Many truck drivers do not understand how important it is to get an efficient exhaust system. Yes, the stock ones are great, but they will not be that highly efficient when mixing the air-fuel mixture. As a result, the engine will not offer the maximum torque and power.
So, when our Chevy 350 was not performing up to the mark, the first thing that we wanted to upgrade was the headers. But getting the best headers for Chevy 350 is easier said than done. There are just too many options out there. And even though many seem to be worthy of the money, they are average at best in reality.
However, when we kept the crucial factors in mind, secluding the actual well-performing ones from the rest became a piece of cake. And to make things easier for you, we will precisely discuss those in this article. So, stick till the end!
Buying Guide for Choosing Headers for Chevy 350 Truck
As we have mentioned, we had to consider several crucial factors to isolate the worthy options from the rest.
If you want to scrutinize the headers efficiently, you need to keep them in your consideration. So, without further ado, let us get into describing them.
Design of the Performance Header
First and foremost, consider the design. And this is something that might depend on your personal preference. Modifying the headers is a big hassle. For that reason, if you were looking for the best headers for 454 big blocks or anything specific, check before purchasing.
The Fit of Exhaust System
Not all of the available options can offer a flush fit. However, the manifold needs to sit close to the other parts, whether a dual exhaust system or a single exhaust system.
In this case, you would need to check whether the unit can offer an OEM-style fit or not for your small block chevy engines and some other V8 engines as well. And we would strongly recommend against the ones that cannot offer that.
Also, check the size of the primary and secondary tubes. For low torque experience, single or two secondary tubes should be smaller.
You would not want to go through too many hassles when it comes to the installation process, right? Well, for that, you need to consider the installation. Firstly, the package should come with all of the required hardware. That includes bolts, gaskets, and other hardware.
Secondly, the direct bolt-on installation options are generally easy to handle. So, we would recommend checking them out before anything else.
Color Coating of Long Tube Headers
The headers of the primary tubes will generally come in two different colors. Firstly, mild steel, cast iron, and stainless steel finishes. These will rely on a GMC coating and ceramic Coating. But, they make the exhaust system stand out a little on the truck. So, opt for these if that is what you were shooting for.
On the other hand, there are black color coatings. These will offer a stealthy look and make the various blend in with the other parts in the truck. Also, some of the brands will utilize hi-temp paint. Those are the ones that we would recommend if you want to get the black headers.
That said, no matter which GMC or ceramic coating you opt for, ensure the coating is long-lasting. Chipping will be a typical case if you opt for something that has low-quality paint on the exterior.
Welding on the Joints
Lastly, consider the welding on the joints. We would highly recommend getting the ones with a TIG welding on the joints. They are highly resistant to cracking and other damages. As a result, you can get an extended service from the headers.
Reviews of the 5 Best Headers for Chevy 350 Truck
After making many head-to-head comparisons and testing, we made a shortlist of the efficient Chevy 350 truck headers.
We have reviewed the market’s most famous and trusted performance headers and tested them to see how they perform. We have come to a list of 5 Chevy 350 headers with the review and test.
And the list goes something like this:
BLACKHORSE-RACING Exhaust Manifolds
Regarding performance headers for Chevy 350, only a few out there are worthy of consideration. And this offering from Blackhorse Racing is one of those few.
So, what makes this exhaust manifold offering worthy of consideration? First of all, it features an OEM-style design. That means you will not have to go through any hassles when installing this.
Another great thing that makes it an excellent pick for the best exhaust headers for 5.7 Chevy is its ability to hug the block. It will offer a close fit and provide extra clearance for other parts. The primary tube size is 1-5/8 inches, suitable for Chevy 350.
Talking of which, it is exceptionally light in weight. The lightweight nature will ensure that these Chevy 350 truck headers do not drag the crate engine down. Instead, it will make the engine fully push itself to the max; no wonder why Blackhorse racing is among the best header brands.
- Directly compatible with Chevy 350
- This exhaust manifold offers a close fit
- Perfect primary tube size
- Leaves extra tight clearance applications
- Lightweight header design
- These help the engine offer high performance
- It might ship without having a flat mating surface
Are you tired of chrome-colored headers? Want to get the best performance headers for Chevy 350 that will offer a stealthy look? Take a look at what Flowtech is offering here.
Instead of opting for regular chrome-plating, the brand has opted for high heat-resistant black paint on the exterior of the Chevrolet performance parts. This paint will ensure that the headers do not heat up quickly and offer you a stealthy look.
The package will come with all the hardware and gaskets you need for the mounting process. In other words, there will be no need to make any additional purchases. Also, these Chevy 350 truck headers can make a leak-free seal to prevent cracking, thanks to the high-quality sealing rings.
These Chevy 350 long header tubes have gone through precision engineering, so the fit will be right on your truck. There will be no need to go through intricate steps or put too much effort to get a flush and close fit.
- Black, stealthy paint on the exterior
- The paint is highly resistant to heat
- These header tubes offer a precise fit
- Includes all the required hardware and gaskets
- Provides a leak-resistant seal
- It does not offer enough ground clearance to fit O2 sensors
POWERGO MOTORSPORT 1181303830
While looking for the proper headers for Chevy 350 4×4, we wanted to get something that will directly replace the stock manifolds. And that is where we stumbled upon this offering from POWERGO MOTORSPORT.
The OEM-style design of this exhaust header is the show’s main star for these headers. It will offer a direct bolt-on fit over the stock manifolds. That means you will not have to make any adjustments, nor will you need to go through any extra hassles.
Unlike some other headers for Chevy 350 4×4, these exhaust manifold models have gone through the hydraulic press for the flattening process. As a result, the fit will be pretty much snug on the truck. Also, as each of the joints is TIG welded, they are highly resistant to wearing and cracking.
But that is not all! There is hi-temp paint on the exterior that can withstand up to 500 degrees Celsius. The black paint will allow you to get a stealthy look at the back of the truck. Overall, it is an excellent pick for the best headers for 5.7 Chevy.
- Directly bolts-on the stock manifolds
- Easy to install on exhaust port and exhaust pipe
- Features a hi-temp paint on the exterior
- It offers a stealthy look for general motors
- Highly resistant to cracking and wearing
- The included gaskets feel a bit cheap
JEGS Painted Long Tube Headers
On the lookout for the best headers for torque? You will not have to look any further because JEGS offers something to meet your criterion. The long tube design of the headers compliments your driving style in high RPM and less heat when maximizing the potential power.
To start with, it features black paint on the exterior. This paint will offer the stealthy look that most truck driver looks for. But the color is not there just for the looks; it can withstand a high temperature and will make the headers last for a prolonged amount of time.
In the JEGS long tube header package, you will find all of the required hardware and parts required for the installation process. For that reason, you will not have to go through the hassle of making extra purchases. Also, the installation process is pretty simple.
These header tube parts come with 1-5/8 “ primary tubes for chevy engines with collector gaskets of 3’’ for smooth riding experiences. Also, the mounting accessories make it easier to set up.
The package will also include reducers, which will make it compatible with the small Chevy engines. And, as the headers can adequately carry out the mixing process, you will notice a significant improvement in terms of better torque and more engine power.
- Sports a stealthy paint
- The paint can withstand high temperatures
- High range RPM
- This long tube header comes with all of the required hardware
- Pretty simple installation process
- Scavenge gas from chevy cylinders equally
- Increases the power and torque of the engine
- It does not leave that much clearance to access the plugs easily
SUPERFASTRACING Stainless Steel Manifold
Last but not least, we have an offering from SUPERFASTRACING. But just because it is at the bottom of the list does not mean that it will offer average performance. It is better than most of the other regular headers out there.
First of all, the headers will offer an OEM-like fit on the Chevy and other vehicle engines. It will fit flush on the existing mounting points, and you will not find it necessary to make any adjustments on these.
These coated headers are highly versatile as well. They will work with both angled and straight plug heads. That means there will be no need to put that much effort into the installation process, even if you have upgraded to different plug heads.
The joints of the headers feature TIG welding. This welding process increases the resistance against bending in high-intensity exhaust gasses in the combustion chamber. In other words, the headers will last for a prolonged amount of time without showing any issues. You will even find a built-in hole for the O2 sensor, which we do not see.
- This stainless steel headers offer a flush fit
- Works with both angled and straight plug heads
- Easy to install
- Features TIG welding on the joints
- Built-in hole for the O2 sensor
- Better option of the evacuation of exhaust gas
- The GMC coating is not that resistant to chipping
- Do not perform well in lowered cars
How Much Horsepower Do Headers Add to a Chevy 350?
So, we have mentioned that proper headers can increase the engine’s power. But how much power can you expect after installing one of those? In our general tests, we have found an increase of up to 16 or more horsepower. Now, 16 might seem like little, but it is certainly not.
With that kind of horsepower gain, you will find your small block chevy and GMC truck struggling less when you push the truck to the limit for peak performance. Let us not forget to state that you should expect a dramatic increase in torque (providing horsepower gain) without compromising fuel efficiency. Proper headers can add up to 53 feet per pound of torque to the Chevy, which, again, is a lot.
Which Headers Give the Most Horsepower?
Among all the types of headers, the ones that are notorious for offering an insane boost in terms of horsepower are the long-tubed and medium-tubed ones. These are highly efficient when mixing the air-fuel mixture and will make the engine run at a high RPM without throttling compared to regular street engines.
There is a dramatic increase in horsepower when the RPM level is high and the engine does not throttle. Using any proper chevy tuner can increase the performance drastically. That is why truck drivers looking for a good performance boost will opt for the long-tubed and medium-tubed headers.
What Type of Headers Are Best?
There are mainly four types of headers out there. They are long-tube, short tube, shorty header, tri-Y, mid-length headers, and lakester headers.
Among all, we believe the long-tubed or full-length headers are the best. Why? The total length allows the exhaust system to offer a significant boost in horsepower with improved exhaust flow.
But if you are using low tube headers, using an exhaust kit can reduce the problem.
On that note, torque and horsepower remain reasonably high at the mid and low RPM ranges. And these two ranges are the ones where most street-driven trucks will hang around.
How much horsepower do headers add to a 350 Chevy?
Header installation on a 350 Chevy can provide a significant increase in horsepower and torque. A good header system will provide more than an increase of 50 horsepower and torque, but can top out at around 300-400lbs of boost.
This additional power is beneficial for both street use and racing applications, as it can take the car to new performance levels. headers are not cheap, however, so be sure you’re getting the most out of your investment by talking to a qualified mechanic about what system is right for you.
Which Headers Are Best for Low-End Torque?
The full-length long-tubed headers are a great pick at the mid-length headers and low RPM ranges. They can significantly increase the horsepower and offer you the performance boost that you might be looking for.
However, the shorty headers would take the lead if we specifically talk about low to medium range torque. For being short, a short header can adequately enhance the horsepower in those two ranges.
What Size Headers Should I Get?
For making the right choice, you would need to consider the maximum horsepower output for your engine and the primary diameter. For the 200-325 HP engines, pick the ones that have a primary diameter of 1-1/2 inches. And for the 275-425 HP, opt for the headers with a primary diameter of 1-5/8 inches.
Other than that, in terms of the 400-500 HP engines, pick the headers 1-3/4 inches or 1-7/8 inches. Finally, for 500 HP or more, the primary diameter should be at least 2 inches. Consider these, and choosing the right size of headers for your truck will be a breeze.
We cannot think of rolling without the best headers for Chevy 350 truck installed. The level of performance boost it offers is something that other upgrades cannot quickly provide.
That said, we hope that after reading through this entire article, choosing one for your Chevy Silverado has become an easy task. However, do consider the crucial points before making a purchase.