An ignition coil is an induction coil in an automobile’s ignition system which transforms the battery’s low voltage to the thousands of volts to create an electric spark in the spark plugs to ignite the fuel. Inside an ignition coil are two coils of wire on top of each other, which are called windings. One winding is called the primary winding, the other is the secondary. The primary winding gets the juice together to make a spark and the secondary sends it out the door to the distributor. Either one of these windings can go bad and cause your ignition coil to fail.


Well, an ignition coil can be easily tested with an ohmmeter. You should connect the ohmmeter’s two test leads to the coils primary terminals. Most coils should read between 0.4 and 2 ohms. Zero resistance would indicate a shorted coil while a high resistance would indicate an open coil. And the secondary resistance is measured between the positive terminal and high voltage output terminal. Newer coils with segmented core construction typically read 6,000 to 8,000 ohms, while others may read as high as 15,000 ohms.


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