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Old 04-06-2016, 06:26 AM Thread Starter
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Various Engine Mods

Hey, all. I've been looking to get a new catback exhaust system for my Base Cobalt. I've been looking at a set by ProTuningLab but I would like to recieve some addition input on other systems and this one. I've been having a noisy exhaust that rattles so this seems like the most appropriate time to replace it.

Also would a heat shielded Short Ram have any benefits to the car's performance? Or should I purge the extra cash for a real Cold Air system?

Driving a 2005 Chevy Cobalt Base.
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Old 04-06-2016, 06:45 AM
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Won't get much benifit from either except more noise.

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Old 04-06-2016, 07:23 AM
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Well... sorta.

The stock airbox is definitely restrictive, so a short ram will help a tiny bit. A true cold air may or may not actually give you more power than a short ram.

There's a great video of a guy who has decades of experience with cold air/short ram intakes and he came to the conclusion that tube length matters more than placement of the filter. In his experience, the factory airbox was usually in just the right spot, so it seems to me that finding a cold air/short ram that puts it in approximately the same spot should theoretically give you the most benefit.

A K&N short ram will put the actual filter in the same spot, but a cold air will put the filter in the same spot as the factory air "silencer" where initial air intake takes place. I don't know for sure which will make more power, but I went ahead and got a K&N and have loved it.



You might also consider buying a Tsudo, ZZP, or GMPP catback. Those three are the top recommended catbacks around here. I've got the ZZP and absolutely loving it. Also, as long as you're doing exhaust anyway, I'd suggest doing header and downpipe. I think it's almost a waste of a catback to put it on the stock exhaust manifold and downpipe because you haven't eliminated the first restriction that exhaust gasses encounter. Now, if you're going just for sound, then yeah, get just a catback, but if you're looking for performance, do the full exhaust. The ZZP midlength header & downpipe is the most recommended around here. That's what I have on mine, and again, loving it.


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Old 04-07-2016, 06:42 AM Thread Starter
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I did plan on getting new headers and a downpipe, I heard swaping the 2.4 header is common, but I feel one designed for the 2.2 may work better. Might just be me though. I'm probably gonna do the exhaust system first and then the air intake since it costs a bit more and makes more sense doing it that way. The car has been sitting around when I bought it so I'm sure a good amount of general matinence needs to be done.

Also any downpipe kits/etc you guys recommend? I am on a small budget, but if spending a little more means better quality then so be it.

Driving a 2005 Chevy Cobalt Base.

Last edited by Rom; 04-07-2016 at 07:20 AM.
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Old 04-07-2016, 06:53 AM
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I may be wrong, but I don't believe there's any difference between the stock L61 exhaust manifold and the LE5 (you could use an LSJ for a slight boost though).

If you want a header, go straight to ZZP and get yourself a midlength. If you're planning to stay NA, go for the 1.5" primaries and the 200 cell cat. You'll also have the option of adding an extra bung for a wideband O2 sensor, which is basically just for tuning. Get it if you want, but it's optional.

Also, you'll be prompted to choose your transmission. Downpipes (DPs) are not interchangeable between automatic cars and manual ones.

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Old 04-07-2016, 07:18 AM
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I did plan on getting new headers and a downpipe, I heard swaping the 2.4 header is common, but I feel one designed for the 2.2 may work better. Might just be me though.
Since you have a base model, getting the exhaust manifold from the 2.2 would just match exactly what you already have. I'd suggest getting a ZZP header/downpipe over anything else.

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I may be wrong, but I don't believe there's any difference between the stock L61 exhaust manifold and the LE5 (you could use an LSJ for a slight boost though).

If you want a header, go straight to ZZP and get yourself a midlength. If you're planning to stay NA, go for the 1.5" primaries and the 200 cell cat. You'll also have the option of adding an extra bung for a wideband O2 sensor, which is basically just for tuning. Get it if you want, but it's optional.

Also, you'll be prompted to choose your transmission. Downpipes (DPs) are not interchangeable between automatic cars and manual ones.
Just so you know, they don't list the 200 cell cat as an option anymore, but if you email them with your order number and request it, they'll make it. It's important to note that if you don't get it tuned, then you'll get a Check Engine Light. It doesn't cause any actual problems, but if you get the 400 cell cat, then you don't have to get a tune to avoid the CEL.


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Old 04-07-2016, 07:44 AM
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personally i havent done any exhaust but the ZZP looks the best to me, also the CAI is probably your best bet, youll get a little better gas mileage (not much, maybe 2-3 miles) and the hp gain isn't much more either but the sound is beefier, same with the catback.

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Old 04-07-2016, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
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The ZZP header kit looks pretty good, Bit expensive, but its not impossible. I noticed some additional O2 options like a rear bung on the catless downpipe and one for a wideband gauge, would either of these options correct the O2 sensor issues or will i have to call in for the 200 cell? Also whats the difference between the 200 and 400 cell besides cost?

Edit: The K&N short ram kit is a bit pricey, Are there any other alternatives for SRI?

Driving a 2005 Chevy Cobalt Base.

Last edited by Rom; 04-07-2016 at 09:38 AM.
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Old 04-07-2016, 09:43 AM
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The ZZP header kit looks pretty good, Bit expensive, but its not impossible. I noticed some additional O2 options like a rear bung on the catless downpipe and one for a wideband gauge, would either of these options correct the O2 sensor issues or will i have to call in for the 200 cell? Also whats the difference between the 200 and 400 cell besides cost?
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You'll also have the option of adding an extra bung for a wideband O2 sensor, which is basically just for tuning. Get it if you want, but it's optional.
The 200 cell cat is a less dense catalytic converter. This means that it allows more airflow, but also does less to clean the exhaust. Since it's so high flowing, it's actually out of spec for the Cobalt's computer, and thus throws a Check Engine Light. Luckily, this doesn't cause any problems, and doesn't put the car into "limp mode" but if you want to avoid it entirely without getting a tune, get the 400 cell cat. It's a bit more dense, so less airflow, slightly less horsepower gain, but it's within spec for the computer and won't throw a CEL.

If you get the catless downpipe, it will definitely throw a CEL, since that's completely getting rid of the emissions system. Also, that makes your vehicle no longer road legal. The 200 cell cat gives the most horsepower gain while remaining legal (unless you're in California, in which case you need the California cat). Since the CEL is related to the cat, none of those options will prevent it.

The only way to get the 200 cell cat is to email them just before and after you place your order. Be sure to ask nicely!

It would be about $30 cheaper if you wanted to buy the ZZP shorty header and 2.2L downpipe. These are essentially the same lengths as stock, although they're definitely more high flowing. The shorty and midlength headers add power in different RPM ranges, so do a bit of research and figure out where you want the power.

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Edit: The K&N short ram kit is a bit pricey, Are there any other alternatives for SRI?
There's an Injen short ram intake, but I think it's more expensive. ZZP has a "high flow 2.2L intake tube" that is essentially a short ram intake. Get that and a drop in K&N filter and you'd essentially have a short ram intake with the stock airbox filter. If you do that, consider removing the "air silencer." There should be a thread somewhere on how to do it. If you don't want to remove the bumper, you can use a hacksaw to remove one of the plastic mounting arms.
You could also look around for a used K&N or Injen.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Product Links:
ZZP Midlength Header & Downpipe
ZZP Shorty Header
ZZP 2.5" Downpipe (Fits on Shorty or stock Header) You could also get the 3" downpipe, but if you're not Turbo/Supercharging, you don't need it.
ZZP High Flow Intake Tube
K&N Drop In Filter


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Last edited by Parthros; 04-07-2016 at 10:12 AM. Reason: Adding info & product links
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Old 04-07-2016, 10:19 AM
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Quote:
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The 200 cell cat is a less dense catalytic converter. This means that it allows more airflow, but also does less to clean the exhaust. Since it's so high flowing, it's actually out of spec for the Cobalt's computer, and thus throws a Check Engine Light. Luckily, this doesn't cause any problems, and doesn't put the car into "limp mode" but if you want to avoid it entirely without getting a tune, get the 400 cell cat. It's a bit more dense, so less airflow, slightly less horsepower gain, but it's within spec for the computer and won't throw a CEL.

If you get the catless downpipe, it will definitely throw a CEL, since that's completely getting rid of the emissions system. Also, that makes your vehicle no longer road legal. The 200 cell cat gives the most horsepower gain while remaining legal (unless you're in California, in which case you need the California cat). Since the CEL is related to the cat, none of those options will prevent it.

The only way to get the 200 cell cat is to email them just before and after you place your order. Be sure to ask nicely!

It would be about $30 cheaper if you wanted to buy the ZZP shorty header and 2.2L downpipe. These are essentially the same lengths as stock, although they're definitely more high flowing. The shorty and midlength headers add power in different RPM ranges, so do a bit of research and figure out where you want the power.



There's an Injen short ram intake, but I think it's more expensive. ZZP has a "high flow 2.2L intake tube" that is essentially a short ram intake. Get that and a drop in K&N filter and you'd essentially have a short ram intake with the stock airbox filter. If you do that, consider removing the "air silencer." There should be a thread somewhere on how to do it. If you don't want to remove the bumper, you can use a hacksaw to remove one of the plastic mounting arms.
You could also look around for a used K&N or Injen.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Product Links:
ZZP Midlength Header & Downpipe
ZZP Shorty Header
ZZP 2.5" Downpipe (Fits on Shorty or stock Header) You could also get the 3" downpipe, but if you're not Turbo/Supercharging, you don't need it.
ZZP High Flow Intake Tube
K&N Drop In Filter
Right, different headers will move around the powerband a little. As a general rule, shorties will increase low end, but sacrifice top. Longtubes will do the opposite, that is to say weaken low end pull but geive you more top end power. Midlengths are the Goldilocks of the header world. Not too hot, nor too cold. Just right.

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