The Ford F150, equipped with the 3.5L EcoBoost engine, has faced challenges with its stock exhaust manifold. While the engine is celebrated for merging the fuel efficiency of a smaller engine with the power of a larger one, it has not been without its flaws. The high temperatures reached by the twin turbos have strained the exhaust manifolds, leading to durability concerns and maintenance issues such as warped manifolds and broken bolts due to the heat affecting the manifold’s metal and its integration with the engine block.

In response to these persistent issues, BD has developed an aftermarket exhaust manifold that promises to outperform the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) part. Their solution is engineered to withstand the intense heat and stress that the EcoBoost engine generates, offering a more reliable and robust alternative for truck owners. The BD exhaust manifold aims to resolve the common problems faced by Ford's original design, providing an enhanced driving experience for F150 enthusiasts.

The Ford F150 3.5L EcoBoost Engine Challenges

The 3.5L EcoBoost engine has been a significant selling point for the Ford F150, attracting customers with its promise of V6 fuel economy and V8 performance. This engine's innovative design and advanced turbocharging technology have made it a popular choice among truck enthusiasts looking for efficiency without sacrificing power.

Despite its popularity, the EcoBoost engine is not without its shortcomings. One of the critical challenges has been managing the intense heat generated by the twin turbos, which can spin at speeds up to 170,000 rpm. The compact size of the engine bay compounds the issue, leaving little room for heat dissipation and placing considerable stress on the exhaust manifold and surrounding components.

The extreme heat generated by the EcoBoost engine can lead to a range of problems. Steel components, such as the exhaust manifold bolts, may weaken over time when subjected to continuous high temperatures. Additionally, the disparity between the thermal expansion rates of different metals, like the steel bolts and the aluminum head, can cause them to fuse. This thermal mismatch not only risks breaking the bolts during removal but also compromises the integrity of the manifold itself, potentially leading to warped exhaust manifolds and blown gaskets.

BD's Innovative Approach

Recognizing the issues with the OEM exhaust manifold, BD has developed a comprehensive Exhaust Manifold Kit tailored for the Ford F150 3.5L EcoBoost. This kit results from extensive research and innovation and is designed to offer a more robust and durable solution to the manifold problems faced by EcoBoost owners.

BD's manifold kit includes a range of design improvements over the original. By utilizing all available stud locations, the manifold has increased resistance to warping. The design also features improved heat resilience, which allows for a more stable thermal environment within the engine bay, thereby reducing the likelihood of component failure.

Material choice is another area where BD has enhanced the manifold's design. By selecting materials that better withstand high temperatures, such as cast iron over steel, and incorporating longer studs with spacers, the manifold is better able to handle the expansion and contraction without causing the studs to break. This attention to detail in material selection and heat management underscores BD's commitment to providing a superior aftermarket product for the EcoBoost engine.

Comparative Analysis: OEM vs. BD Manifold

Ford has acknowledged the issues with the original exhaust manifold and made updates in an effort to improve its performance and reliability. These updates were meant to enhance the manifold's ability to withstand the extreme conditions within the engine bay of the F150 3.5L EcoBoost.

Despite Ford's efforts, certain flaws remain in their updated exhaust manifold. These could include insufficient use of stud locations, which can lead to warping and gasket leaks, and the use of materials that may not offer the best resistance to the high temperatures produced by the EcoBoost engine.

BD's EcoBoost exhaust manifold design addresses these persistent issues by fully utilizing all stud locations to secure the manifold, preventing warping and leaks. The choice of materials, such as cast iron which is less prone to thermal expansion than steel, combined with the inclusion of stud spacers, allows for better thermal management. This design ensures a tighter seal and greater longevity under high-temperature conditions, making BD’s manifold a more robust and dependable option for the F150 EcoBoost.

Key Features of the BD Manifold

The BD exhaust manifold takes advantage of every available stud location on the engine head, using all 11 positions. This comprehensive approach ensures a more secure fit and greater stability, reducing the likelihood of warping and gasket failure that can result from an unevenly secured manifold.

BD selected cast iron for their manifold, which is inherently more resistant to the high-temperature conditions of turbocharged engines like the EcoBoost. Cast iron's lower rate of thermal expansion compared to steel reduces the stress on manifold components during the heat cycle, enhancing the overall durability of the manifold.

To further mitigate the risk of damage from thermal expansion, BD’s manifold includes longer studs complemented by spacers. These spacers extend the clamping length of the studs, allowing the manifold more freedom to expand and contract without putting undue stress on the studs. This innovative feature is crucial in preventing stud cracking, a common issue in high-heat environments.

The Verdict

BD’s EcoBoost exhaust manifold for the Ford F150 3.5L EcoBoost stands out with several key advantages over the OEM version. Its use of all available stud locations ensures a more stable and secure fit. The material choice of cast iron for the manifold better withstands the extreme temperatures generated by the engine, and the inclusion of stud spacers helps prevent common issues like stud cracking.

For consumers, selecting BD’s manifold improves the reliability and longevity of their F150 engine. The enhanced design means fewer worries about heat-related damages and less frequent replacements. This can lead to cost savings over time and a better overall ownership experience.

The success of BD Diesel’s manifold underscores the value of aftermarket solutions in the realm of vehicle performance enhancement. While OEM parts are designed for standard performance, aftermarket solutions like BD’s manifold are often crafted to address specific weaknesses, offering tailored improvements and pushing the boundaries of what a vehicle can achieve.


BD’s exhaust manifold for the Ford F150 3.5L EcoBoost represents a significant advancement over the standard OEM part. Its meticulous design maximizes stud usage for stability, employs durable materials suited for high temperatures, and integrates stud spacers to avert cracking, collectively offering a superior alternative.

The effectiveness of BD’s manifold highlights the crucial role of aftermarket parts in enhancing automotive performance. Such innovations not only provide immediate solutions to common issues but also drive the industry forward, setting new benchmarks for quality and reliability.

Owners experiencing problems with their EcoBoost exhaust manifolds are encouraged to consider BD’s manifold as a long-term solution. It’s a call to not settle for standard fixes when more robust, thoughtfully engineered options are available that can extend the life and improve the performance of their vehicles.