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counterfeit spark plugs? #4717965
04/06/18 06:37 AM
04/06/18 06:37 AM
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 582
USA
Joe1 Offline OP
Joe1  Offline OP
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 582
USA
I was browsing replacement spark plugs for my Subaru and the cost gave me a mild case of sticker shock. It appears that NGK laser iridium are the same as Subaru OEM and can be purched for less than Subaru branded.

I found the NGK on a well known site that begins with "E" for a very attractive price, less than half the dealer cost. It wasn't clear to me if the seller was U.S. based or not.

The seller had excellent ratings and feedback, however, a common complaint on the negative feedback was "received counterfeit spark plugs" or words to that effect.

Are counterfeit spark plugs really prevalent out there? Would it be safer to pay a bit more at AZ or AAP? Is it safe to assume that if the price is too good to be true, it probably is?

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4717984
04/06/18 06:55 AM
04/06/18 06:55 AM
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,801
SD
zrxkawboy Offline
zrxkawboy  Offline
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,801
SD
Personally, I wouldn't take the chance.


"Think of all the Ford owners who will someday want an automobile." John Dodge

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4717996
04/06/18 07:08 AM
04/06/18 07:08 AM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 8,365
Illinois
mrsilv04 Offline
mrsilv04  Offline
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 8,365
Illinois
Is Rock Auto an option?


2004 Silverado - on its 3rd Jasper engine in less than one year.
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718007
04/06/18 07:22 AM
04/06/18 07:22 AM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 2,340
SE British Columbia, Canada
Snagglefoot Offline
Snagglefoot  Offline
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 2,340
SE British Columbia, Canada
Do we think that Subaru actually owns a spare plug factory?


If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718010
04/06/18 07:26 AM
04/06/18 07:26 AM
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 19,921
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Trav Offline
Trav  Offline
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 19,921
MA, Mittelfranken.de
NGK have reported counterfeiting of their plugs, buy from Rock, Amazon (not Amazon sellers), or local. Ebay can be risky.


ASE L1, Master. Deutsch Meisterbrief.
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718019
04/06/18 07:32 AM
04/06/18 07:32 AM
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 9,192
Ontario, Canada
IndyIan Offline
IndyIan  Offline
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 9,192
Ontario, Canada
Ebay direct from Asia at very low prices probably is a bit of a risk. Where are the real ones made? If its not China then I wouldn't bother investigating any more.


07 Focus ZXW, 5spd manual, 210km M1 5W30
18 Outback 2.5 CVT 10km 0W20 "bulk subaru" whatever that is
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718041
04/06/18 08:00 AM
04/06/18 08:00 AM
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 2,814
California
Errtt Offline
Errtt  Offline
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 2,814
California
I recently replaced the plugs (and coil packs) on my daily driver.
Removed Denso TT (Twin Tip iridium) plugs and installed NGK Iridium that I bought off Amazon.
The plugs were about the going price (not some shocking cheap price) and so far all good.

I knew about many counterfeit oil filters (have seen Hyundai OEM counterfeits) but didn't know so much about the spark plugs. Good to know and will have to keep that in mind regards to plugs.

Wonder what it is with the counterfeit plugs - misfires, short plug life (ground electrode wears fast), burns cold/hot for plug number rating............

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718049
04/06/18 08:07 AM
04/06/18 08:07 AM
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,471
The Old North State
Sayjac Offline
Sayjac  Offline
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,471
The Old North State
I admit I don't know anything about the counterfeit plug issue. But if you're concerned about seller rep check out the AAP price for NGK plugs. Spark plugs are one thing AAP codes are still useful for ime. For my applications NGK Laser Iridium less than RA and AZ after code applied.

Current online code HXKKBX gets 30% off online purchase for store pick up.

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718053
04/06/18 08:10 AM
04/06/18 08:10 AM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 2,163
VA
maverickfhs Offline
maverickfhs  Offline
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 2,163
VA


2006 Civic EX 202K/AT
2006 Acura TSX 180K/AT
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Sayjac] #4718055
04/06/18 08:10 AM
04/06/18 08:10 AM
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 2,163
VA
maverickfhs Offline
maverickfhs  Offline
Joined: Dec 2016
Posts: 2,163
VA
Originally Posted By: Sayjac
I admit I don't know much anything about the counterfeit plug issue. But if you're concerned about seller rep check out the AAP price for NGK plugs. Spark plugs are one thing AAP codes are still useful for ime. For my applications less than RA and AZ after code applied.

Current online code HXKKBX gets 30% off online purchase for store pick up.


+1, AAP was cheapest for me too, on many occasions for spark plugs.


2006 Civic EX 202K/AT
2006 Acura TSX 180K/AT
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718061
04/06/18 08:16 AM
04/06/18 08:16 AM
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,100
ME
eljefino Offline
eljefino  Offline
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 33,100
ME
I needed an o2 sensor for my neon, got the (bosch) part number from rockauto but found it cheaper on ebay than anywhere else.

Seller advertised it as "no box" but I bought it anyway and the sensor was engraved "Bosch." Didn't have a "real one" to compare it to. It worked, so, there's that. Shady? Who knows.

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718086
04/06/18 08:37 AM
04/06/18 08:37 AM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 542
Texas (south)
FermeLaPorte Offline
FermeLaPorte  Offline
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 542
Texas (south)
I would sincerely not think of buying those spark plugs. I think that if you really want to save money, go for Subaru OEC or original NGK's from a reputed store. I think it is cheaper to buy spark plugs than a new car.


Always Mobil 1
2014 1.6L Nissan Versa Sedan, 5 spd, 5k OCI.
2011 3.5L Chevrolet Impala, Automatic, 5k OCI.
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718091
04/06/18 08:39 AM
04/06/18 08:39 AM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 5,858
Kalifornia Kollective
BrocLuno Offline
BrocLuno  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 5,858
Kalifornia Kollective
So much of this stuff is "Made in China" as the OEM supplier to the name branded parts that it is crazy.

The same factory that makes the name branded parts lets cases of "blems" out on local auction. Those buyers resell as original parts.

Not really counterfeit, but more "gray market" ...

Last edited by BrocLuno; 04/06/18 08:40 AM.

Formerly in marine engineering. In an earlier life I owned my own petroleum tank truck, and hauled for the majors and independent's.
Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: mrsilv04] #4718102
04/06/18 08:49 AM
04/06/18 08:49 AM
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 582
USA
Joe1 Offline OP
Joe1  Offline OP
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 582
USA
Originally Posted By: mrsilv04
Is Rock Auto an option?


Thanks for the Rock Auto suggestion. I think l will go that route. They have a great selection and competitive prices.

Re: counterfeit spark plugs? [Re: Joe1] #4718220
04/06/18 10:17 AM
04/06/18 10:17 AM
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 4,454
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
zzyzzx Offline
zzyzzx  Offline
Joined: May 2012
Posts: 4,454
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Originally Posted By: Joe1
I found the NGK on a well known site that begins with "E" for a very attractive price, less than half the dealer cost. It wasn't clear to me if the seller was U.S. based or not.

The seller had excellent ratings and feedback, however, a common complaint on the negative feedback was "received counterfeit spark plugs" or words to that effect.


Just out of curiosity, what was the dealer price, the Rock Auto Price, and cheap eBay price for these spark plugs?
I'm wondering exactly how much money are we talking about here.

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