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The Ignition System

Since we are covering modern engines with electronic ignition systems, unless there is a component failure involved, service to the system usually includes nothing worse than replacing the spark plug. Otherwise, the only other routine service that can be performed is to check and/or adjust the air gap between ingintion coil and flywheel.

With that said, consider this: With high compression 2-stroke engines, the presence of ignition spark does not always insure that the engine will run. It is the quality of the spark present that is the most important factor. Many performance related problems (hard to start, low power, etc.) can be caused by the ignition system having a weak spark, rather than no spark.

The only sure way to determine the quality of ignition spark is to test the system using a spark tester with the width of the gap calibrated according to the manufacturer's specifications.

Cleaning vs. Replacement
If the engine
will start and run, it can be quite helpful to clean the plug with a wire brush and re-gap to the correct specification. If the condition or usability of the plug is at all suspect, replacement is always the better option.

In order to insure proper performance and to avoid potential damage to the engine, always use a spark plug that is of the correct heat range for the engine.

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