How to Install Ford Glow Plugs

Written by bryan cowing
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How to Install Ford Glow Plugs
Ford glow plugs should be changed every 35,000 miles. (detail of diesel engine image by Petr Gnuskin from

In Ford diesels, the engine starts its combustion cycle by using glow plugs. While a gas engine uses spark plugs to create a spark that ignites the fuel, a glow plug uses electricity to get hot. This heat warms the air inside the cylinder causing the diesel and air to combust. Because the glow plugs are used every time you start the car, they can wear out of break and need to be replaced. Fortunately, the steps to removing and installing a set of glow plugs in your Ford are simple.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Deep socket wrench
  • New set of glow plugs
  • Clean rag

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  1. 1

    Open the bonnet on your Ford vehicle.

  2. 2

    Locate the glow plugs. They are normally located in the centre of the engine compartment. The will also have a series of connecting wires surrounding each glow plug.

  3. 3

    Remove the connection wire and set it aside.

  4. 4

    Place your deep socket wrench over the first glow plug. Make sure that the wrench is as far down as it will go. The retaining nut for Ford glow plugs is all the way at the bottom of the glow plug.

  5. 5

    Twist your socket wrench in a counterclockwise motion. Do not try to remove the glow plug with the socket wrench only. If you do this, you run the risk of dropping or knocking the glow plug into the engine compartment and not being able to retrieve it.

  6. 6

    Remove the glow plug with your hand once you have loosened it with your socket wrench.

  7. 7

    Take your new glow plug out of the package.

  8. 8

    Slide the glow plug into the empty spot where they old glow plug was located.

  9. 9

    Place your socket wrench over the newly installed glow plug and twist in a clockwise motion.

  10. 10

    Repeat the above steps for the remaining glow plugs.

  11. 11

    Replace the connection wire.

Tips and warnings

  • Remember: Righty tighty--lefty loosey. This means that if you twist something to the right it will get tighter and if you twist it to the left it will get looser.
  • Remove and replace the glow plugs slowly. It can be very irritating to drop a glow plug into the engine compartment.
  • Do not take your new glow plugs out of the package until you are ready to use them.

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