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#4695562 - 03/15/18 11:26 AM Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement?
Emanuel Offline


Registered: 07/01/17
Posts: 183
Loc: Venezuela, South America
Does the Distributor Cap and Rotor need to be replaced? My 290k miles car has original distributor cap, rotor and wires and runs strong without any problems. Would I see any benefit changing those items even when my car is running perfectly?

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#4695568 - 03/15/18 11:31 AM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
javacontour Offline


Registered: 06/26/03
Posts: 10321
Loc: Illinois
Doubtful the originals are on this car. Unless you've owned this car since it was purchased new, those items have probably been replaced.
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#4695569 - 03/15/18 11:32 AM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 19319
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
Yes they do, like spark plugs they erode causing a wider air gap which requires higher firing voltage. You can have a low misfire count and not even notice it until it increases to a full blown miss, the wider air gap also places additional stress on the coil.
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#4695583 - 03/15/18 11:42 AM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
JLTD Offline


Registered: 12/15/17
Posts: 836
Loc: US
Yes; when I had a vehicle with this ignition, I usually changed the plugs, cap and rotor at every 2nd spark plug change - each plug change was 30,000 miles.
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#4695588 - 03/15/18 11:45 AM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
mclasser Offline


Registered: 04/13/13
Posts: 2259
Loc: The Northeast
Yep, good idea to replace them. I replaced mine at 180k and noticed a smoother idle and small MPG increase.
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#4695594 - 03/15/18 11:51 AM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
Yah-Tah-Hey Offline


Registered: 05/26/14
Posts: 3483
Loc: Columbus,Nebraska
I always replaced the cap and rotor when I replaced spark plugs. Seriously doubt you have the OEM parts. Don't expect a noticeable change if you haven't been experiencing ignition problems.

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#4695719 - 03/15/18 01:57 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
nthach Offline


Registered: 01/02/04
Posts: 3992
Loc: California
It's a good idea to change the cap and rotor every other spark plug change. while the terminals do wear and pit due to unavoidable arcing everytime the rotor contact goes over the cap contact for each cylinder and the center contact wears down(it's a carbon nub that's spring loaded like a motor brush) you also have ionized air that has a good bit of ozone in it. If the cap's plastic weakens and cracks or if there's a carbon track on the inside of the cap, it's an ideal condition for a voltage leak.

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#4695741 - 03/15/18 02:25 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
Snagglefoot Offline


Registered: 12/31/17
Posts: 1909
Loc: SE British Columbia, Canada
Take the clips off the cap and have a look at each contact and the edge of the rotor. If there are any deposits on the contacts, replace the cap and rotor. I wouldn't bother with the wires unless you feel like updating them or the engine has trouble starting.


Edited by Snagglefoot (03/15/18 02:25 PM)

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#4695785 - 03/15/18 03:18 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: javacontour]
Emanuel Offline


Registered: 07/01/17
Posts: 183
Loc: Venezuela, South America
Originally Posted By: javacontour
Doubtful the originals are on this car. Unless you've owned this car since it was purchased new, those items have probably been replaced.


I'm the original owner

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#4695791 - 03/15/18 03:21 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Yah-Tah-Hey]
Emanuel Offline


Registered: 07/01/17
Posts: 183
Loc: Venezuela, South America
Originally Posted By: Yah-Tah-Hey
I always replaced the cap and rotor when I replaced spark plugs. Seriously doubt you have the OEM parts. Don't expect a noticeable change if you haven't been experiencing ignition problems.


My dad is the original owner, I don't think he has changed those items


Edited by Emanuel (03/15/18 03:38 PM)

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#4695795 - 03/15/18 03:23 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
Emanuel Offline


Registered: 07/01/17
Posts: 183
Loc: Venezuela, South America
Now that I'm starting to remember the car did died some years ago for a ignition problem, I think it does have a new rotor

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#4695869 - 03/15/18 04:28 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
Silverado12 Offline


Registered: 02/26/13
Posts: 3149
Loc: Central Virginia
FWIW I always replaced these parts at 60K miles. Never noticed a difference in how it ran, though. I wouldn't go over 100K miles.
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#4696006 - 03/15/18 06:59 PM Re: Distributor Cap and Rotor Replacement? [Re: Emanuel]
JeffKeryk Offline


Registered: 01/09/10
Posts: 320
Loc: Los Gatos, CA
Replace them with quality parts. I like OEM.

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