Today I'm going to learn something, how to change sparkplugs and coil packs on a Ford modular engine.
I've been changing spark plugs my whole life, but evidently there are a few little tricks that have to be learned on these newer engines, like finding the spark plug in the first place. Luckily, my second son is an ASE certified mechanic, trained by Ford on Ford engines. He's going to stand over my shoulder while I do the job, to make sure that the old man doesn't screw up something that can't be fixed. The easiest thing would be for him to do the job, but then I wouldn't know how. Knowledge is power. Lately, I've been plumbing the depths of the ODBII codes, which makes trouble-shooting a whole lot easier.
Coil packs are expensive, but spark plugs are still relatively cheap. The difference between the economy plugs and the top-line plugs are just a few cents. He did caution me to buy Motocraft plugs for this job, because Ford plugs work best in Ford engines. Oh, and I'm amazed how inexpensive auto parts are when you buy them from places like Amazon.com, vs buying them at the parts house.
Hopefully, by the end of the day, I'll be a better shadetree mechanic, and Grandma will get a grandkid fix while we work.
**UPDATE** That's done. Found the problem, (a loose connector) but learned how to change a coil pack. The check engine light is off and a test drive shows no misses. AND, I changed the oil on the pickup. The next time that oil needs changing, the truck will have 201,000 miles on it, and it's still running strong.