The engines in high-performance off-road vehicles share a common enemy: excessive vibration. It'll not only shake your liver; sometimes, it will cause your exhaust header hardware to loosen up. If you start noticing your engine making a ticking sound or becoming excessively noisy (not in a good way), you may have a loose exhaust header bolt. Loosened exhaust header hardware can eventually damage your engine, so you need to deal with it pronto. One straightforward fix attempt you should try first is tightening or replacing your header bolts. Sometimes just snugging the bolts down a little will hold them in place. If that doesn't work, you can try replacing the bolts with new ones.
Fool Proof Design to Keep'em Tight
Off-roaders have tried many little tricks over the years to hold their exhaust manifold bolts in place. The problem is that most engines have such a small space tolerance around the headers that it's a real pain to access the bolts without some extensive disassembly. Some shade tree mechanics that manage to get a wrench on the bolts have tried various thread adhesives and lock washers with mixed results. Stage 8 header bolts feature a clip that snaps the bolt tight. This design is the best way to make sure your bolts stay tight and keep you from blowing a manifold gasket and messing up your off-road party time.
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