Life and death of coil packs

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Life and death of coil packs

This is a discussion on Life and death of coil packs within the Veloster Performance forums, part of the Veloster Turbo Garage category; The coil pack is what multiplies the low voltage from the battery to a much higher voltage sent through the spark plug to bridge the ...

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Thread: Life and death of coil packs

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    Life and death of coil packs

    The coil pack is what multiplies the low voltage from the battery to a much higher voltage sent through the spark plug to bridge the gap to the ground strap that ignites the mixture. Weak spark will cause stumbling motor, loss of power, and misfires. Strong spark will mean more power and a healthy motor.

    There has been a lot of talk about coil pack failures related to misfires but very little said about what causes them to fail or how to prolong their life and better their performance. So here we go with some of the major ones.....

    Power supply

    Without a proper power supply to the coil they'll live a shorter life and will not perform optimally. This is usually caused by bad alternator, battery, or poor power/grounds. Ensure all of these are good to ensure a sufficient power supply to the coils. The rest of the cars systems rely on this as well and should be checked periodically anyway. This is the most overlooked item on a car but should be one near the top of the list.

    Heat

    Heat shortens the life of the coil as well as hurts it's ability to produce the power needed for a strong spark. Keep the coils cool and life is extended and performance is better. This is where heat reduction mods will help keep the engine bay and thus the coils cooler. Many cars with failed coils have been subjected to a lot of heat that could have easily been avoided.

    Spark plugs

    Plugs with higher resistance(13 VT), hotter heat range(lower number is hotter)(13-early 14 VT HR6, late 14-15 HR7, 16+ VT HR8), and wider gaps are the main culprits here. All of these make it harder for the coil pack to send enough energy to the plug for a strong spark. Run a lower resistance plug, colder heat range, and tighter gap to make it easier on the coil to do its job and live a longer life. And no, .028" will not cut it on some tuned cars.

    AFR

    A rich AFR makes it harder for that spark to occur as well. So the stock tune that can get richer than 10:1 in some cases does not help things. Leaner AFR of a tune will help here.

    Fuel used and injectable

    Pump gas is a non issue. But between the alcohol in some fuels/injectables making the AFR richer and the water simply putting out the flame, it can make things a little more difficult if not adjusted for them specifically.

    Increased redline/2 step/launch control

    All of these, if not implemented properly, will shorten coil pack life. Keep these to a minimum for a better performing healthy motor.
    '15 Auto VT

    PB's with slips and video:

    60' ET 2.05
    1/8 ET 8.70
    1/8 MPH 85.68 MPH
    1/4 ET 13.421
    1/4 MPH 105.57 MPH

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    E9C900A's Avatar
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    Life and death of coil packs

    Adding an XWEK and cleaning the major grounding points are the easiest ways to decrease electrical resistance in the system, which reduces strain caused by things such as the A/C, lighting, stereo, window switches, etc.

    Less resistance means coils and fuel injectors don't have to work as hard to function (also reduces heat generated from overcoming resistance), thus increasing stability, reliability, performance and longevity.
    Last edited by E9C900A; 02-04-2018 at 09:38 PM.

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    christobevii3's Avatar
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    How long should they last? I've got 40k on mine without issues. About to change my plugs again though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by christobevii3 View Post
    How long should they last? I've got 40k on mine without issues. About to change my plugs again though.
    Too many variables to answer that but so accurately. Many have gone well over 100k miles no issues on stock coil packs though.
    '15 Auto VT

    PB's with slips and video:

    60' ET 2.05
    1/8 ET 8.70
    1/8 MPH 85.68 MPH
    1/4 ET 13.421
    1/4 MPH 105.57 MPH

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    I wonder what other factory coils would be compatible and offer a hotter spark.

    A lot of VW 2.0T guys use 3.0 S/C or R8 coils as they are a hotter sparking unit, due to lean burn requirement of their engines above that of the 2.0t engine


    Are all coils on the VT 2 pin or did they bump to a 3 pin?
    GF's 15 VT - 2 warranty trips - now out of warranty.
    61,500 miles - Failed purge valve!

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    Quote Originally Posted by BonusParts View Post
    I wonder what other factory coils would be compatible and offer a hotter spark.

    A lot of VW 2.0T guys use 3.0 S/C or R8 coils as they are a hotter sparking unit, due to lean burn requirement of their engines above that of the 2.0t engine


    Are all coils on the VT 2 pin or did they bump to a 3 pin?
    Not sure of any compatible as I have not looked into that yet. I do know things mentioned here will help. Also know they are not fully utilized on the tuning side.

    Coils were upgraded to more pins and different style for 16+ VT.
    '15 Auto VT

    PB's with slips and video:

    60' ET 2.05
    1/8 ET 8.70
    1/8 MPH 85.68 MPH
    1/4 ET 13.421
    1/4 MPH 105.57 MPH

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    BonusParts's Avatar
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    Thats what i thought. The 12-15 is a ground dwell type coil. no me gusta.

    Can you confirm whether its a 3 or 4 pin for the 16+ ?

    My catalog and searching for the new number yields shit for photographs, and I havent the patience to comb every connector to find out (my hyunbdai/kia cat sucks for organizing wiring connectors - wish they could be more like ford and vw/audi)
    GF's 15 VT - 2 warranty trips - now out of warranty.
    61,500 miles - Failed purge valve!

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    If they went to 4 wire coils, i'd look into confirming the wiring schematic, then throwing them in the trash in favor of a 4 pin GM LS engine coil. They have lots of juice.
    GF's 15 VT - 2 warranty trips - now out of warranty.
    61,500 miles - Failed purge valve!

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    geekdragon's Avatar
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    For what it's worth, I took the 30 seconds required to check my '16 Rally. Coil packs have 4-pin connectors, but 3 wires. The third position is skipped. Wire colors aren't consistent between cylinders.
    BonusParts likes this.
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    Great write up man! I vote stickie.

    Can you elaborate on the gap requirements. I've seen this pop up a couple times but I'd like to know what conditions may warrant a lower gap and what gap to try.


    Too many parts to list: My build thred.

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