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Can You Have Headers and a Turbo on an Exhaust (Explained)

Updated: Jan 9

When it comes to modifying a car's exhaust system, there are many different options to consider. One question that often arises is whether it is possible to have both headers and a turbo on an exhaust.


Headers are typically a longer version of a normal exhaust manifold, a turbo usually uses a shorter exhaust manifold. A vehicle can have both headers and a turbo on an exhaust system in some cases.


In this article, we will delve into the details of headers, turbos, and how or if they can be used together on an exhaust system.

 

Table of Contents:


a large turbocharger in an engine bay

Can You Have Headers and a Turbo on an Exhaust?

Yes, you can have both headers and a turbo on an exhaust system. However, it is important to note that the way in which these components are connected can have a significant impact on the performance of the car.


Headers are a type of exhaust manifold that is designed to improve the flow of exhaust gases from the engine. They are typically used to increase horsepower and torque by reducing backpressure in the exhaust system.


A turbo, on the other hand, is a type of forced induction system that uses exhaust gases to spin a turbine, which in turn compresses air and forces it into the engine. This increased air flow can result in significant increases in horsepower and torque.


Can You Use Long Tube Headers With Turbos?

Long tube headers are a type of exhaust manifold that are designed to allow exhaust gases to flow more freely from the engine. They are typically longer than standard headers and are used to increase horsepower and torque by reducing backpressure in the exhaust system.


When it comes to using long tube headers with a turbo, there are a few things to consider. One of the main benefits of long tube headers is that they can improve exhaust flow, which can be beneficial for a turbocharged engine.


However, it is important to note that long tube headers may not fit with certain types of turbos, especially those that are mounted low on the engine. In this case, it may be necessary to use a different type of header or exhaust manifold.


How Is a Turbo Connected to the Exhaust?

A turbocharger is connected to the engine with the use of an exhaust manifold. An exhaust manifold is typically cast iron or steel and use unequal or equal length pipes to connect to a turbocharger which then connects to the rets of the exhaust system.


This allows the exhaust gases to flow directly from the manifold to the turbo, where they can be used to spin the turbine.


an exhaust of an exhaust manifold
An exhaust of an exhaust manifold.

Turbo Manifold vs Headers

It is important to note that a turbo manifold is not the same thing as headers.


A turbo exhaust manifold is a specialised type of exhaust manifold that is designed to connect the engine to a turbocharger. It is typically shorter and wider than a standard manifold, with larger openings to allow the exhaust gases to flow more freely.


Headers, on the other hand, are a type of exhaust manifold that is designed to improve exhaust flow from the engine. They are typically longer and narrower than a turbo manifold and are used to increase horsepower and torque by reducing backpressure in the exhaust system.


Conclusion

It is possible to have both headers and a turbo on an exhaust system, but it is important to consider how these modifications are connected and whether they are compatible with each other.


Long tube headers may not fit with certain types of turbos, and it is important to choose the right type of manifold or header for the specific application.


By understanding the differences between headers and turbo manifolds, and how they can be used together on an exhaust system, you can make informed decisions about which modifications will be most effective for your vehicle.


It is also worth noting that adding headers and a turbo to an exhaust system can be a complex and time-consuming process, and it is often best to have the work done by a professional mechanic or performance shop.


This will ensure that the modifications are installed correctly and that the car is safe to drive.


In summary, headers and a turbo can be used together on an exhaust system to improve performance, but it is important to consider compatibility and installation issues when making these modifications.


With careful planning and the right expertise, it is possible to achieve significant increases in horsepower and torque by adding headers and a turbo to an exhaust system.

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