Thinking about purchasing a new car? Use our new Car Loan Calculator to estimate your monthly car payment!

How to Change the Spark Plugs on a 1997 Nissan Maxima

by Jeffrey Caldwell

The spark plugs on a 1997 Nissan Maxima are located in the cylinder head and ignite the mixture of air and gas in the combustion chamber. Periodically, the spark plugs must be replaced; failure to do so will lower the efficiency of your engine and create environmentally-harmful emissions. Spark plugs on a 1997 Maxima can easily be replaced in an hour or two using a few simple tools.

Accessing the Spark Plugs

Unhook the ground cable from the negative battery post by loosening the retaining bolt with a socket then pulling the clamp off the post.

Check the gap on the new spark plugs using a feeler gauge. It should measure 0.043 inch. Adjust if necessary.

Remove the four screws that secure the coil cover to the cylinder head using a Phillips head screwdriver. Then pull the coil cover off the head.

Replacing the Spark Plugs

Disconnect the electrical connector from the first coil (located near the oil drain fill plug) by pulling it off by hand.

Remove the two screws that secure the coil to the head using a Phillips head screwdriver. Lift the coil away from the head.

Remove the old spark plug from the head using a spark plug socket and extension. Remove the spark plug from the Maxima.

Apply a thin coat of anti-seize compound to the threads on the new spark plug.

Install the new spark plug into the head using a spark plug socket and extension.

Insert the coil onto the new spark plug. Reinstall the two screws that secure it using a Phillips head screwdriver.

Press the electrical connector onto the coil by hand.

Repeat this process to replace the other spark plugs on the engine.

Reinstalling the Coil Cover

Set the coil cover in place over the cylinder. Reinstall the four screws that secure the cover to the cylinder head.

Slide the ground cable onto the negative battery post. Tighten the retaining bolt with a socket.

Run the engine to test the spark plugs.

Warnings

  • Wait until the engine is completely cooled before beginning this repair. Failure to do so could cause burns.
  • Do not damage the ceramic insulator around the center electrode on the new spark plug as this could ruin the spark plug.

Items you will need

References

About the Author

Jeffrey Caldwell has been a freelance writer for over five months and has published over 250 articles on websites like eHow and Trails.com. Caldwell writes articles on a wide range of topics including travel, camping and automotive mechanics. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English from Millersville University.

More Articles

Photo Credits