Best Jeep 4.0 Header – Improve Performance and Fuel Economy!

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The question is…What is the Best Jeep 4.0 header?

Let’s talk about that…

The exhaust system is responsible for releasing the gases resulting from combustion. However, the design and quality of each component of your exhaust system will have a direct impact on your vehicle’s performance.

A performance exhaust system allows for faster, more efficient airflow to prevent undue pressure. This not only increases horsepower and torque but also provides better fuel consumption.

You may be looking to simply replace a cracked header (a very common problem with OEM manifolds) or you may be looking to get some of the above benefits.

Regardless,

This article provides a diverse list of products. So, whatever your reason for replacing your header, there will be something to suit your needs.

Jeep 4.0 headers – Overview

ImageRunning BoardCompatibilityDetails
This image has an empty alt attributeBanks 51327 Exhaust Manifold4.0L 6-CYL: 1991-1999 WRANGLER, 1991-1998 CHEROKEE, 1991-1992 COMANCHE
This image has an empty alt attributeDorman 674-196 Header – Jeep 1991-994.0L 6-CYL: Jeep Wrangler, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, Comanche, TJ 1991-99
This image has an empty alt attributeJDMSPEED Stainless Steel Exhaust Manifold & Gasket KitGrand Cherokee, Wrangler 1991-1999
This image has an empty alt attributeCCIYU Performance Exhaust Manifold Jeep Cherokee 1991-1999 models. Jeep Comanche 1991 – 1992. Jeep Grand Cherokee 1993 -1998. Jeep TJ 1997 -1999 Jeep Wrangler 1991-1995 & 1997-1999.
This image has an empty alt attributeECCPP Manifold Set Stainless Steel Front1991 to 1999 Cherokee. 1991 to 1992 Comanche. 1993 to 1998 Grand Cherokee. 1997 to 1999 TJ. 1991 to 1999 Wrangle.

4.0 Jeep Headers – Detailed Reviews

Remember, when dealing with car parts like this, it is very important to make sure you have an exact fit for your current Jeep Model, year, etc. A great way to do this is to load your vehicle detail into the Amazon ‘garage’ which will immediately tell you if the part fits or not.

Often, the same manufacturer will have an option that does fit your exact model so don’t fret if initially, you don’t get a match. We have provided general options below that can point you in the right direction in terms of reputable brands and what to look out for in a quality product.

1. Banks 51327 Exhaust Manifold


This header from Banks is a really solid and popular option when for Jeeps. It is a more upmarket option but it matches its price in terms of quality and performance.

It is made of 409 stainless steel tubing which has good corrosion resistance and unlike the OEM part, it is not prone to cracking. The mandrel-bent design provides improves airflow over welded options.

The OEM manifolds Flange has alignment issues which have been corrected in Banks’ ½” thick precision ported and machined flange. The fit is perfect so airflow is not interrupted.

For those who are well versed in exhaust jargon,

This exhaust manifold has a longer center tube in the 6-cylinder exhaust collector. The benefit of this is that it that the system is able to better capture exhaust ‘pulses’, and turn them into torque within its ‘operating range’. More simply put, the design is better as quickly expelling exhausts gases which provides torque increases.

Each tube of this exhaust manifold is welded to the flange twice. Both inside and out. Overall, this system is built to be tough and long-lasting so well worth your consideration.

PROS

  • Mandrel bent
  • High-perfmance
  • Precision ported and machined flange
  • Twice-welded flange
  • Overall, robust and high-quality build
  • 5 year limited warranty

CONS

  • 409 stainless steel will get surface rust over time
  • Higher price bracket

2. Dorman 674-196 Header


Dorman brand is one of the leaders in the field of aftermarket headers. If you are not necessarily looking for improved performance and just want to replace your broken header this may be the part for you.

The reason being, it offers a direct replacement. It’s an exact-fit Kit that replaces the factory-installed exhaust manifold for select Jeep models.

When it comes to materials and design, they have covered the bases. It is made of robust stainless steel tubing and its overall construction is resistant to deformation, cracking, and leaking.

Dorman’s Exhaust headers include hardware and gaskets for a whole installation. Furthermore, the product has been quality tested to the highest standard ensuring that it is up to standard.

PROS

  • Stainless steel construction
  • Perfect OEM replacement
  • Warp, crack and Leak-resistant
  • A rigorous quality inspection to ensure product standards
  • limited lifetime warranty

CONS

  • No major performance enhacement
  • Welded construction slightly inhibits airflow

3. JDMSPEED Stainless Steel Exhaust Manifold & Gasket Kit Replacement


This is another good OEM replacement.

It is made of sturdier stainless than the original hardware and in general, is a more robust option.

This is a budget pick so the price is good and you will get a part that does exactly what the original was intended to do! If that’s what you are looking for and your budget is low, this may be just what you were looking for.

PROS

  • Direct facotry replacement
  • Stainless construction
  • Low price

CONS

  • No performance enhancement

4. CCIYU Performance Exhaust Manifold


Since we were getting bored with simple factory replacement, it seemed appropriate to bring in a header that will add some power. Thus, this product from CCIY will do just that.

It will fit select models perfectly but its design has been adapted from the original part to have better flow. Hence, the better performance. Not to mention the great price point you get such a performance upgrade.

It is made from black-coated mild steel of high quality. The Flange has been TIG Welded and then finished with a CNC Machine. So overall, your bases should be covered from longevity, compatibility, to performance.

If you are looking for direct factory replacement they also have this option!

PROS

  • Better airflow design
  • Sleek black coating
  • Price Range is low for a performance header

CONS

  • Slighlty lower end of the quality spectrum

5. ECCPP Manifold Set


ECCPP is known for manufacturing a wide range of auto parts. This is a manifold designed, like some of the others, to perform the exact function of the original part.

The difference, however, is the quality of the construction.

This exhaust manifold model is made of stainless steel and designed to resist corrosion, cracking, deformation and leaking.

Once again, if an exact replacement is your speed, have a look at this to see if it fits your needs.

PROS

  • Perfect funtional replacement for original
  • 12 months warranty
  • Corrosion, warping, cracking and leaking resistant
  • Good after-sales service by ECCPP

CONS

  • No performance upgrades
  • Price is equivalent to quality

Buying Considerations

Before you dive right in and buy a header for your Jeep there are a few considerations you’ll want to think about.

Performance improvement or not

The first thing you’ll want to as yourself is if you want any improvement in performance with your replacement part. With a performance header, you can get 5-10% increases in horsepower as well as potential increases in MPG (miles per gallon).

On the other hand, you may just want your part to perform the exact function as your OEM part. Even if you are simply looking for a direct replacement, you will generally get a higher quality part that is less prone to cracking.

Your choice will have an impact on the price of the header as a good performance manifold will cost more than a simple OEM style replacement.

Materials

For Jeep headers, you have options made of both stainless steel and coated mild steel.

Mild steel is slightly cheaper than stainless steel but you will not get the same longevity and durability. Stainless steel, assuming it is of high quality, will be less prone to rust.

A lot of strain is placed on the exhaust system with up to 900 ° C exhaust gases. You can imagine that if the materials you are using are not up to scratch they will be prone to warping and cracking.

Therefore, when it comes to materials you always want to go with the highest quality you can afford. This will make sure you have the best longevity for your header.

Design and manufacturing

You may have come across the term ‘mandrel-bent’ above. This is in contrast to parts that have been welded together. With mandrel-bending, you can bend a single tube of metal to get the shape you need.

This is a preferred method for welding because it allows for a better, unconstricted flow of exhaust gases.

Another design consideration is the flange. This is the part that connects to the next part of the exhaust system. See this image for reference:

jeep 4.0 header diagram

This is an important part because if it does not fit well, airflow will be restricted or in worse cases, cause leaks. So, double welds and CNC machining are things to look out for when it comes to flanges as they are an important aspect of your header.

Lastly, any sort of testing, especially Dyno-testing is a good sign as speaks to the quality and reliability of the functionality and performance boost of the product.

Installation

Another consideration is installation.

To replace a manifold is no simple task as you are replacing a part that is attached to the engine so access is not easy. Furthermore, it requires a good about of know-how and technical ability.

You need to assess whether this is something you have the capacity to do yourself or if you need to outsource the installation. If you need to outsource, you should budget for the extra cost.

Lastly, speaking to the major task of removing your old manifold and replacing it with a new one; This is not something you want to do frequently which is also why you should not skimp too much on a new header.

The last thing you want is your brand new header to crack in a year’s time and have to go through that process again.

If you are curious about how the installation process this video shows the installation of our top pick by Banks:

Compatibility

Before buying an exhaust header, you should first check the model and year of your 4.0 Jeep. A new header can cost you anywhere between $60 to $600 so you do not want to end up with something that doesn’t fit.

Brand

This is an obvious point but always check the reputability of the brand you are choosing. It helps to look at other reviews and customer experiences with the company. Furthermore, you may want to look at this like warranties and after-service care.

Conclusion

The exhaust manifold is a key part of the exhaust system so if you are looking to replace it you should make sure you pick the best. To that end, we have constructed a list of the products and brands you’ll want to look at.

There are options that will improve your performance and options that will simply replace the function of your original.

If you are looking for a performance upgrade our top pick is the Banks Exhaust Manifold. On the other hand, if you simply want to replace the original with a higher quality part you may want to look at the Dorman Header which is a great, reliable option.

Final tip: to reduce your car’s CO2 emissions and save fuel, check the exhaust system every 50,000 km or once a year and avoid bumps on the underside of the vehicle.

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