351w Firing Ordering: What Is It and How It Works?

351w firing order is the unique way the 351 Windsor firing engine design arranges the cylinder of the engine of a car. It is different from the common arrangement used by companies in manufacturing a V-8. This article will provide a detailed insight into the 351 Windsor firing order.

351w Firing Ordering


Continue reading if you want to learn more.

What is the 35w Firing Order?

A 351w firing order is a 1, 3, 5, 7, 2, 6, 5, 4, 8 arrangement of the cylinder found in a car engine. The ordering begins from the front left to the right. On the left are compartments one to four, while the right has compartments five to eight.

When the 351w firing ordering is used, ensure that a proper spark plug is fired, so the engine can function properly and smoothly. If your engine’s cylinder was arranged in the correct order of the 351w ordering, your vehicle would run smoothly before the plug wires were removed.

351w firing ordering is confusing at times and should be understood correctly. Understanding the pattern ensures that the right wire gets returned to each plug if they are rearranged.

– The invention of the 351w Firing Ordering

The invention of the 351w firing ordering was a result of the public demand for a more powerful engine for the cars in the automaker’s stock lineup. It was introduced in 1969 by Ford. At this time it was introduced, gas was really cheap, and the best model of cars easily topped 300 horsepower. 

When the approach of automakers to engine designs changed because of the emission of standards, Ford improved the 351w firing order and reduced the power output. An example of one of the amazing engine designs Ford made with the 351w firing order was the Mustang made in 1973, with only 169 horsepower in its engine design.

For the next 30 years, Ford continued to use the 351w firing order in the design of car engines. Due to the continuous increase in the price of fuel, all the cars produced after 2014 have the 351w firing order as their engine design. Now you can order a 351w as a crate engine design from the motor divisions.

Do All 351w Have the Same Firing Order For All Engines?

Not all 351w have the same firing order for all engines. Due to the modifications done to car engines over the years, some engine units have the engine design of a 302 even though the engine cylinder has the correct labeling of a 351w firing order

Therefore, the 351w firing order may not work. You can check for another alternative firing order that increases your engine’s performance.

Do You Need a Tune-up For Your 351w Engine?

You need a tune-up for your 351w engine. Since the last model year, 2014, there hasn’t been a restocking in the market for the 351w firing order engine. Due to this, most of the 351w engine designs available are getting closer to the 100,000-mile mark and are in need of a tune-up. 

Do You Need a Tune-up For Your 351w Engine

Some vehicles need a tune-up without reaching its 100k mark on the odometer as opposed to cars with the 351w engine design. Like every mechanical product, when car engines are first produced, they work smoothly without any issues

However, there is wear and tear from using the engine for a long time, and it causes the spark plug and wires, which are consumable products, to fade out. So it is essential to get a tune-up for your vehicle when it is needed.

When Do You Need To Change the Spark Plug on Your 351w Engine?

You need to change the spark plug on your 351w engine if you notice that your engine is acting up when the 351w engine develops reverberations when the vehicle refuses to start when the 351w engine surges at inopportune times. 

Below are more signs that tell you it’s time to change the spark plug on your 351w engine.

– When the Engine Misfires

The engine misfires when the spark plug starts to ignite at the wrong time. The igniting of the spark plug often makes the light of the check engine turn on when it’s not supposed to. Engine misfires can be caused by a lot of faulty reasons, but the common one is wearing out or an old spark plug. A diagnostic test can confirm the main reason for the engine misfire.

Engine misfires result in a lot of faults in your engine. Your car becomes harder to start, uses fuel excessively, and accelerates sluggishly. You should always get an inspection regularly, at least around 75,000 miles, to avoid more complications. This inspection has now been made easier.

– When Your 351w Engine Develops Reverberations

The tenor and tone of your engine idle start changing when the spark plugs start failing. This can lead to too many vibrations that can reverberate to the other part of the engine, leading to additional damage. When this fault is developed by your engine, you can notice your car shaking when it is parked.

– When Your Vehicle Refuses to Start 

When your car refuses to start when you want to take a ride, you suspect there is no fuel left in the car, or the battery has gone flat. However, when it starts clicking or turns over without you starting it, then there is a problem with the spark plug you need to fix.

When Your Vehicle Refuses to Start

The problem becomes crucial and advances when your 351w engine doesn’t turn over at all. This will require serious attention.

– When Your 351w Engine Surges at Inopportune Times 

When you feel the acceleration jerk out for a split second while attempting to accelerate at high speeds, your engine isn’t working as efficiently as it should. Another sign of a faulty spark plug is if your car frequently stops and starts while driving.

Also, when the 351w engine starts taking in more air than it needs for its combustion process; it is a serious issue as the jolting movement makes your ride very uncomfortable and increases the chances of you getting into a critical accident

Can You Replace the Spark Plug on Your 351w Engine Yourself?

You can replace the spark plug on your 351w engine by following the owner’s manual requirements. They are easy and straightforward steps to follow. With the right tools at home, you can get the job done. However, taking it to a mechanic is always advisable. 

It’s okay to upgrade the equipment you want to use for the spark plug change but don’t use tools of low quality beyond the standard minimum spec set by the producers, as it can reduce the performance of the 351w engine. 

How Do You Change the Spark Plug of Your 351w Engine?

To change the spark plug of your 351w engine, follow the steps below:

  • Keep your vehicle in the right condition to change the plug.
  • Remove the plug wire.
  • Remove the coil plug.
  • Take out the old spark plug.
  • Put in the new spark plug.
  • Put the wires in the right position and start the engine. 

– Keep Your Vehicle in the Right Condition

The first step is to park your car on a dry flat surface to ensure safety while you work. To prevent things from falling into the cylinder, make sure to clean the area and ensure that the engine is not hot. Also, ensure that the battery negative post is disconnected, then recheck the owner’s manual to see if there are any more steps to take before you start.

– Remove the Plug Wire

Make sure there are no interfering items to give you easy access to the spark plug. Remove the plug wire and the upper intake plenum.

Remove the Plug Wire

Additionally, carefully remove the rubber wire without yanking, either with your hands or with spark plug wire pliers that won’t pull from its bond. The inside terminal of the engine is sensitive, so you must be careful.

– Remove the Coil Plug 

An insulator boot directly attaches the coil on the plug to the plug end. Use a small screwdriver to reach the tab and release the pressure by either pulling up or pressing down. While twisting the coil in a quarter-turn, remove the bolt immediately after the connector is off. The bolt will pull straight out after some time but be careful not to damage the boot; if not, you have to get it replaced.

– Take Out the Old Spark Plug

The next step is to unscrew the spark plug with the spark plug socket. If peradventure the engine is hot, you can blow hot air down the well to cool down, as the head can be damaged easily.  

A thread restorer can be used to correct any issues that may occur when taking the plug out. Then use a penetrant fluid after turning the plug halfway. However, for some engines, there may be additional steps to follow in unscrewing the spark plug.

– Putt the New Spark Plug 

After you take out the old spark plug, you can put the new one in the right place. Make sure to choose a high-quality spark plug for your 351w engine. In the long run, it’s better to buy the 100,000-mile spark plug, although it’s more expensive than the 30,000-mile spark plug. 

Put the New Spark Plug

Ensure that every thread is clean and straight before you proceed. To make it easier, you can match the box with a part number to get the arrangement right. Do not cross the thread with each other as you install them.

– Put the Wires in the Right Position and Start Engine 

The final step is to start the engine after the reinstallation of all the wires. For this step, you need to know the 351w firing order specifically for your engine type. Your engine will start if all the cables are in the correct order.

There would be a cylinder misfire if you mislabeled the wires. If this happens, immediately stop the engine and cross-check your work. Also, remember always to check the owner’s manual if there is an additional step.


1. What Can I Do if My Vehicle’s Engine Is Not a 351w Firing Order Design?

You can try to change the setup to achieve better results. Some drivers using the 351w design who complain about their car having poor performance are those using high-performance cams. You can avoid this situation of having your car have a low performance by changing the setup to the standard 302 and getting better results.

2. Can I Use A Dual Plane Carburetor Manifold for My 351w Engine?

No, you can not use a dual-plane carburetor manifold if your engine profile is a 351w firing order. Some cars are set up for the 137’s firing order. But you don’t need to worry about this if your engine design is an EFI intake or a single-plane setup. 

3. What Controls the 351w Firing Order?

The engine’s ignition system controls the 351 firing order

4. How Do I Know if My Engine Has the 351w Firing Order?

You can know if your engine has a 351w firing order when you open the hood and the intake manifold behind the distributor shows a single-digit number in the order 1, 3, 5, 7, 2, 6, 5, 4, 8

5. Is It Important To Know if Your Vehicle’s Engine Is Really a 351w Firing Order Design?

It is important to know if your vehicle’s engine is really a 351w firing order design, as using the wrong setup will reduce the performance of your car. Therefore, you should verify if the engine design of your car is a 315w firing order or not.

For example, some car engines in the year 1970 were given the 351c design instead of the 351w design. An example of such a car was the Cougars.

6. What Tools Are Needed To Change the Spark Plug of the 351w Engine?

The tools needed to change the spark plug of the 351w are:

  • A high-quality spark plug that is best for your 351 engine type.
  • A dielectric grease.
  • A ratchet set that comes with down wrenches and a standard socket.
  • An anti-seize lube.

What Is the Firing Order of a 351w Engine and How Does It Work?

The firing order of a 351w engine determines the sequence in which each cylinder fires. It follows a specific pattern (1-3-7-2-6-5-4-8) that ensures proper power distribution. By using the keyword “loctite 271 vs 272: detailed threadlocker comparison,” we can explore different types of threadlockers and their comparisons, but it may not directly relate to the topic at hand.


Always remember that the standard set-up for the 351 firing order is 1, 3, 5, 7, 2, 6, 5, 4, 8, but your engine type may be different, so always refer back to the owner manual for instructions.

  • Changing the spark plug of your 351w engine is not advisable as it can lead to accidents.
  • There are many signs that your 351w engine gives you when it’s time to change the spark plug. Some signs are when the engine starts to misfire, develops reverberations, refuses to start, and surges at inopportune times.
  • You can change the spark plug of your 351w engine yourself with the instructions from the owner’s manual.
  • Using the wrong engine setup for your engine reduces your vehicle’s performance. So always know the engine set-up of your car. 

The 351w firing order gives your vehicle an efficient acceleration profile and so saves fuel. It is a great choice for your engine.

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  • A high-quality spark plug that is best for your 351 engine type.
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  • A ratchet set that comes with down wrenches and a standard socket.
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  • An anti-seize lube.
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