Do Headers Make Your Car Louder? 12 Ways To Make Car Louder

Heard someone bragging about their newly-purchased exhaust headers and the aggressive sound they produce? That seems pretty impressive, but there is no need to get jealous.

Header-related misconceptions are so abundant that it is hard to pinpoint the truth. So do headers make your car louder or not? Our article will shed some light on the issue.

What Are Headers On A Car? How Do They Work?

Do Headers Make Your Car Louder

Headers comprise a series of exhaust pipes with smooth and gentle bends that offer each cylinder a port for gas evacuation.

For headers on car, the primary tubes extend from the crankcase to the collector, where emissions from each cylinder setup converge before joining the rest of the catalytic converter.

Just like a port for cold air intake, the entire engine airflow plays a crucial role on the exhaust side, except that the system must adapt its power gains to empty all cylinder heads.

The negative pressure produced near the head deck gates sucks the redundant gasses out of the cylinders, while the positive pressure does the exact opposite.

One tricky issue is to control this negative pressure for accurate fuel delivery at the precise moment.

Overall, it seems the header layouts are a stark contrast to factory-installed cast manifolds.

So which constitutes the core distinction between an exhaust header and an exhaust manifold? Their functions are roughly the same; only the designs differ.

Exhaust manifolds are a monolithic structure of cast iron that spans all cylinders. They merely pool all their exhaust gases around the head gaskets before discharging them into a turd-shaped log.

Meanwhile, separate mid-pipes in an exhaust header weld together to carry the air down a single flow.

So, do headers make a car louder? Scroll down!

Do Headers Make Your Car Louder?

No. A headers sound seems clearer and more vibrant at first hearing. But in fact, the volume itself barely changes.

Exhaust headers indeed enjoy a thinner yet larger dimension than stock manifolds, which permits smoother sound waves to traverse the straight pipe and escape your engine bay.

Thus, some readers might ask: How about shorty headers? Will shorty headers change sound better than longer ones? Our verdict remains the same: no huge difference in sound was detected.

They only lend a very slight exhaust sound improvement that is not worth your consideration in the first place.

It is safe to conclude that an exhaust head does not differ much from a regular stock muffler – and is far from an ideal purchase for those seeking an immersive sound improvement.

Still, the good news is that features for loud exhausts indeed exist (it is just that header installation is not one of them!) Head to the next section for more tips to tackle such matters.

What Are Features To Make Your Car Louder?

Here are some practical features and setups to expand the car’s noise systems:

  • Muffler Replacement
  • Aftermarket Exhausts
  • Exhaust Tip
  • Welder Hooks
  • Turbochargers
  • Catback Catalytic Converter
  • Downpipe
  • Straight Tubes
  • Speakers
  • Holes Drilled In The Exhaust System
  • Tube Unclogging

1. Muffler Replacement

Replacing the car’s muffler is among the standard methods for exhaust enhancements.

Certain mufflers are meant for noise absorption from engines; the fewer baffles there are, the better! For optimal results, we suggest you arrange a consultation meeting with experts.

Most professionals recommend straight mufflers, as they allow a direct and non-roundabout escapade for the exhausts, resulting in louder sounds and a transparent surge in power.

2. Aftermarket Exhausts

Airflow maximization is one of its core functions, directly impacting the car’s volume.

Nevertheless, bear in mind that certain restrictive systems for automobiles do not accommodate aftermarket exhausts (to avoid quality compromise).

Thus, before any car purchase, never forget to drop by a professional mechanic with years of experience – who will help analyze your vehicle type with extensive insights.

A good investment not only solidifies the engine’s performance, volume, and airflow, but also improves the horsepower for a smoother and safer drive.

3. Exhaust Tip

These cost-effective and functional tips work wonders for the echo amplifiers. Even better, they present abundant design types for customers to pick from.

A terrific investment would be car tips with flared ends and dual sidewalls.

As per studies, they have much more notable performance and give some major increases to the overall quality of the car system – not just the noise outputs.

Some vehicle models, however, might not be a good fit for exhaustion tips. Still want to install them for your cars? Then it will be better to purchase extra whistles to achieve magnified effects.

4. Welder Hooks

Exhaust designs differ across different automobiles. Those with mounted rubbers will cause much inferior volume noises.

Thus, one immediate solution is to connect a welder hook to the pipes for desired noise vibrations.

The only drawback of such an approach is excessive interior noise. Free-hanging hooks help minimize these cumbersome sounds to a certain extent, but not by much.

Nevertheless, if they are not a huge bother to you, welded hangers still serve as an excellent gadget.

5. Turbochargers

These turbochargers demand much higher charges, but that is justifiable given the immense advancement it provides for the sound system.

Your car can be heard from miles away – a terrific benefit during high-traffic hours!

Aside from the sounds, your engine power also undergoes a significant boost, thanks to an extra quantity of compressors.

The car’s durability is strengthened as a result, saving tons of money and effort. A seemingly expensive purchase turns out to be cost-effective in the end!

6. Catback Catalytic Converter

Catback catalytic converters are most drivers’ first choices, mainly due to their inexpensive price tag and exceptional visual appeal.

For people who value aesthetics and functionalities to equal degrees, few products can exceed these converters! 

Another competitive edge is their stainless steel materials, which can strongly withstand chemicals, rusting, and other damage – while still increasing the volume levels to new heights.

Though their durability might pale against higher-end features, they are a terrific alternative for budget users.

7. Downpipe

What is so special about a common downpipe? Contrary to its somewhat bland construction, this compact gadget could have insane impacts on the car’s sounds.

Due to its direct connection with the exhaustion system, carbon monoxide emissions will drop significantly, giving clearer and louder echoes.

A catted downpipe might be your best bet, which enhances the sounds while still being considered street legal and passing all emission tests easily.

8. Straight Tubes

If you aim for more aggressive and efficient methods, then straight tubes could be your trusted ally.

These tubes replace each exhaust portion with a hollow piece of metal, aiding noise and airflow levels. With no oscillator on the way, the air intake is no longer restricted.

However, here is one serious downside you should not ignore: such installations are illegal. Replacing coolant pumps with straight pipes means you will fail all emission tests.

Hence, pairing the straight tube with a high-performance downpipe is a necessary move to mitigate these catastrophes.

It might generate more noise than you would like, but at least you will remain a law-abiding citizen!

9. Muffler Deletion

Factory mufflers are a common culprit behind your car’s muffling sounds. Here is where we need to perform a “muffler deletion” – which points to manual removal of those mufflers.

Once done, you will notice a much more transparent improvement in the sound quality.

Some experienced drivers prefer to swap mufflers with tubes to balance the car’s construction.

Though that is not a compulsory move, we believe it is a terrific strategy that can increase the car’s noise without wasting too much expenditure.

All you need is a simple tool to remove the stock portion and a clasp to secure the tube on its spot, which can be easily accessible from a regular muffler shop.

And before you proceed, never forget to confirm its legalities by consulting the local laws and regulations.

10. Speakers

Not many shops offer these features for your vehicle, but they are still a promising solution! Certain automakers incorporate microphones for engine and intake noises enhancement.

Higher-quality products even wire in audio and music that imitate genuine engine sounds! 

And economic-wise, since these noises are artificial, less fuel will get wasted, saving you from regular fillings of the fuel tanks.

Nevertheless, some drivers do not feel particularly fond of these speakers due to the sounds’ “inauthenticity.” But to each his own!

11. Holes Drilled In The Exhaust System

Coming up in our list is, by far, the most popular addition (though these holes are usually not created with deliberation).

Any cracks, leaks, or defective openings will foster a seamless flow for the exhaust, producing much cleaner sounds.

To bore a small hole into the system, you only need a drill (possibly a mallet) and some properly functioning exhaust pipe networks.

After the task, do not forget to seal the deal by striking the tube’s length with a hammer. Presto!

12. Tube Unclogging

Blockage of debris stuck in the tube might prevent an optimal sound input.

Our answer to this problem is quite straightforward: make sure you set aside some free time for necessary maintenance tasks.

Have a professional cleaning service take care of all the hard work or do everything yourself.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does Headers Make Car Perform Better?

Yes, of course! They are one of the most popular bolt-on installations among automobile owners.

But how do headers improve performance? Their setup aims to foster the engine’s capacity through cylinders.

Cylinders have always been considered a performance killer, whose pressure significantly affects the car’s speed and control.

It is almost impossible for engines to produce additional exhaust without compromising catastrophic compartments.

Fortunately, headers help reduce such pressures, releasing more space for clean air and sustaining better horsepower as a result.

These incredible effects are concurred by most seasoned drivers, who confirm that header-equipped engines are more potent than standard systems and boast a much greater torque.

2. Short versus Long Headers: Which One is Better For The Car’s Performance?

Headers come in numerous designs, although most fall into two main categories: short and long tubes. So which one is better?

As their names suggest, length is where both of them differ. For starters, shorty heads converge into one singular pipe with considerably shorter gaps.

Thus, the back pressure decreases, translating to much inferior oxygen intake and horsepower.

Longer heads, on the other hand, are more widely spaced, which elevates the car’s performance to higher levels. Hence, in most cases, long headers are among the first picks for many drivers.

Still, avoid the immediate assumption that they are always superior. After all, not all of these headers are deemed “street legal” according to emission rules.

And not to mention, their bulky sizes often call for additional space, which often necessitates a costly redesign.

Shorty headers, at the end of the day, still work pretty well for cars with low-RPM powers, such as daily commuter cars or work trucks. Assess your situations and budgets to choose an optimal model.

3. How Can I Make My Car Quieter?

Noisy automobiles can sometimes be a nuisance. Luckily, these suggestions might help you manage the dilemma:

  • Buy Another Muffler. A worn or loose muffler might generate even more noise than usual.
  • Purchase A Sound-Deadening Mat. You may put it near the side panels, in the trunk, on the ground, or anyplace you deem necessary!
  • Buy New Tires. Tires also play a role in noise production. Smaller ones tend to be much quieter.
  • Uphold A Maintenance Schedule. Excessive humming noises during drives (or even after the engine has been turned off) might indicate an underkept vehicle. Make sure you have tended to it well during the last few months.

These tips should be sufficient for sound reduction. If trouble persists, consider turning to professional services for more solutions. With a helping hand from specialists, this issue will be a breeze to resolve.


Aftermarket Exhausts

Our article has discussed the inquiry: Do headers make your car louder?

While the answer might not be entirely positive, be assured that high-quality heads could give an incredible boost to the car’s performance and horsepower.

Remind yourself to maintain a consistent cleaning schedule and upkeep your vehicle in good condition!

For more clarifications regarding the dilemma: Do headers change exhaust sounds, feel free to contact our team.

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