There is nothing like good headers to help out a vehicle, am I right? Well, when looking for the best headers for 5.3 Silverado, it is important to know which products are the best and what you should be looking out for. This can be a hard decision, but you can do it with help from this article.
Adding something so impactful to your truck can seem like an overwhelming task. But, you should be confident after reading this article to help you along the right path to success. Think about it for a second. Won’t it be great when you hear the amazing purr from your engine coming out of the headers?
It will be a sight and sound to see. All your family and friends will want to know how you got so smart. You can just tell them that you are a genius. You do not have to tell them where you found this great information.
So, get to read about the best products on the market today. Then, you can get to know the buyer’s guide, the types of headers, installation, questions, and the conclusion to get you the full perspective. Make sure to enjoy this process![toc]
Headers For 5.3 Silverado Trucks: Editor’s Top Picks
Top 10 Best Headers For 5.3 Silverado Reviews:
1. Pacesetter 72C2268 1-7/8″ Long Tube Header for Chevy Silverado
The first 5.3 Vortec headers on the list come to us from Pacesetter. What a great company name for the products they make. This mandrel bent 1-7/8″ tubing is some of the best of the best. With the help of slip-fit collectors, you will get 3-inches of space.
Additionally, you will have CNC machined flanges that are extra thick. 3/8-inches is the exact number here. Along with the headers, you will receive the best fasteners and gaskets around that are a part of your purchase.
The coating is another thing you might care about when buying your headers. With the help of a metallic coating, this ceramic design can hold up to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit with no problems at all. But, do know this coating can not be sold in the state of California. Since it is a non-CARB complaint, you may have to look elsewhere for a header product.
Lastly, know that these headers come with factory sensors standard. Because of this, your primaries have sequencing that can scavenge for the best header efficiency. There are truly lots to love with these Pacesetter headers.
- Only weigh 32 pounds
- Made fo 16-gauge metal
- The install process only involves one piece
- Very easy to install with this product
- A great cost-efficient option
- Will not have to move spark plugs or the starter wire
Now Think Again
- Errors will come if paired with a Y-pipe
- May need to get a wire extension to aid in the header installation
2. Stainless Headers Fit For Chevy Silverado
Another great brand, from the Maxon Auto Corporation, has unlocked the secrets of great headers. This Silverado header is second to none because you do not need O2 sensors for this to work. With a head thickness of 7/16-inches and a tube size of 1.75-inches, you will add a quality piece of material to your vehicle.
The CNC flanges for this construction are both Mig and Tig welded for the utmost efficiency on the market today, as far as headers go. You will also like the design that is extra lightweight, so you will not break your back during the install process.
The outlet size is something to marvel at as well. With a size of 2.5-inches and a flange thickness of 3/8-inches, you will certainly get the most out of your engine.
At only 16.12 pounds, these headers pack a lot of punch into a little weight. Luckily, this product has not bee discontinued by the Maxon Auto Corporation. In turn, you can expect a great warranty and customer service to aid you, as long as you have the Chevy Silverado.
- Work for other Chevy and GMC vehicles such as the Avalanche, Suburban, Tahoe, Sierra, and Yukon
- Comes with the exhaust headers as well as all the hardware you will ever need
- This is a factory to bolt exhaust
- A very simple install will be headed your way
- You will get better mileage after installing these headers
- No leaking will occur with this exhaust system
Now Think Again
- Does not include a hookup for EGR
- The header has to be heated to clear your vehicle’s shaft
3. Pacesetter 72C2265 Performance Armor Coat Long Tube Exhaust Header
Pacesetter has done it again with its 2,000-degree Fahrenheit model. With the help of its ceramic coating, you will love the metallic finish on this product. The CNC-machined design is something you will also notice from the steel flanges.
Along with a quality seal, you will not have anything come out or in your headers. In turn, your vehicle will be more fuel-efficient in the long run.
The fit is something else you can marvel from as well. Even if you are just a basic machinic, you will love the simplicity from the design that has you in mind. With a bolt-on install, you probably will not need any additional fabrication or welding done on the side.
Along with the design, know that there are gaskets included with your purchase. There are even connections that will be much better than a stock exhaust system you have had previously.
If you do run into a situation where you need extensions for off-roading with your Chevy Silverado or need some Y-piping, that is possible for the tube headers that are extra long. Lastly, you will notice that your tubes will easily slip onto the collector for the best firing sequence around. Then, you will get the maximum scavenging potential that you deserve.
- The headers kit only weighs a total of 25 pounds
- Use for better performance with your Chevy Silverado
- Fasteners will keep your work connected to your truck without any issues at all
- You will reduce back exhaust pressure
- The headers are all in one easy-to-use piece
- The tubing is mandrel-bent
Now Think Again
- Not for highway use
- Will not increase your underhood
4. DNA Motoring Racing Exhaust Header
Chevy Vortec headers also are available to you from the DNA Motoring Store. With the highest quality stainless steel, you will love the durability and strength that is given form the T304 model. Along with the help of a conk machine, the flange has been created to fit like none other. Also, the precision that you will receive is unparalleled to other manufacturer’s on the market today.
You will notice, too, how well the flow of these headers works with your Chevy Silverado. This will make your truck more efficient at the highest of speeds. So, by increasing airflow, gaining 10 to 15 HIP, and having a solid 2-inch intel, this header stands strong above the rest. Even the outlet is 3-inches, with an O2 sensor to protect your vehicle and its metal gaskets.
At only 36 pounds, this product will not weigh you or your vehicle down. It also pairs nicely in any Chevy from 2006 to 2014. That makes for a great 4 in 1 model that handles long tubes with ease. You will notice the improvements immediately for what these headers can achieve for you.
- Great for 4.8, 5.3, and 6.0 Liter engines
- You will be able to reduce the backpressure
- Help improve your gas velocity with these headers
- Will add torque and horsepower
- Handles in GMC model as well
- Comes with a Y-pipe
Now Think Again
- Can sometimes leak if you do not over-torque the install process
- The headers can warp over time
5. Chevy GMC 07-14 Shorty Staline Steel Exhaust Headers
Tunerbits has come up with these shorty headers. Even though they are not long tube headers, continue to read on. They may be something that you never thought you wanted. One of the first things you will notice is the machine imprinted flanges that have a welding construction for both MIG and TIG designs.
When you receive this product for the first time, know that all you will have to do an installation that is the direct bolt variety. You will love the finish on this product when you are done as well. The stainless steel, that is polished to be exact, will be another feature you love about this mandrel-bent piping.
At only 16 pounds, you will be surprised how much these headers can do for you and your vehicle. Additionally, you can trust, since this company is still in business, that you will get excellent customer service and a warranty paired together for a great value to your purchase. Not only can your Silverado aid from this purchase, but so will GMC models and Cadillacs as well.
- Will not need to elongate bolt holes
- Amazing quality for the price you pay
- Only need one person for the install
- Much cheaper than new manifolds
- Minimal hole drilling
- Gaskets are sensational quality
Now Think Again
- May have to delete EGR for these headers to work
- The header to exhaust installation can be tricky
6. Pacesetter 70-2265 Performance Long Tube Exhaust Header
For the third time, Pacesetter has made it onto the list of quality headers. But, do not be fooled. Pacesetter does not just make a lot of good headers. They truly make a lot of great headers.
By now, you know that Pacesetter products use CNC machined technology for the best steel flanges around town. As one of the best headers for the 5.3 Silverado, you will receive a product that is second to none.
With flanges that have an ultra-tight seal and the correct flow into the essential primary tubes, you should have peace of mind before, during, and after the installation process.
The tubing for this product is mandrel-bent, which means you will receive 16-gauge protection. It is still like this that glistens with its black finish. The fit will be phenomenal and the installation a breeze. What more can you ask for from headers with gaskets that are 3-inches tall? By collecting the extra volume, you can expect greatness from these headers.
- The headers only weigh 28 pounds
- The exterior is a solid, smooth finish
- Fit in Silverados from 1999 to 2006
- Amazing cylinder evacuation
- Designed all in one piece
- Delivery is on time or ahead of time
Now Think Again
- Only for off-roading
- Hard to pair with a retro-fit engine
7. For GMC/Chevy 1500/2500 5-PC Stainless Steel Exhaust Header
The Auto Dynasty Store has hopped into the mix with this next header option. With the help of precision machinery, these headers are designed as steel flanges. In turn, you will get one of the tightest seals around for an amazing flow rate. This will certainly help out your primary tubes a ton.
Since these headers are made with the best stainless steel quality, you can expect the T304 design to last and last. Along with premiere welding, you can expect the best fit and precision in the United States of America. Because the welding is TIG done, you will love this mandrel-bent tubing even more.
The last thing you should know about this product is that it has O2 sensors standard inside the headers. With the help of metal gaskets, there will be nothing that goes wrong with this product. You can rest assured.
- Compatible with other Chevy models and GMC as well
- Ideal for 4.8 and 5.3 Liter engines
- Optimized tubing
- This model relieves any backpressure
- Accepted in 49 states in America
- Very easy to place in your vehicle
Now Think Again
- One of the heaviest headers at 46 pounds
- Does not work with V6 engines
8. Gibson GP129S Stainless Steel Performance Header
Gibson Performance Exhaust enters the list next. We certainly did not want to leave them off for a few reasons. First, with 1 and 5/8-inch tubing, you will love the design and the amazing air injection possibilities.
With the help of gaskets and flanges, you will get the perfect fit you have always dreamed of in an exhaust system. Also, you will not have to deal with any welding either. Just use the OEM connections, and you will be good as gold.
By using bolt-on technology, you will notice how precise the port flanges are to create a perfect fit. Additionally, you will not have to worry about any leaking or warping happening to you. Add on the perfect hardware, and you will certainly be able to do this project all on your own.
Lastly, when you are using one of the best headers for the 5.3 Silverado, you will love that your installation will not affect the warranty straight from the factory. This is a breath of fresh air because a lot of times, something like this will jack up your warranty on your vehicle. Since this insert meets CARB and EPA requirements, you can go on with your day without a care in the world.
- The headers only weight 17.3 pounds
- Your purchase comes in a pair
- Bolts go on and off with ease
- You will not sacrifice your precious fuel economy
- Adds a beautiful sound to your vehicle
- The design of this product is a wonder to behold
Now Think Again
- The manufacturer has discontinued this model and the warranty may have changed
- It is hard to get the shock system off during install
9. DNA Motoring HDS-GY99 Stainless Steel Exhaust Header Manifold
The last model from the DNA Motoring Stores is this beauty. With the help of rock-solid steel flanges, you will have an exhaust system that holds up under the toughest of situations. The tight seal will keep your vehicle purring nicely through the regular tubes of your Chevy Silverado.
Since the product is made from T304 steel, you can expect the following: durability and strength. What more can you ask for here? Additionally, the construction is welded with the help of a CNC machine flange, so you will get a great fit with your vehicle and precision that will make you and other things the headers came stock.
Lastly, the tubing is mandrel-bent, so you can expect the metal gaskets to hold up over time. It is a product like this that can go into many Chevy and GMC SUVs and pickups from 2002 to 2011. This will make for a great exhaust in 4.8 and 5.3 Liter engines.
- You will gain torque and horsepower with this product
- The sound coming from your exhaust will be better than the original
- Expect enhanced gas velocity
- Will have no problems with leakages
- Includes the right and left manifold together
- The headers will not warp
Now Think Again
- Only come in the color of metallic
- Comes in multiple pieces for more work to be done
10. Kooks 28602201 Header
The last best header for the 5.3 Silverado is from Kooks. As a custom header, you can expect precision and quality like none other on the market today. Do note that this long tube model does include O2 sensors and ranges from 1 and 3/4-inches to 3-inches respectively. Everything will come in one package for you from extensions to gaskets to hardware.
- Fits Silverados and GMC Sierras nices
- Made in the United States of America
- Give you more power than most headers around
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- The product has been racing tested before it comes to you
- Easy install should be expected with this product
Now Think Again
- You must have a Y-pipe or things will not work for you
- The headers are not ceramic coated
Things to Consider When Buying Headers For 5.3 Silverado Trucks
Now that you have the products at your fingers tips, you need to know what you are looking for when it comes to headers. There are many options out there in this day and age. But, you need to give some priority to something and push other distractions away, so you can get the best fit for you and your vehicle. So, without further ado, let us talk about the features you need to be aware of to make an educated decision in the world of headers.
The Restriction of Airflow
When deciding upon the right headers for your Silverado, it is pertinent that you consider airflow and how it will impact your purchase. Here is what we mean. Headers are supposed to help relieve the work from the engine cylinders towards your exhaust.
The best kind of header is one that releases the most pressure for you. When it does this to the manifold, you can bet that you have a wide tube to help with the process.
Just know the wider the tube, the best exhaust flow you will have. But, the wider the tube, the heavier the product will be as well. You will have to weigh the pros and cons here, or just find a balance that you are certainly comfortable with here.
Still, do not even think for a second that you should sacrifice heading power. Just have the right flow of air with no faulty connections, and you should be good to roll.
The Finishing Touches
Other people certainly want headers that look nice from the outside. This can add a lot to the value of the vehicle, as well as the wow factor with others drooling over your Chevy Silverado.
When thinking about the finish for your headers, of course, the appearance is great. You should have a set-up that does not take a bit out of any functionality because this could certainly hurt your vehicle in the long run, which would be a shame.
But, you truly should get a header that matches your vehicle through and through. Some come in all black, while other headers look more metallic. Still, you should be aware of these products fight against corrosion and awful rust. That could certainly be a damper on your parade.
Take into account the fact that humidity will get into your exhaust one way or another. Because of this, degradation is something you should stay miles and miles away from. You may like something like the black powder design, but know that one scratch and rust can start to take over your headers. It is a sad reality for a beautiful look.
Now, if you are set on stainless steel, here is what you need to know. Anything steel, ceramic, or chrome-based can be great workhorses and durable for the long haul. They just do not look as cool as the black-coated models. So, take your pick here.
Longer or Shorter
Next, you will have to decide if you want longer or shorter headers for your Chevy Silverado. Both have their place in the world of headers, but you need to know the differences for yourself.
If you do not have a lot of room to work with, shorter headers can be your best friend. They are ideal for minimal RPM vehicles, so you could use this header for hauling things or if you live in a city.
In turn, the longer tubing is great for lofty RPM functioning. Do you like to drive fast? Then, you should get longer tubing. Are you a power junky? This is the choice for you. Knowing what your city and state have to say about exhaust systems is important for you to examine as well.
California, particularly, is one of the strictest states when it comes to exhaust systems. Also, even if they are allowed in some states, they have expectations that may make your installation process more difficult.
Installing Your Product
Speaking of installation, let us talk about this for a second. The length will certainly play a part in how easy and how difficult your installation will take. Start by seeing what your truck can do work with and go from there.
If you do not have the necessary room for headers, you may want o to rearrange things underneath your truck. But, for your info, do know that longer tube installation will take you longer during the process.
Additionally, your installation will go a lot quicker if everything is pieced ready to go for you. Some other kits have multiple pieces that you will have to read the directions on. Also, make sure the specifications are appropriate for your vehicle, so you can save time in the long run.
Bolts and gaskets that come with your kit can make the installation go a lot easier as well. When everything comes together in your purchase, your investment will be made and you will get to reap the benefits instead of scrounging around for additional parts and pieces. It sounds like a win-win to us.
The Fit & Durability
The last thing that you need to keep on your radar is how the headers fit with your vehicle, and if they are durable for the long haul. Of course, the dimensions and the specifications will do you right here.
Check with the merchant system, to give you everything you will ever need to know about the headers you are interested in getting for your Chevy Silverado. This will help make sure if compatibility will work or not.
Still, do understand that you may have to do some added work to make sure your configurations will jive with one another when you pair your headers and your Chevy Silverado together. Of course, this is due diligence that needs to be done for you to have a successful experience. If not, you could be in for quite the headache.
Types of Tube Headers
When it comes to header manifolds, there are two on the market for you to consider. One is a short tube header and the other is a long tube. Let us go into more detail about the short tube.
With the short tube option, you can make connections to the catalytic converters with ease. Additionally, you will be able to change them depending on the emission regulations for the state you live in. The ease of install will surely be noticed for you and they use the mandrel-bent design.
For the long tubes, are for the people who want to be extreme racers. But, during the install, you will probably have to change out the catalytic converter in the process. Specifically, they are made of steel or mandrel-bent tubes as well.
Still, you can expect better performance than the short headers over time. With longer tubes making the gas flow better and better, you will reduce any added heat, and torque and power will increase exponentially. As an aftermarket option, you cannot go wrong here.
Since all makes and models can be different, it is important to understand that your user’s manual can help you a long way with your Chevy Silverado install. But, after you have the header kit in mind, here are some things that you need to be aware of.
First, make sure that your modification will not interfere with other parts currently found in your vehicle. Secondly, gather all your tools before you get started, so you do not have to start and stop a lot.
As you are working, keep your surface area clean, and be sure to disconnect your vehicle’s battery. Next, take out boots and spark plugs before using a jack to raise your Chevy Silverado. Use the install instructions and never use a product without instructions to help you along. After you have read them in and out, have your tools ready in steps to make you an efficient mechanic.
FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: Will headers make my truck louder?
There will be a noise increase, but that is not the main job of headers. However, this can happen because bigger headers mean more gas is getting through having more combustion and sound.
Q2: What will headers cost me?
The price can range to a few hundred dollars up to one-thousand dollars. Finding the right choice for you has everything to do with what you have read to this point.
Q3: What is the best header?
Of course, this comes down to preference. But, many people like the brand Pacesetter because they have many quality options.
Q4: Do long tubes give more horsepower?
Since the tube is long, you will have less pressure in your pipes. In turn, you will get better horsepower than you ever thought possible. Because more oxygen can get into the mix, you may see this happen with high RPM vehicles, but not as noticeable for low RPM ones.
Q5: Should I get a short or long tube?
Ultimately, it depends on what you can fit under your truck. If you have the room, go long tube. On the other hand, go short if you can fit all the components together. Also, short tubes are ideal for lower RPM trucks and longer tubes for the higher RPM ones.
Q6: Do I need a warranty?
Most brands come with a warranty, so there is no need to buy an extra one on top unless you feel like you are going to have your Chevy Silverado for a very long time.
Q7: Is customer service important with headers?
If you are having trouble with installation or a header malfunction, having a company that cares about you more than your money is a great thing to have on your side.
Q8: Can I install a header on my own?
If you are a novice, it might be best to get a trained professional to do it. But, this will cost you a little more. Still, if you are comfortable with this sort of thing, give it a whirl.
We have come to the end, and that means it is time for you to make a decision. Know that you are capable and ready to make an educated decision that you can live with. Feel confident knowing you have done your homework and you can do this!