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Discussion Starter #1
Just like to see if anyone had changed the spark plugs of current generation MDX, if so, could you share the ways and tricks to unplug the coil from the boots.

In the older models of Acura/Honda product, it's simple and straightforward to do so. There is usually a tab or two on the connectors, you press it to unlocked them, and then you just pull them out.

The current model connectors have rubber boot covers, and there are no obvious tab you could feel through the rubber. Since I didn't want to force it, I went a Acura dealer and asked a mechanics who worked there to show me how. At first he didn't think there was anything to it, told me just press the tab and pull it. After I explained to him older model approach is not working here, he then tried to show me how to unplug. He couldn't do it! Then he asked a buddy mechanics to help, two of them working on it for 4-5 min, including first pushing up the rubber boot, then in the middle of connector there seems a tab you could push down, the tab has very little play and kind soft to the pressing, then one person pressing down the tab with screw driver, the other one pulled the connector with both hands, with quite a few times of strenuous effort the connector came off. Now just imagine you do 3 plugs in the back, it could be hilarious.

Now the question is whether we did something wrong here, or Honda desigen intended to let it happen this way.
 

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The mark on rubber cover is somwhat misleading.
Press the top edge(as arrows point in your photo) not in the center or sides, you'll feel as it clicks.

SP connector.JPG
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you Sparky for you kind reply!

Assume the plug is similar to one on top of the engine(please see attached), I was able to get that one to click by pressing it per your instruction. Yet I was not successful doing it on through rubber cover on the coil connectors. Should I simply apply more force or use a pliers?
Thanks!I
 

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I didn't go to my car to see what you're referring, but looks the same connector minus rubber boot. Press the right end in photo will release the connectors.

What are you trying to do? No need to release that connector to do the spark plugs. Don't use pliers, you'll damage the connector. May the force be with you.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you again!

I'm trying to change the sparks as X had hit 105k miles now.
Sorry for the confusion, the last picture attached of a connector on top of the engine was meant for illustration purpose to clarify the similarity between it and coil connector. No intend to remove that one.
Now if you or any good hands in the forum would kindly do an experimental demo by removing the coil connector from the boot and sharing your experience after, I really really appreciate it!
 

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Press the top end of the rubber boot, just pull up.
Watch YouTube video at 2:42, it's for 2012 Odyssey exactly the same without the rubber boot.

 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yes, they are exactly the same except the addition of MDX's rubber boots.

The cobra here is the rubber boots, and they feel thick enough that external pressure wont pass through cleanly, and you also won't get clear feedback whether it worked or not.
In addition to the thickness of Rubber boots, they also fit snuggly, therefore there is no wiggle room you can work on it and get good feedback about it.
 

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Ugh I hate those. They degrade with time and the click click gets a little iffy. At about 100k miles, I think one or two got loose on my last car that had those.
 

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My 2015 has 91,600 miles, all conenctors are still in great soft conditon, non loose. Took a short video, there's no room in there to show my fingers actually releasing the connector. You should be able to hear the connector "click" when I gently press the top edge of the connector with screw driver, you'll get the idea. You can press the edge with screw driver as shown in video while use the other hand to pull up the connector. But I was able to release it with one hand.

 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you Sparky for the demo!!

Since no big plan for the vacation, I kept going this morning.
Following Sparky's direction, I was able to get front 3 connectors unplugged. Rubber boots are getting very hard and connectors quite stuck, no where near the condition of yours. It's a California bay area garaged vehicle, no sure the reason for such disparity.

For 3 connectors in the back, they were so well stuck and because the angle and room to work on, I just couldn't do it.

Since I have front 3 accessible, I'd like to find out the condition of sparks even I'm not partially changing them at this time.
Then I run into another issue, the number 5 spark boot could not come out completely because cooling fan blocks it's way (see attached).
Number 6 spark is in good condition in my opinion, 105k miles, (see attached), and boot is dry and free of oil. Number 5 seems a little oily and smells some fuel when half way out.
Don't know what to do next, may wait some time when more approaches are posted by people who are able to complete the task. Searched this forum and googled the internet, there seems I'm the first one trying to work on the sparks on the current generation of MDX.

Hats off to Sparky for your kind and speedy response!
 

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What year is your MDX? You should be able to wiggle it out. I put new NGKs on mine(2015) 5 months ago at 87,000 miles, no such problem. Rear connectors are actually easier to release and pull out than fronts. Push down the tab with your index finger, your thumb & middle finger pull the connector.

You won't be able to find any help online, but it's basically the same with late model Honda Pilot or Odyssey.
 

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Don't have to bend the boot, just force it out. It'll come out without damage, just not an easy out.
BTW, buy the NGK laser iridium plugs from rockauto, their price after shipping cost is about half of what Acura dealers charge.

Oh, remove the 10mm screw that holds the coil pack first, it'll be a lot easier to undo the connector.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for the advice! Will give fingers some rest and get back work on Sunday. Will update how it goes after. Have a great weekend!
 

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Rock Auto is currently selling Autolite XP5701 for $4.71 each and there reportedly is a $3 rebate per plug rebate from Autolite through Dec 2019. I purchased a set of these replacement plugs long ago and I suspect I paid more than $1.71 per plug (plus shipping). I have not installed these plugs my 2014 MDX, but I will do so very soon since the car has 104K miles on the odometer. After I install the plugs and confirm that I like them, I plan to order another replacement set from Rock Auto; my MDX still drives like it is new.
 
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