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  #1  
Old 06-29-2011, 08:19 AM
dstoltz dstoltz is offline
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Question Tune-up really needed?

Hi All,

Perhaps this is a naive question....

I have 36K miles on my truck (2008 Ram 1500 5.7 Hemi).

Every time I go for an oil change, the dealer wants me to get the 30,000 mile tune-up, which is like $800.

They say $400 of it is the Hemi spark plugs, and the other $400 is changing all the gear fluids, etc....

I can see changing all the fluids, but $400 for spark plugs seems crazy when the engine is running great.

What does everyone think? Do the plugs really need to be changed at this point?

Recommendations?

Thanks!
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Old 06-29-2011, 08:37 AM
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CHVYKLR CHVYKLR is offline
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there are many "how to" threads on here about changing the plugs. If you have a socket set with some extensions and swivels you can DIY it.

the manual does recommend plugs at 36k (or is it 30K?) and they are only a couple bucks each (times 16). if you are looking for something to do on saturday I'd say give it a try. plenty of people here to help out if you take pics and ask questions.

with that being said you can probably get away with a couple thousand more miles but realize the "plug gap" is growing as the electrode wears down. you might not notice the performance loss because it is so slow and gradual...and still pretty small at this point.

the diff fluids are actually easier (IMHO) and maybe you could tackle those first as a warm up
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Old 06-29-2011, 08:52 AM
dstoltz dstoltz is offline
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Default Plugs

I don't mind paying the dealership to do it, but they said the plugs were really expensive because it was a Hemi.

You say the plugs are a couple of bucks each. Even if the plugs were $10 each, that's $160 + some labor.... $400 just sounds like a lot....

Maybe I will see about doing it myself, and let them do the fluids.

Thanks!
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Old 06-29-2011, 09:17 AM
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It is highly recommended to replace the plugs every 30K miles. With all the advanced electronics and sensors, modern vehicles are capable of hiding a degrading spark plug issue for quite some time, so although it appears to be running great, it will benefit from the scheduled maintenance.

They told you the Hemi plugs are expensive! That is simply not an accurate statement. Although you 'can' buy real expensive plugs, Don't! The Hemi is much happier with the low cost standard copper plugs. Both the Champion and NGK plugs have a great track record in the Hemi.

DIY plug replacement is not that difficult. I do recommend that you apply some 'anti-seize' to the plug thread when you put the new ones in, and some dielectric grease to the plug boots. The Hemi is known for becoming very 'attached' to it's plugs, and doesn't give them up easily. This being the first plug change, expect the plugs to be very tight. With a little anti-seize, the next set will replace easier.
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Old 06-29-2011, 10:47 AM
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Yup....30K is the recommended interval on plugs. There are 16 of them in the HEMI so understand you have twice as many plugs to remove.

I'd get the plugs and do it myself if I were you. I think they are a bit high with the fluid change as well. For about $180 any lube shop can do it.
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Old 06-29-2011, 10:58 AM
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Just curious, but does the gear fluids include the transmission fluid? And if so, does it include a transmission flush? If so, then it sounds more realistic considering the dealership mark-up.

Biggest thing on the spark plugs is take your time. My Malibu shot a plug out going down the highway because the person before stripped out the threads, and it wouldn't hold tight. I had to helicoil the socket, put in an insert and replace the spark plug, and of course it was the one that you have to hold a mirror to see on the back side of the engine. The guys at the parts store said it is usually the hardest on to get to that gets stripped because people rush it. A good trick for getting to hard to reach plug locations with a new plug, use some heater hose. It is super flexible and bendy, and it will get it started, but doesn't have a lot of torque, so you are less likely to strip the threads.
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