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  1. #1

    2008 RXP 215. Oil on spark plug(s) causing misfire. Diagnostic procedure? Cause(s)?

    I am the original owner of my 2008 SeaDoo RXP 215 HP. The ski has accumulated 401 hours of use. I have noticed a ‘slight’ misfire between about 4000 and 5000 RPM over the last 2-3 uses. Yesterday I put the ski in the water, and knew immediately upon starting the ski that it was not firing on all cylinders. I took the ski back out of the water, and removed the spark plugs. Before I removed the spark plugs I noticed what looked like small accumulations of oil in the spark plug wells. The front spark plug tip looked pretty much clean and perfect. The middle plug ‘might’ have had just a little oil on it, but not nearly enough to cause any problems. However, the rear plug clearly had enough oil on the tip to prevent the plug from sparking or firing. So, I cleaned and reinstalled all the plugs, started the motor with the hose attached, and the engine seemed to be running fine, firing on all 3 cylinders. I let it run just long enough for a short flush. I did not remove and recheck the plugs after the aforementioned procedure.

    So, the main reason for my post is to try to find an easy way for me to diagnose, as accurately as possible, what is causing my plug(s) to become oily, thereby causing the ski to run improperly.

    I have heard that a cause for the problem may be that my rings have gone out, or are going out. I have also read that performing a compression check can shed some light on whether, or not, this is the cause of my problem.

    I have also heard that the valve seals, or valve seats could be the problem. Would a compression check detect defective or leaky valve seals / seats? If so, is there a way to distinguish between a compression reading that is caused by faulty rings, and a compression reading that is caused by faulty valve seats / seals?

    I am hesitant to let anyone except a particular SeaDoo dealership work on the ski, as they have always seemed pretty straight forward. If anyone has any ballpark figures as to what a dealership may charge to repair the different things which may be causing the problem, that information would be welcome as well.

    Please feel free to note any possible problems, diagnostic procedures, as well as corresponding solutions, which I may not have thought of or mentioned above, that may be the cause of my problem.

    I look forward to any and all responses, so thanks very much in advance for any contribution(s).



  2. #2

    Join Date
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    Leak down test to check rings..

  3. #3

    Problem Solved. It was not the engine. Replaced spark plug pipes, valve cover gasket.

    Turns out the problem was a leaky seal at the top of a 'Spark plug pipe'. The seal was leaking oil into the spark plug well. When I was taking out the spark plug, oil got on the plug as I was pulling it out of the spark plug well. So, presumably, there was no oil on the spark plug when it was screwed into the engine. So, then WHY the misfire. Well, I 'think' it was oil getting on the coil pack. Also, there was a coil pack that was cracked. So, we replaced the cracked coil pack, the valve cover gasket, and 6 screws that had built in grommets. I have a little over 100 pictures, but I can only upload a few here.
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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by dolphinride View Post
    I have a little over 100 pictures, but I can only upload a few here.
    I sent you a PM but not sure that it went through (I'm new here). I have a similar issue with my 2006 Challenger 180 4-Tec. The best shop around here could only guess at the problem so I pulled the plugs and found #3 cylinder plug electrode saturated in fresh oil! Compression is good so looks like I need to replace the plug pipe and valve cover gasket, etc.

    I'd love to see some of the pictures that you took of replacing the plug tube!!

  5. #5
    ncdoo's Avatar
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    A leaking spark plug tube will not cause oil on the electrode. It will cause oil to accumulate inside the tube around the exterior of the spark plug.

  6. #6
    Blackhawk36's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ncdoo View Post
    A leaking spark plug tube will not cause oil on the electrode. It will cause oil to accumulate inside the tube around the exterior of the spark plug.
    Oil contamination of the ignition coil from a bad valve cover gasket is extremely common. The boot gets ruined from the oil and loses some of its insulating qualities. The same thing happens on cars where the coil over plug design goes through the valve cover.

    Dolphinride. Glad it wasn't something serious and thanks for posting the solution.

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