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on August 16, 2008
Over the years I have seen many claims to increase power or milage by inserting something into the ignition system. Usually I am resistant to them. But, reading about the Pulstar plugs I reasoned there just might be something to their claim. After all, the video at their web site illustrates a far hotter, and better spark.

My vehicle is a Jeep Wrangler, with an in-line 6 cylinder engine. At 500 miles I replaced the factory NGKs with Bosch +4. I keep a detailed milage log, out of habit. At 91,000 miles I decided to change the Bosch as I noticed my usually miserable highway mpg (19.2) had decreased to really miserable mpg (17.8).

Amazon is an excellent resource for many items I buy. Plus, I use Prime, so shipping is usually one cost for the entire year. Perusing through Amazon I stumbled upon the Pulse Plug.

Years ago, when there existed coils and distributors, a similar product claimed similar results. Insert this neat little device on the line from the coil to the distributor and said device would ramp up the voltage thus delivering a much hotter spark at the spark plug which will greatly improve your engines performance and your miles to the gallon of fuel. I bought one, and found the claim false.

Yet, the Pulse claims interested me. I bought 3 packs of 2 Pulse plugs. Math will disclose the total cost of my thoughts.

Now when your engine requires fresh spark plugs, any brand (properly matched to your engine) will deliver better performance and better mpg. Why else would you change your plugs?

So I was expecting some improvements in the engine, and increased mpg, from a fresh set of spark plugs. But, I was expecting more from the Pulse Plug. The Pulse plugs arrived and I had my mechanic install them.

One plug was defective and required replacement. Rather than go through Pulse, I returned it to Amazon. Amazon has a great customer service attitude, and easy return policy. (No, I do not work for nor do I have any financial consideration from Amazon). The new Pulse plug arrived promptly.

With a full set of 6 Pulse plugs in, and firing, I took a trip to see if my engine's performance changed.

Yes, my mpg was 19.8, the best I have recorded since before the engine had 20,000 miles on it. There seemed to be an improvement. The engine ran smoothly. There was a static hiss on the radio and CDs that was not there before.

Then, the ECU went out. I do not blame the Pulse plugs for this, but, the mechanic was not as sure.
Prior to replacing the ECU, the mechanic replaced the Pulse plugs on the chance that they were the problem. A fresh set of Bosch +4s went in. No change, so in went a new ECU ($600). The problem resolved.

The mechanic showed me the Pulse plugs. The ends were pitted, the porcelain protecting the electrodes were eroding, and the plug looked worse than the Bosch I had removed with 90,000 miles on them. The mechanic reasoned that the Pulse plugs were either not the correct ones for my engine, or sparked so hot that they would not last very long.

New ECU and fresh Bosch plugs in, I went on the same road trip. Milage was 20.1, engine ran smooth. Better milage with cheaper plugs. No noticeable change in performance between the Pulse plugs and fresh Bosch.

In the end the Pulse plugs delivered nothing extra. So, to answer the real question "is it worth it", from my perspective, no. Their high cost; lack of any mpg increase over cheaper plugs; no discernible power increase provided no reason to spend as much for the Pulse plugs as three sets of the Bosch.

In the end I found that for the same cost, a set of Bosch plugs and a longer visit at my local brew pub, suited my needs better.
2121 comments152 of 165 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 12, 2008
I bought the Pulstar plugs about 5 months ago after seeing an ad for them in Popular Science magazine. I did some research on the web as I was very skeptical over a product like this. I saw a link on their website to a dyno plot from an independent reviewer showing a small increase in horsepower. I decided to give them a try in hopes of increasing my own horsepower and fuel efficiency. I drive a 1998 BMW M3 and I would consider myself an automotive enthusiast. I am also an Engineer and I perform most maintenance work on my car myself. So I ordered the plugs and installed them. I kept the stock plugs just in case. When I first started the car I noticed the idle was a bit smoother. I took the car out for a test drive and it felt good. I thought it seemed a bit smoother under acceleration, but it could have just been me hoping it was. I drove with the plugs for a couple of months, making note of my fuel efficiency. I had always achieved 23 mpg average per tank before the Pulstars, and after installing the Pulstars I achieved 23 mpg (big surprise). So as it turns out there was no noticeable improvement over the stock spark plugs, even though the Pulstars cost 5 times more!

Then things got worse. After about 8,000 miles and 5 months my engine started idling really rough. Pretty soon the check engine light turned on. I had the codes read and it showed "Random misfire detected," "Misfire cylinder 2," and "Misfire cylinder 5." So I went home and immediately removed the Pulstar Plugs and put the stock plugs back in. I turned the car on and the check engine light turned off and the idle was smooth again.

I examined the Pulstar plugs that I had removed and noticed that the electrodes were completely worn down. Seems they are constructed using cheap materials. So if you want to pay 5 times as much for a plug that lasts 5 times shorter than a regular plug, and gives you no significant improvement, be my guest.
22 comments44 of 46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 19, 2008
BEWARE! This product almost destroyed engine. Installed plugs as recommended, drove for approximately one week when suddenly my engine started to stall and engine light came on. Immediately stopped and had vehicle towed. Mechanic stated that one plug ran too hot and destroyed wires with plug also destroyed. Initial cost $80.00, Final cost $350 for tow, new plugs, new wires, and mechanic.
22 comments25 of 26 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 1, 2008
2006 Acura RSX-Type S, 2.0l I-VTEC 4cyl. I followed all instructions, they installed fine, started engine and the plugs immediately threw a CEL. Engine idle timing dropped to 150RPM, car sputtered and stalled, big puff of black smoke from the tailpipe. Started up again, same issue, jumped on the gas and attempted to drive around the block. Stalled twice, idle would not go above 1000RPM (engine has a 7900RPM rev limit). Immediately took them out, replaced with stock IR Denso, which my car was grateful for. All better now, but I don't know what the heck these plugs did. They did not work at all in my car.
33 comments33 of 37 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 20, 2008
i tried these plugs thinking it may work well for my Honda Accord. the car ran very rough after installing, i did not drop any plugs upon installation, but my car sure was missing. i had to pull them and replace them with the old plugs until my order for the NGK's came in. i called the manufacturer to ask if the packing they were sent in was adequate since they make a big deal out of not dropping them and i was told that was normal for them to be shipped in the plastic twin packs. the gap was correct, i can not explain why they were so bad. the way my car ran if seemed as if atleast two plugs were bad, it would barely run. good luck if you decide to get them, the NGK's (factory replaements) are great by the way.
11 comment31 of 35 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 26, 2009
I installed four Pulstar spark plugs in my Saturn VUE. The spark plugs did boost gas mileage. About three months later the vehicle started to experience momentary bouts of power loss while I drove on the highway. After a week or so I investigated thinking I should check the plugs I installed. The first plug I removed had no sparking point and was missing a significant amount of glass. Enerpulse replaced the plugs. The spark plugs have been good since replacement. A couple of weeks after the plugs were replaced I found my oil was low, off the stick. The VUE had never needed any oil between changes and would never even appear to have used oil between changes. This oil use was completely unexpected. I could only figure that the disintegrated Pulstar plug had something to do with the oil use. Enerpulse assured me the disintegrated spark plug had nothing to do my vehicles sudden consumption of oil. I inquired about how to be sure of their diagnosis and was not suggested any diagnostic. The VUE continues to use about a quart of oil for every thousand miles driven. Enerpulse has not responded to my last two inquiries concerning the issue.
66 comments14 of 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 9, 2008
Pulstar BE-1 Pulse Plug, Pack of 2 Have a 4 cylinder Toyota. Had expected to see some improvement in horsepower and gas milage. Did not happen. No difference from old plugs. Better luck when I installed a K&N air filter several years back
55 comments23 of 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 1, 2008
I have a 2003 VW Jetta 1.8t. I gapped these to specification and they ended up frying one of my coil packs. I tried several times to install and get them to work, but they never did.
Perhaps they need a different gapping, but if I'm spending $100 for spark plugs, I shouldn't have to try 3 times to install them.
I hope Pulstar compiles some sort of database that a consumer could look up and see what gapping the plugs need. I read anywhere from .25 to .32 works on my engine (w/ pulstar plugs).
I wish they would have worked.
11 comment12 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on June 22, 2008
I put these plugs on an 03 Acura CL-S 6pd wit 78,000 miles on it. Didn't improve anything. I guess they think it helps gas mileage by making your wallet lighter. Har har har... Stick with OEM.
11 comment16 of 19 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 20, 2012
I put these plugs in my 2011 Chevy Cruze and I expected really great things from it. I ran my car for 1 day and about 30 miles. ON the highway going to lunch the car suddenly started to run horrible, I lost power and the engine light came on. I made it home (was very close to the house) and put the old plugs back in and the car came back to life.

Simply don't waste your time or money on these plugs.
0Comment6 of 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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