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The Buyer’s Guide To Motorcycle Exhaust Headers

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If you own a motorcycle, there may come a time when you need to replace your motorcycle’s exhaust header system due to wear and tear or damage. The exhaust header on your bike is a vital component to your motorcycle’s exhaust system and depending on the type of motorcycle you own, there are several things to keep an eye out for when shopping for a new exhaust header. At RC Components, we’ve been providing the best in both aftermarket and custom bike parts since 1989 and we’re dedicated to helping you enhance your motorcycle. If you’re unclear about what your motorcycle exhaust header does, or you need help purchasing a new exhaust header for your bike, contact our professionals today!

Motorcycle Exhaust Systems 

Before we dive into what your motorcycle's exhaust header system does, it’s important to gain an understanding of your bike’s exhaust system. While a stellar exhaust system can help improve the overall functionality of your bike’s performance, it’s just one of the many reasons your exhaust system exists. The main function of your exhaust system is to route hot gasses away from the engine after combustion. This is not only beneficial to the rider’s lungs, it helps to convert carbon monoxide that has been expelled from the engine into carbon dioxide, making it slightly more environmentally friendly. A good exhaust system will also improve how your bike’s engine performance, as it can increase your engine's horsepower as well.

Motorcycle Exhaust Headers 

They main function of your motorcycle’s exhaust headers are to make it easier for your engine to push out exhaust gases while minimizing back pressure. An important way to avoid unnecessary buildup of back pressure lies in making sure the two exhaust charges do not arrive at the catalytic converter at the same time. Should these charges arrive at the same time, or even too close together, they could bounce off of each other and send a pressure wave back up the pipe towards the bike’s cylinder head.

The exhaust systems for motorcycles often falls into two categories: the full system or the slip-on. The full exhaust system will connect to the head of your bike’s engine, while the slip-on connects where your stock muffler was. While there are many reasons to upgrade your motorcycle’s current exhaust headers, below are a few of our favorites:

  • Boost your motorcycle’s performance by installing aftermarket exhausts to increase horsepower and energy efficiency. 
  • Enhance the look of your bike with chrome-out pipes or hellbenders
  • Decrease loud noises coming from your motorcycle’s muffler.

Choosing Motorcycle Exhaust Headers For Your Bike 

When it comes to choosing the best motorcycle exhaust headers for your bike, there are a variety of options and styles to choose from. Before you purchase the first shiny exhaust headers you see, make sure you know exactly what type of headers you are looking for. Not all motorcycle headers are made from the same material or in the same fashion.

Older motorcycles often utilized single tube exhaust headers made of high temperature steel. While these were an easy option for bikers, providing they required very simple construction, they certainly have their drawbacks. Discoloration would often occur due to the high temperature of exhaust gases passing through the metal pipe, not to mention riders could easily burn themselves from the heat if they weren’t careful. As a result of these downsides, header pipes are now made with special multi-walled construction to keep heat constrained to the inner layer of metal, allowing the outer metal to remain cool and harmless.

Stock Replacement Headers & Aftermarket Headers 

An important decision buyers have to make when shopping for a new exhaust header is whether to go with stock replacements or an aftermarket set. If your motorcycle’s exhaust system is in seemingly good shape and all you’re looking to do is replace the header, opt for stock replacement parts. On the other hand, if you’re looking to upgrade your current exhaust system to a better model, try searching for aftermarket replacement systems.

At RC Components, we’re proud to offer the best in both aftermarket and customized motorcycle parts. If you’re looking for a new exhaust header to add to your two-wheeler, browse our large selection of high-quality Exhaust Headers online. From true dual headers to hellbenders and trike extensions, you’re sure to find the perfect exhaust header for your ride!

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