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Old 10-28-2014, 10:28 AM   #1
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Possible Header Issue

Hey guys, last weekend me and a buddy installed bbk ceramic shorty header onto my 3.7 v6. I had a small exhaust leak at the mid pipe. Fixed it and a few days later, I am starting to hear a slight flapping sound again. I am getting very frustrated as I have messed with them three times already. I would like to meet up with anyone in the phoenix, chandler or ahwatukee area of Arizona to see what other people shorties sound like and make sure I am not going insane. I had a mechanic look at it and says he didn't notice leaks but said removing the heat shield during install, increases sound and my "injectors" are making the slight clicking noise. Someone help a brother out!!
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:16 PM   #2
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They aren't lose by chance are they? I know the swell and shrink while breaking them in. Had the same problem with a buddies. Tightened them up and the chatter went away.
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:44 PM   #3
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They are tightened up. It has been 9 days since install. Does it make any noise at all? Why is this mechanic saying it is injectors making noise? Like what the hell is this guy talking about? lol. I mean he probably doesn't know what he is talking about but he also didn't try to sell me on anything either. Can anyone tell me what just changing the headers made your engine compartment sound like? Smooth and deeper? I cannot feel any air leaking anymore either, no black around the pipes, used the hose trick to hear for a leak, couldn't tell a thing.. I really don't want to pay a shop, but I might just have too.
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:46 PM   #4
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Oh I re tightened everything down last night and fixed the small mid pipe leak. I still hear this slight clicking noise under medium-high acceleration. If I am under 2-2.5 rpm, I can't hear a thing.
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Old 10-28-2014, 06:49 PM   #5
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Sounds like a leak but idk haha could be leaking around headers. might have a gasket problem?
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Old 10-28-2014, 08:18 PM   #6
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Your heading your valves and timing. These engines make noise. Is what you are hearing a dull clickijg/flapping noise under medium load but goes away when you let off the throttle?

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Old 10-29-2014, 11:26 AM   #7
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Yes that is exactly what it is! @14mustang
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Old 10-29-2014, 11:31 AM   #8
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I have the same noise. I had it before I installed me headers. It was bugging me as well so I leak tested my exhaust with seafoam and had no smoke from the headers and midpipe. It definitely is annoying but my car runs smooth.

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Old 10-29-2014, 11:32 AM   #9
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You could get a hold of some of the tuner companies and ask them for advice. They would probably know for sure what it is and if it's bad

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Old 10-29-2014, 01:11 PM   #10
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I never had noise before on the stock headers, that's why I think it is strange.
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Old 10-29-2014, 01:23 PM   #11
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Did you have a tune before?

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---------- Post added at 12:23 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:23 PM ----------

You can take it to a shop and get it smoked tested

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Old 10-29-2014, 02:27 PM   #12
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Possible Header Issue

Two things to watch, if it sounds like rattling noise on acceleration and you could smell the burnt fumes, you probably need to re-tighten the connecting mid pipe bolts. Just maybe, you need to add washer as you may already hit the end of the thread before the complete seal is achieved. Best way to tighten this is to use impact tool with 12" extension and swivel end/connectors. If not, then it may need a tune.
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:06 PM   #13
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Could it be the replacement headers are of a thinner material thus allowing more valve sound to come through?
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:11 PM   #14
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I had a tune before, then retuned the week of install for the headers. I smell nothing burning. I don't know guys.. I would love to just hear someone else's car in person or else I'm taking it to another shop to be checked out.

---------- Post added at 03:11 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:11 PM ----------

Anybody know any extremely reputable exhaust shops?
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:12 PM   #15
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If you wanna come to Georgia haha
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wysh View Post
Could it be the replacement headers are of a thinner material thus allowing more valve sound to come through?
^^^This^^^
The Stock Cast iron manifolds are thick and do hide noise, the thinner headers will let you hear more noise.
When I put headers 72 Ranchero I swore they were leaking, it was just valve noise amplified by the thinner material. It ran like that for 7 years.
Mine makes some extra noise, has been for the past 30,000 miles. As long as it is not leaking I myself would not worry.
BTW Ford does have some noisy injectors, you could hear my 03 5.4 through the stock exhaust.
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:33 PM   #17
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I have the same headers and stock mid-pipe as you. I've never had the sound you describe before or after installing the headers. Which gaskets did you use? OEM or the BBK ones?
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Old 10-29-2014, 05:41 PM   #18
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If you wanna come to Georgia haha
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Old 10-29-2014, 08:15 PM   #19
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I'm using bbk but have no leaks on the gaskets

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Old 10-29-2014, 08:17 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14mustang View Post
I'm using bbk but have no leaks on the gaskets

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Same. No weird noises, no clicking, nadda.

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Old 10-29-2014, 08:20 PM   #21
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I have the noise though. I also have no mufflers.

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Old 10-29-2014, 10:12 PM   #22
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wait so u guys r saying there's a noise after BBk shorty tuned length headers? I'm thinking of ordering tomorrow


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Old 10-30-2014, 10:22 AM   #23
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I used the bbk gaskets because there was a deep imprint from the stock manifold. They seem to work fine, no leaks from the engine block. We are saying some people have problems and some don't haha basically. They sound amazing though!
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Old 10-30-2014, 10:34 AM   #24
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I think it's the flange for the cats that leaks no issues at the block.

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Old 11-02-2014, 09:49 PM   #25
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I am having the same issue. I first installed mine using the stock gaskets a week ago. A ticking/flapping noise showed up two days later. So loosened, and re-tightened all of the header bolts the next day (none of them had come loose) and that did not fix the issue. I then took them both off yesterday, and installed them again using the bbk supplied gaskets. Sounded fine at first but the sound is back today. I'm looking all over every forum topic I can find for a resolution. I can't find any leaks, but am going to try taking the mid pipe off tomorrow and free re-alligning that tomorrow. The sound out of the exhaust is awesome now, but the ticking/flapping is anoying
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Old 11-03-2014, 12:49 PM   #26
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@rgstelzner . Man this is the same issue I have! I would love to know if this fixes your problem! Please let me know. If it does not work I am taking it to a professional shop.
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Old 11-04-2014, 08:56 AM   #27
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Well I didn't get much time to work on it yesterday (damn daylight savings time) after work, but for me it seems like the noise is coming from the flange between the cat and the header. The noise is still there today, but distinctly different. I'm going to fiddle with it throughout the week and see if i can't get it lined up correctly. But i'm not sure how i'll manage to do it with only one pair of hands a not much daylight after I get home from work....
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Old 11-04-2014, 09:00 AM   #28
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Well I cranked mine down when I had it on the lift the other day. The noise is definitely from the collector. I am 99.9% it's the harmonics of the headers and the noise is the exhaust valves that's amplified by the headers due to them being equal length resulting in the exhaust tonals reaching the collector at the same time.


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Old 11-04-2014, 12:27 PM   #29
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*update* Took to a shop. They loosened the header connecting to the midpipe. (Used an impact gun). Then re tightened and made no difference. After about 20 minutes of fiddling around, they found that the lower nuts on the header to the engine lock (driver side) had become slightly loose. The ones I cannot get to without it being jacked up of course. The noise has decreased a bit! I still hear a slight clicking and so did the mechanic, he told me to bring it by again sometime and he would figure it out. $55 bucks later. Noise decreased. It is small enough for me not to care as much. I ordered stock oem gaskets for $20 from ford. Will try these out when they come in.(hopefully that will do the trick)!
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:32 PM   #30
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What type of gain are you guys seeing with these on? Yes I have read other forms on it, but I need a more specific answer. I don't feel much if anything at all. My idle is not 100% steady anymore. The only way is to get a dyno done. Which I am going to this week! . I have cold air, cat back, and headers and as well. For my Dyno I will be using bama 91 Race tune. What do you think my numbers should be around if my headers are NOT leaking?! I saw some similar setups with 270ish hp and 250-260 torque.
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Old 11-04-2014, 12:35 PM   #31
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The headers shield not be your idle issue. your tune needs to be adjusted for the flow

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Old 11-04-2014, 12:37 PM   #32
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A ratcheting 1/2" wrench is perfect for the lower bolts and allows you to tighten all of them from the top.

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Old 11-04-2014, 01:46 PM   #33
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I am able to get all from up top as well, using one a ratcheting flex head wrench, but I used a 13mm, 1/2" did not fit for me. And for the bottom rear most passenger side bolt, well I just take that one slow with a flare nut wrench. I also ordered a new set of ford OEM gaskets last night, and will probably just take them to a shop around here and have them installed. My frustration for this damn sound is getting to me.

As for gains, I do notice a substantial gain in low end power. Not neck snapping, but I can definitely feel it. My idle isn't rough, but if I do a short rev while not moving (just tap the gas peddle) it will almost stall the engine (not sure if right term) because it drops down to ~400-500 rpm before bouncing back up.

Edit: As for numbers, I don't really know, I've seen the same mods on our cars vary by ~20 hp or more. Dyno tune will help though
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Old 11-04-2014, 01:48 PM   #34
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The actual size of the bolts is 1/2 but if they are corroded then a 13 has to be used

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Old 11-04-2014, 02:44 PM   #35
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Well, I changed my mind. I'll be trying the install again this weekend with new OEM gaskets. Luckily, I've gotten pretty quick at it now. I will just take it very slowly, and make sure everything is aligned properly, and torqued aaalllllll the way down. I will probably also use some exhaust sealant in the flanges between the headers and the cats. If this doesn't work, I'll be taking mine in.
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