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Old 05-03-2012, 09:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Plugs and wires cost

Can anyone tell me roughly what it might cost to replace the spark plugs and wires on a 2006 Forester (base model, non-turbo)? I'm sure this varies by region, but perhaps there is a reasonable average. A local shop quoted me at $250 but that seems a little high. I know it's a pain to do on that engine, so maybe they are accounting for extra labor.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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just did mine today in an hr 40$ for parts thats using iridium plugs and bosch wires
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I should add that I'm looking to have an independent shop do it. I've read about what a pain it is and I really don't feel like dealing with it myself.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:23 AM   #4 (permalink)
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2006 NA is not difficult at all ...... ADC has a nice writeup .... and he's one of our oldest members here:
N/A Spark Plug Replacement [Anal]
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:29 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Seems a bit high. If you go with the Subaru plugs and wires you are probably at $150 in parts. Just go buy the NGK (which Subaru repackages) plugs and the NGK wires. You can certainly do it yourself. Its not as hard as the write up appears. I just wanted to point out every little thing.
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:33 AM   #6 (permalink)
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If you can find OEM packard wire get thoses; many times re-packaged service parts are not very good at all. ESP from Subaru, IME. Otherwise just get upgraded quality auto parts wire - but not magwire or any "metal" conductor wire.
-How do you know you need them?
-You should do plugs and remove and clean the coils too.
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:52 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Well $250...

Can be accurate.

What is he using? OEM Subaru(from the dealer) or the cheapest stuff from Autozone?

Is he including cleaning up the coils?

Is he going to do an oil change while at it? (most shops do include an oil change...if you ask)

Does the tune-up include an air filter? (I don't know of any shop that isn't at least going to look at it during...and suggest that "no matter what" they put a new one in)

Does the tune-up include cleaning up/replacing the PCV?

There are other things he "could be" doing as well...
Cleaning up the IAC...
Cleaning up the TPS...
Cleaning up the MAF/P(whichever it has)

You also have the right to negotiate. Even if this were Midas, you can negotiate. What parts do YOU want used? They will adjust the estimate accordingly. Do you want "other" stuff done while at it, like cleaning up the O2 sensor...

He could also be "over pricing" to make sure your car in the shop, which is keeping two very simple and HIGH dollar brake jobs out of his shop, makes him commiserate money. And yes, I know NUMEROUS shops and mechanics who over-price some jobs just because of what it KEEPS OUT of their shop while doing yours.

Last edited by schan1269; 05-03-2012 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The price was just for new OEM/NGK plugs and wires. They didn't mention, and I didn't ask about cleaning the coils. I just did an oil change and recently replaced the front O2 sensor, and the air filter is fine so no need for those jobs. Not sure about cleaning up the IACV, TPS, or MAF, though I suppose I could figure out how to do those myself. I'm usually reluctant to bring my car in for service unless it looks like a big job.

I've read adc's writeup, as well as a few others that suggest jacking up the motor a bit, or removing various components to give yourself enough space to work. I have to be honest, it looks intimidating and open to the possibility that I totally screw it up.

I'll take closer look to see if it's worth my time, but if I do, any guidance for cleaning the ignition coils? I'm pretty clueless in that area.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:43 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BKardon View Post
I've read adc's writeup, as well as a few others that suggest jacking up the motor a bit, or removing various components to give yourself enough space to work. I have to be honest, it looks intimidating and open to the possibility that I totally screw it up. .
You don't have to jack the motor on the 'X', only the XT.

You only need to remove the filter housing on the 'X' and that's a piece of cake. You have to jack the engine on the 'XT'. Like I said..it only sounds hard bc I wanted it written in detail the the way I did it.
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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That price is way out of line, and as stated above the job just isn't that hard on the non-turbo models. Ratchet, 6" extension, and a spark plug socket is all it takes. Plus a torque wrench for putting the new plugs in correctly. These are basic tools that everybody needs to have anyway.

My technique for getting the best price for plugs on eBay is to determine the manufacturer's part number for the plug you need and then do an Advanced Search on that number with 'Search including Title and Description' checked off. Many sellers will list only one type car in the title but include the part number in the description, where a normal search wouldn't find it. So just searching for Forester or even Subaru will produce a much shorter list than actually available, and possibly include some plugs that don't meet your spec.
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:07 PM   #11 (permalink)
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It's really easy on the 'X' model (Naturally aspirated, no turbo) I did it in 25 minutes on my old car.
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Subaru specs the NGK FR5AP-11 Laser Platinum plug (NGK p/n 5063) for the 2006 Forester X; see page 11-17 in the owner's manual. For reference, these plugs are $5.99 each w/ coupon code "MT5" at Advance Auto.

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Old 05-03-2012, 05:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default That price...

Is out of line for just plugs and wires(which is why I asked what else was included).

Speaking from personal knowledge of "over pricing"...

I changed the power steering hose on one of our trucks 3 weeks ago. One of the co-op farmers had the same thing burst on his truck. He wanted me to do in on a Saturday(he was going to be out of town on a Thurs and Fri and wouldn't let me have the truck for those two days...)

Anyway, I told him I was going to charge him $60+part and quart of PSF. The job only takes 30 minutes, but I was getting the hose and parts.

It is a tedious 30 minutes. So this guy made me miss the beginning of a picnic...so I charged him accordingly. If he had let me have the truck the two days he was gone, so I could have done it at my convenience...I would have charged him $20.

So, unless this mechanic is "mis-informed" about the difficulty of this job...could be he just wants to overcharge for it for missing something else "bigger"...???

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Old 05-03-2012, 06:34 PM   #14 (permalink)
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If you don't mind shopping online, you can buy spark plugs and wires on RockAuto Auto Parts. When I did the tune up on my 2006 Subaru Forester I went with NGK IX Iridium spark plugs (part#BKR5EIX-11) and NGK ignition wires (part#RC-FX101). No problems and have been running them for 16,000 miles. The reason I went with iridiums is cause they last longer and provide better ignition.. :D
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:50 PM   #15 (permalink)
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While my son's '03 X was in for other service we had our Subaru dealership shop installed the spark plugs that we provided. The wires were new, so they didn't need to be replaced. The charge was around $100.

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