Copper spark plugs vs Iridium plugs. Differences and features

A spark plug is assigned the role of producing electrical current responsible for igniting the internal combustion chamber of the engine. It’s small but an essential component in the car that can endure extreme heat from the combustion chamber.

Spark plugs are designed from different materials that enable them to work through extreme heat environments. Spark plugs can be made of copper, iridium, platinum, or any other metal, making these components sustainable for effective working.

Copper spark plugs are those whose center electrode is made of copper core and are most preferably by car users since they are cheap to buy.

The copper-core-made spark plugs are regarded as the best plugs that provide high performance of the car. However, copper spark plugs need to be changed after every 20.000 km or 12.000 miles since they have a short lifespan.

Iridium spark plugs are designed using iridium alloy in both the ground electrode and the center electrode. Besides their durability, iridium spark plugs make your engine increase acceleration efficiency as the torque is boosted.

Compared to other regular plugs, iridium spark plugs give a quick level of response while operating the car in different conditions. Although quite expensive, individuals prefer using iridium plugs since they are 25% higher in durability than spark plugs made of copper.

The melting point of iridium plugs is 700 °F or 371 °C which makes them eight times more potent and six times harder than copper plugs. Its high melting point enables it to endure extreme heat from the engine, resisting wear quickly.

All those types of spark plugs are essential to make your car have a smooth operation; however, when it comes to choosing which to install can be a challenge.

With many brands in the market, every company wants to show how best they are. This can be one reason as to why you find yourself confused, whether to use a Copper spark plug, iridium, aluminum, or other. 

Therefore, there is an excellent reason to know which spark plug is the best for your car, and this starts by understanding the quality and ability of the material used in making the spark plugs. If you are asking yourself to use copper or iridium spark plugs, get to know their differences.

Differences between copper spark plugs and iridium spark plugs

  • Copper spark plugs need to be changed after every 20,000 km or 12.000 miles, while with iridium plugs, you can drive for more than 60,000 miles or 100.000 km without changing it.
  • Copper spark plugs don’t overheat as Iridium spark plugs.
  • Copper sparks plugs perform better than iridium since they tend to have high conductivity.
  • Sparks to the ignition chamber of the engine eminted by both types are at different rates.

How long will copper spark plugs last?

A standard copper spark plug lasts for about 16000 km to 32000km. This distance is equal to 10,000 miles to 20,000 miles. If your car uses copper spark plugs, after coming to a distance of about 20,000 miles, there is a need to check the plugs and replace them.

How long will iridium spark plugs last?

The longevity of iridium spark plugs can differ from one to another depending on factors like model and usage. Generally, these spark plugs can last longer compared to copper for about three to four thousand hours of the engine.

This life expectancy can be about 50.000 miles or 80.000 km to 60.000 miles to 100.000 km on an altered car. 

Do copper spark plugs increase horsepower?

Yes, copper spark plugs can increase an engine’s horsepower. They can operate cooler and offer more power in performance driving conditions. These plugs are installed as original equipment in high compression ratio engines or turbocharged engines. 

Do iridium spark plugs increase horsepower?

Yes, iridium spark plugs increase horsepower. These plugs allow for improved fuel economy, lower emissions, more horsepower, and better combustion. 

Which spark plugs increase fuel economy the most?

There are several types of spark plugs in the market. Some are excellent, while others are not. Mileage performance is what almost every car driver wishes to achieve; however, without quality spark plugs, all these shall be in vain. 

Between copper spark plugs and iridium plugs, the winners here are iridium plugs because it offers, in a long run, better fuel economy.

Having a spark plug that will not generate enough electric current will lead to your engine’s poor performance and affect your gas mileage.

To maximize your engine’s fuel economy, you need to be careful while in the market. Avoid falling for this trap by purchasing the top-quality spark plugs in the market. These plugs include

  • NGK G power spark plugs
  • NGK Iridium IX Spark plugs
  • Bosch double platinum Spark plugs
  • Denso Platinum TT spark plugs
  • Motor craft Platinum Spark plugs

Which spark plugs have a better spark?

When talking about the spark, iridium ones have the best. Iridium is perceived to be eight times stronger than copper and six times stronger than platinum.

Its firewire center electrode enhances the spark’s firing efficiency. Due to their strength, iridium spark plague makes better spark plugs that need COP ignition systems. 

What are the best copper spark plugs?

  • Champion Copper plus
  • Bosch Copper with Nickel spark plug

What are the best iridium spark plugs?

Best iridium spark plugs include

  • Denso Iridium TT
  • NGK 6619 iridium Spark Plugs
  • Generic OR OCs Solid iridium car spark plugs
  • Solid iridium Car Spark Plug For Toyota OEM
  • NGK LFR6AIX-iridium IX Spark plug
  • ACDelco Professional iridium


Spark plugs are essential components of your engine that will determine the general performance while accelerating the speed. However, there are different types of spark plugs made from different metal ores and alloys.

Each type of plug will have a significant and unique way of impacting the engine. There are those regarded as high-performance lugs, such as copper spark plugs.

Others are compared to be more durable in terms of long span. Therefore, when choosing whether to use copper or iridium spark plugs, you must consider your goal. Each plug has a unique advantage over the other; besides, all can ignite the engine.

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