridium can be, if you’re driving a vehicle that came out in the 90s, it won’t be of much use to you. Checking the manufacturer’s specs is the best thing one can do.
Here’s a rule of thumb: if the spark plug is said to have a lifespan shorter than 50K miles, you should look elsewhere. The most reliable ones can serve you for up to 100K miles, which is the golden standard for the industry. And what about the warranty – what can you expect? Look for a 3-/5-year deal – that will give you peace of mind no matter what happens on/off the road.
The Heat Rating and Electrode Gaps
In simple terms, the broader the heat range, the better. That means the plug can handle extreme temperatures and won’t break down when the engine’s pushed to the limit. Plugs with a low heat rating heat up quite fast and will only be a good choice for the owners of smaller Jeeps that usually drive on highways and city streets. They last for a really long time, though.
High-heat rating plugs (AKA the cold plugs) easily handle the heat and will be a good investment for the fans of off-roading. As for the electrode gap, if you have the wrong one, the engine won’t be able to ignite properly. The most advanced sparks are compatible with a long list of engines, while the less sophisticated ones fit a much narrower range.
As the name suggests, spark plugs create the necessary ignition to start a local explosion and run the engine. So, if this tiny part is malfunctioning, the Jeep simply won’t start. The good news is – the market is full of top-quality sparks that are available at a very reasonable price. You can’t just go ahead and purchase the one you like, though. Different plugs fit different Jeep models and engines. Spark plugs for Jeep 4.0 won’t fit the 3.2 or the 3.6 engines.
Use the comparison tables from this review to find the one(s) that will be 100% compatible with your ride. Otherwise, you’ll have to get another replacement. The Buyer’s Guide is for the more involved drivers. It will teach you everything there is to know about spark plugs and what makes them good (or bad). Take care of your steel horse, keep your eye on the road, and be safe!