1996 Mercury Sable jerking feel while driving

Dear Doctor: I own a 1996 Mercury Sable. I replaced the spark plugs and plug wires. Now I notice an occasional jerking feeling while driving. What would cause this? Bill



Dear Bill: Since the problem was not present until after the plug and wire replacement this could very well be related. If you do not have a lab scope, then you should remove all six spark plugs and check the gap first. Look at the spark plug white ceramic body check for cracks that could have occurred when you installed them. I do not recommend the use of platinum or double-platinum tip spark plugs on older vehicles such as your 1996 Mercury. The platinum tip spark plugs tend to foul out easier and do not recover from fouling. The coil pack in this vehicle, like other vehicles, does wear out over time. Make sure all the wires are pressed in all the way. Transmission fluid is also a very important factor. Clean transmission fluid can eliminate jerking when upshifting if this is a problem and should be changed as a maintenance program.

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