What Are Headers on a Truck?

Headers are essential to protect an engine from damage and ensure exhaust gases flow smoothly. But what are headers? What types of headers are available on the market, and what materials are used to make them? In this article, we will discuss the types of headers, their purpose, their materials, maintenance, and whether they are better than exhaust systems.


Types of Headers

Headers come in different types depending on the engine type and the level of performance needed. The three most common types of headers are stainless steel, ceramic-coated, and aftermarket headers.

Stainless Steel Headers: These headers are durable and can withstand high temperatures. They are also corrosion-resistant, making them an excellent choice for trucks used in harsh environments.

Ceramic-Coated Headers: These headers are designed to dissipate heat more efficiently than stainless steel. They help improve truck performance and extend the engine’s life.

Aftermarket Headers: These headers are made from high-quality materials and designed to provide superior performance. They are more expensive than other types of headers.

Materials Used to Make Headers

Headers can be made from various materials, including stainless steel, titanium, and ceramic-coated. The most commonly used material is stainless steel because of its durability, corrosion resistance, and ability to withstand high temperatures.

Maintenance of Headers

Regular maintenance is necessary to keep headers in good condition. It includes cleaning headers and checking for any damage regularly. If any cracks or other damage are noticed, it is essential to have headers repaired or replaced immediately.

Should I Put Headers on My Truck?

Whether or not to put headers on a truck depends on the engine’s type and the condition of the exhaust system. Headers may not be the best option for boosting performance. In some cases, they can reduce performance by restricting exhaust flow. Consulting a qualified mechanic who can assess the specific situation is recommended.

Will Headers Add Horsepower?

Headers are special exhaust manifolds designed to improve airflow and reduce back pressure. They can significantly boost horsepower, especially on modified engines that produce higher levels of exhaust gases. Headers benefit more from improved airflow, resulting in increased power output.

What’s Better: Headers or Exhaust?

Headers are generally considered the better option because they eliminate the back pressure created by exhaust manifolds. They also tend to weigh less, which can further improve performance. However, headers can be more expensive and difficult to install than exhaust manifolds.


Installing headers on a truck can enhance engine performance by augmenting horsepower and facilitating airflow. While headers are comparatively more expensive and difficult to install than exhaust manifolds, their superiority in terms of overall performance makes them a worthwhile option. Therefore, if optimizing your engine’s output is your goal, headers are an option that merits consideration.

About the author, Laurence Perkins

Laurence Perkins is the passionate car enthusiast behind the blog My Auto Machine. With over a decade of experience in the automotive industry, Perkins has knowledge and experience with a wide range of car makes and models. His particular interests lie in performance and modification, and his blog covers these topics in-depth. In addition to his own blog, Perkins is a respected voice in the automotive community and writes for various automotive publications. His insights and opinions on cars are highly sought-after.