Recently took my 79 F150 in for some exhaust work. Shop said the exhaust manifold on let side was leaking and needed to be fixed. I am told headers heat up the engine compartment more, don't last as long and tend to leak themselve. Are there performance manifolds for a 460 or would a guy be just as well off with OEM? thanks
I guess that depends on what you use your truck for. I bought and installed L&L headers for my 77 F-150 460 and wouldn't change anything. They have never leaked due to the thick flanges and have a lifetime warranty. I have no dyno #'s to prove the HP increase but I sure can tell the differance in the "seat of the pants" feel. They sound so much better than stock manifolds too. I ran stock manifolds for quite a few years and never had any trouble with them either but, I really like the headers better. The L&L headers are pricey but IMO worth it. I have a friend that had a pair rust out after about 5 years (small pin holes by the collector) and they sent him a new set free of charge. He just had to return the rusted out pair to them. you can get them through Bronco Grave Yard. Just my 2 cents!! -Ed
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Headers will improve performance, but will also not last as long due to rusting like stated above. Simply just thinner material than a cast manifold. But, if you have a set that is ceramic coated, they not only prevent said rust, but also are supposed to reduce engine compartment temp by about 250 degrees F. The reason headers tend to "leak" is that no one ever keeps check of the header bolts. They tend to loosen up due to the shrinking/ expansion of the metal from heat. I just make sure to re-torque mine every time I change the oil and never had any issues arrise. Another thing to think of though, aftermarket headers may not line up/ bolt up with your current exaust system.
I have headers on both my 74' and 04' trucks and wouldn't have it any other way. I hate exhaust manifolds. The headers on my 74' are over 10 years old and are steel. The ceramic coating on off the shelf headers is junk and rusts in short order. If you want a set of headers to last, get the painted version, strip the paint and smooth the welds. Then send them off to a reputable ceramic coating shop to get coated.
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