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Problems with RC Helicopter Glow Plugs

RC Helicopter Glow Plugs can fail in several ways


Detonation causing melted element.

Recognize and get rid of the reason for detonation (elevated compression ratio; elevated Nitromethane content in the fuel; high Propeller load; Glow plug temperature (elevated rating.))

Melted element from metal particles.

Aluminum particles usually come from the engine's backplate, where they are removed in little pieces by the end of the crankpin or connecting rod. If this clearance problem is present, then you will need to purchase a second backplate gasket.

Silicon Poisoning.

Silicon and fuel blend to form a glass-like deposit on the platinum-alloy wire element, which leads to a slowing of the catalytic action. Though the plug element glows brightly and still offers dependable start-ups, its temperature rating becomes lower (turns cold), causing the engine's ignition point to retard.

If the engine starts having idle-performance issues, you should replace the glow plug. Silicon is no longer being used as an anti-foaming agent by major fuel manufacturers.

Broken Coil.

Because it is not possible to balance a single-cylinder engine to run smoothly throughout its entire range of speeds, the glow plug is known to break every once in awhile. If the element wire appears new, but a coil is broken, vibration might be the problem. Always make sure an engine is within its vibration zone.

Leaking glow plug gasket or stem seal.

If your glow plug gasket or stem seal is leaking, you could potentially see overheating and damage to internal components, or even see the engine power decrease. To check for leaks, take the plug gasket and stem, place a little oil on them, and then turn the engine over slowly by hand, keeping the propeller steady. If you see telltale bubbles, then you know for certain that you have a leak. You should replace any leaking copper gasket. Replace the glow plug if the glow-plug stem seal is leaking.

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