How Hot Do Headers Get

Owning a car is fun. But what if you don’t get the best performance while driving? It will disappoint you. Here is the solution. Make some modifications to your car’s engine, install an exhaust header, and you will get the optimum performance so easily!

But before making any changes in your car’s engine, you may want to know how exactly headers work or how hot do headers get? So, let’s get to know about the types of exhaust headers and their functionalities first.

How Do Headers Work?

Headers are an added exhaust system that helps the exhaust gasses to leave. If your car’s engine can exhaust gasses in an enhanced fashion, it will result in pumping more air and fuel. In this way, you will enjoy more horsepower in your car. Good quality headers not only improve the power generation but also improves fuel economy.

A perfect header can boost the engine’s power to a different level. That’s why it is significant to find the most suitable header for your car.

Types of Exhaust Headers

Once you decide to install an exhaust header in your car, it may be somewhat tricky to pick the correct header for your vehicle. Despite having the same car model from the same year, different people use different types of headers in their cars. Here are the types of headers:

1. Long Tube Headers 

This type of header comes with a ‘4-1’ design where four primary tubes vacate air into a collector pipe. The tubes used in this type of header are longer than those found in the stock exhaust manifold.

Long tube headers (aka full-length headers) can help the car’s engine produce sufficient power in even low and mid-RPM ranges. Adding more to this, these headers can help the engine produce 10 to 20 times more horsepower than when you have shorty headers in your car.

2. Shorty Headers

As the name suggests, shorty headers use four primary tubes that eventually fall into one collector pipe. With a compact engine compartment in your car, you can easily opt for a shorty header. Because the compact design of shorty headers will easily fit in its place without making much modification.

Although they are easy to install with air impact wrench, they produce less power than long tube headers. However, you can maximize power if your header has equal-length primaries. With equal-length primaries, your shorty header can exhaust gasses equally from every cylinder. This way, the header can provide an increase in power.

3. Mid-length Headers

Mid-length headers are popular for being easy to install as well as providing sufficient power. These headers use longer primaries than stock exhaust manifold, but not longer than that found in long tube headers. So, they are good for lowered cars where you don’t have enough space for a long tube header.

However, it will still increase power as the primaries are longer than that found in the stock exhaust manifold.

4. Tri-Y Headers

Adding more to the list, some manufacturers also produce headers in a Tri-Y design. In this type of header, the 4 primaries generally merge into two secondary tubes. The two slightly larger tubes again fall into one collector pipe.

This unique design allows the exhaust gasses to maintain high velocity for longer. As a result, the engine enjoys an uninterrupted exhaust flow, increasing more power and torque than the 4-1 design.

How Hot Do Headers Get?

Headers take place very near to the engine. As a result, it is quite expected that they will get very hot. But, to what extent do headers get hot? Sometimes, the headers can get so hot that you will need to stop the car for a while, or the heat may damage anything near the header. But, typically, the temperature should not reach up to 1000 degrees F.

The header pipe endures 3 to 4 times more heat than that of manifolds. Although, both maintain a similar surface temperature.

However, you can avoid extreme temperatures when you invest in high-quality headers. Be safer using header paint on the header. Such paint can make them able to resist temperatures up to 1500 degrees F or above.

How Hot Do Motorcycle Headers Get?

If you own a motorcycle, you would like to know how hot motorcycle headers get. Well, motorcycle headers can cross 1000 degrees. However, the muffler maintains a temperature of around 500 degrees.

As for turbo headers, the muffler stick to anywhere between 300 and 500 degrees F. However, these headers can manage to cope with temperatures around 1200 degrees F. But if the temperature reaches an extreme point, your catalytic converter is at stake.

Wrapping the Headers Help

There is a good solution to the temperature problem. You can wrap your exhaust header. Therefore, it will limit the heat in the header pipe. As a result, other parts of the car remain safer. Wrapping also enhances the exhaust flow, which helps in improving the headers’ overall performance.

Many experts say that coating the headers with ceramic also helps to withstand extreme temperatures such as 1600 degrees. This way, you can keep other parts of the engine from direct heat. As a result, you can avoid damages to items near the header.


The header is an essential part of your car. It improves the overall performance of your car and saves fuel. As a result, you can enjoy more horsepower as well as fuel economy. To keep a car in good condition for a longer period, the header plays a key role.

Make no mistake, invest in a high-quality header that fits in your vehicle’s engine compartment. And enjoy better performance than ever.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.