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Generally the replacement of these parts are on an as needed basis. To tell if you need these parts replaced. You can remove the distributir cap, and look inside. There will be little metal pins, or tabs, located around the top inner edge of the cap. If they look corroded or dirty. (Usually the corrosion looks like white crust) It's time for a new cap. The same goes for the rotor. It will have a metal tab of some sort to contact the tabs inside the cap as it spins. It's generally a good idea to replace these parts in tandem. Also, dont forget to pay attention to the location of you spark plug wires, so you dont cross them, or your car won't start. You could mark the wires with masking tape, and wright numbers on them. So, you know where the go.

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Q: How often should you change your distributor cap and rotor?
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