BBK Shorty Headers Install Experience and Review... - Mustang Evolution

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Old 02-15-2015, 08:11 PM   #1
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BBK Shorty Headers Install Experience and Review...

After being on the fence awhile about these I finally gave them a shot. Even after purchasing them they sat in my room for another month taunting me as I was worried about the install.

Sure enough, you guys were right, installing them is a real pain. I was quoted $600 from my local mustang shop to install them, so I opted to try it myself. I got through three of the four flange bolts connecting the headers to the x-pipe and removed the starter, and was completely spent...haha.

Now in my defense, I was fighting a cold that day, and something about working under the car on ramps pulled an old sports injury in my back. Regardless, after those first few bolts I decided to call it a day as I was worried I might run out of time (and my car is my DD) and or energy to finish.

So unless you have lots of time available or a garage where you can finish the job later I would highly recommend you pay someone else for this install (or at the very least get a friend to help you with the work).

I got lucky, I talked to another mechanic (non-mustang shop) and they quoted me $160 for the install, so I had them do it. Even they complained about how long it took to tighten the nuts back on with the BBK headers.

Onto the actual review. I'm still running my stock tune, but the car definitely feels like it pulls a little harder down low in the RPM's. But more importantly (at least to me) the car sounds better too. I was already running a JLT intake and magnaflow street exhaust. But the BBK headers added just a bit more noise and made the sound a little deeper just as advertised.

The tone is also crisper. Its hard to describe, but before the headers my exhaust made a steady noise like blahhhhhhhhh (inside the car). But now it has a little more definition to it; more like blaaaAAAaaaAAAhhh. I guess I'm saying it sounds a little more like a V8. The idle sounds great too. (outside the car).. it has a cam type loop to it.

So in conclusion, if you're on the fence about these headers I would definitely recommend them. I'd suggest getting some quotes on the install first though, unless you have a garage or some other dedicated space to do the work yourself.

Once the weather clears up I'll attach a video.
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Old 02-15-2015, 08:46 PM   #2
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Very nice. I might get these installed in a couple of months. You will love it even more if you choose to get a bbk throttle body and tune later

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Old 02-15-2015, 08:51 PM   #3
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Did I read this right? You took off the starter?
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Old 02-15-2015, 09:13 PM   #4
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Did I read this right? You took off the starter?
Yeah... removing the starter (just the bolts... and letting it rest on the frame) made accessing the other flange bolts on the passenger side much easier.
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Old 02-15-2015, 10:29 PM   #5
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Ratcheting wrenches are your friend.

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Old 02-15-2015, 11:24 PM   #6
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Yeah I think removing the starter is total overkill. I pretty much was able to do the whole job from the top. I just jacked up the car a little just to tighten the bolts from the mid pipe to the header. This is actually a very easy install, it just takes time and patience.
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Old 02-15-2015, 11:35 PM   #7
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I finally got around to my install today, I started at 12 and wasn't done when I quit an hour ago. Jesus lord were those bolts on tight, all thats left is tightening the header bolts and I'm good. Its a PITA though, I hope its worth it.


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Old 02-15-2015, 11:51 PM   #8
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I finally got around to my install today, I started at 12 and wasn't done when I quit an hour ago. Jesus lord were those bolts on tight, all thats left is tightening the header bolts and I'm good. Its a PITA though, I hope its worth it.


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Lol, you haven't even got to the hard part yet. The tightening is the worst part...you'll see why.


EDIT: Wait, what header bolts are you talking about? The mid pipe? If so those are easy.
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Old 02-15-2015, 11:53 PM   #9
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Lol, you haven't even got to the hard part yet. The tightening is the worst part...you'll see why.

Ahhh don't say that (x I need to sleep soundly tonight lol. Needless to say I think I'm done with DIY for a while after tomorrow morning.


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Old 02-16-2015, 03:45 AM   #10
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BBK Shorty Headers Install Experience and Review...

Jeez, 600$. That place would never come to my mind for anything dealing with an install ever again after hearing that. I had the shorty's installed on my 14 for around 25$ at a speed shop owned by pep boys. It took them about an hour and half to 2(cool down time included) at most.

It's not a difficult job, it's just time consuming cause half of the bolts on it you can only spin the wrench a tiny bit at a time and it's little space to work with(you have to take wrench off and put back on like 5 times to get one complete spin on the nuts, you know what I'm saying). The starter doesn't have to be removed.

I had FM force 2 axle backs on it at the time and BBK catted x pipe. didn't notice anything much different from it after the headers were installed or maybe I did, probably just my expectations for the headers were a little too high to notice the gains. Weeks later I had to replace my FlowMaster force 2's now cause at higher RPMS it would cause a terrible "rattle can" noise, they always gave that noise out at higher RPMS, it's just now it seemed to happen lower now, a little over 3k when used to be around 4k. Me coming from a 2000 GT with full exhaust, that rattle can noise was simply unacceptable and I just couldn't come to terms of just settling with it, it was FlowMaster exhaust too, sounded sick on the GT.

I went with the pypes and need I say I was and still am extremely impressed with the tone and sound through the entire RPM band. I seriously wouldn't have it no other way, no rattle can/fart can noise at all, the higher the RPMS the better it sounds, completely different tone I love it, with FlowMasters F2's the higher the RPMS the higher the pitch got and then the rattle can noise along with it, all eliminated with this set up I have now. Now I have these 571$ FlowMaster force 2's sitting in the house in bubble wrap along with all my factory parts. I was skeptical about getting these at first cause these pypes came at like half the price of the force 2's, but I took a chance with the reviews and it came through. It's a little louder than the GT but then again I always thought my GT needed a little more volume and now I have it. All in all I'm satisfied.

May go into turbos and all that in the future who knows.


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Old 02-16-2015, 10:24 AM   #11
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You had yours installed for 25.00??
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Old 02-16-2015, 10:34 AM   #12
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Yes, 25$ I was truly expecting it to be around the 100+ range but when they were done and I came in from the garage, he pulled it up on the computer and it was only 25$. I don't know they're rates per hour but it took about 2hrs since they had the car, they more than likely didn't start working till it cooled down though.


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Old 02-16-2015, 10:55 AM   #13
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Yes, 25$ I was truly expecting it to be around the 100+ range but when they were done and I came in from the garage, he pulled it up on the computer and it was only 25$. I don't know they're rates per hour but it took about 2hrs since they had the car, they more than likely didn't start working till it cooled down though.


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Did you pop the hood and actually see them on the car? Just kidding! Not sure how they can stay in business with those rates.


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Old 02-16-2015, 11:01 AM   #14
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25.00 is unheard of, shoot even 100.00 would be a dream for most of us. I got a quote of 400.00 to install mine. Consider yourself lucky, I'm sure most of us here don't have access to install fees that low...

Where do you live?
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:31 AM   #15
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BBK Shorty Headers Install Experience and Review...

It should have been cheaper than that though. Not even a month later I heard this grinding noise every time I made sharp U turn, and it started to get worse and worse by the day(it sounded really severe and it only had 7000miles) so I went to dealer to check on transmission cause the grinding was coming exactly where the transmission sits underneath.

They diagnosed it and they came to me and said that the mid pipe was touching frame. They said it like it was a horrible thing, but I laughed it off cause all that time I was sure it had to be the transmission grinding the internals all up somehow, so it was definitely good news lol. They didn't even charge me the 89.99 for the diagnoses. I went home with noise still present, jacked it up and seen where it made contact, I also noticed almost immediately that the left side was lower than the right so I pushed it up with my hand and it went up way too easy. Lifted the hood and checked the headers and boom, driver side one was missing screws and wobbly. Probably why it took him faster than I thought it would take him in the first place, he never really tighten the screws.

I proceeded to actually do the install over myself, which means I had to check and re torque all the nuts on the headers.... I pretty much had to do the whole thing over myself.

Oh and when I was finished with all, this is when I felt an increase in throttle response immediately after. It just felt like the whole car was lighter some how.

Lesson learned, avoid Pep boys to do my installs or just do it myself when I have the time.

Oh I live in Delaware and got it done in Bear. 400$ is way to much for an install I would think. I never payed anything near that for an install.


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Old 02-16-2015, 11:51 AM   #16
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Personally, I wouldn't even get my oil changed at Pep Boys...
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Old 02-16-2015, 11:56 AM   #17
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Personally, I wouldn't even get my oil changed at Pep Boys...
Agreed. Then again I won't let anyone change my oil. They never do it right lol

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Old 02-16-2015, 11:56 AM   #18
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Agreed now, but at that time it was like they were the only ones available to do it right then and there so I went with them. But now I know.


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Old 02-22-2015, 06:50 PM   #19
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As promised here are some before and after videos. It didn't sound all that bad before, but in the after videos its definitely deeper and a little louder.


Before:




After:

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Old 02-22-2015, 07:21 PM   #20
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Did you notice any difference in power after the install? I've heard mixed reviews about them.
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Old 02-22-2015, 08:05 PM   #21
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Did you notice any difference in power after the install? I've heard mixed reviews about them.
I did the install primarily for an improvement in sound. Although they certainly make the engine bay look better too.

That said, it may just be my imagination, but the car does feel slightly faster/more responsive to me in the low RPMs.

I think I've read these headers are supposed to provide around 10hp/tq, so I wouldn't expect much real improvement in power.

Maybe somebody else can chime in with dyno results.
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Old 02-22-2015, 08:14 PM   #22
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I did the install primarily for an improvement in sound. Although they certainly make the engine bay look better too.

That said, it may just be my imagination, but the car does feel slightly faster/more responsive to me in the low RPMs.

I think I've read these headers are supposed to provide around 10hp/tq, so I wouldn't expect much real improvement in power.

Maybe somebody else can chime in with dyno results.

No it's not your imagination, theses give us a little more power down low where we need it. It's a nice upgrade.
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