The Best Exhaust Gaskets For Harley Davidson Motorcycles in 2023

This is my buying guide on the best exhaust gaskets for Harley motorcycles in 2023. Below is a quick summary of my top recommendations. Scroll further down to read our in depth, hands on reviews, for each exhaust gasket.

MOST USEFUL

James Exhaust Gasket Kit

  • High quality product
  • Seals well with cylinder head
  • Holds up to increased pressure
  • Comes with different nuts and bolts
  • Easy to install
  • Compatible with vast majority of Harley models
  • Included nuts and bolts also fit very well
Best Overall

Vance & Hines Exhaust Port Gaskets

  • High quality materials
  • Quality controlled production
  • Flat edges instead of beveled
  • Fit perfectly on the cylinder head
  • Create a precise seal
  • Fit a lot of older model bikes as well
  • Usable with modern engines as well
WORTHY CONSIDERATION

James Gasket Copper Ring Style

  • Secure fit
  • Resistant to wear and tear
  • Holds up well to corrosion
  • Reduces excess shifting of the pipe
  • Great for use with older models
  • Cheaper option that works well
  • Minimizes leaks
  • Copper is great at distributing heat
  • Prevents warping of gaskets

In my quest to find the best exhaust gaskets for Harley Davidson Motorcycles, I’ve put together this guide to share my hands-on experience.

You see, exhaust gaskets must align precisely with the cylinder head to do their job. A misalignment, no matter how minor, just won’t cut it.

So I rolled up my sleeves and tested a wide range of Harley Davidson exhaust gaskets. I was searching for the one that not only performs the best but is also durable and provides the most bang for the buck.

After hours of testing and examining, ‘Vance and Hines’ caught my eye, producing my favorite exhaust gaskets. But they weren’t alone; other manufacturers were offering some quality options too.

So, join me as we dive into the details to find the best Harley exhaust gasket for your bike. Trust me, having been down in the garage with these myself, I know what works, and I’m excited to help you make the perfect choice.


Overall Best

Vance & Hines Exhaust Port Gaskets For Harley 1984-2021

When I got my hands on Vance and Hines’ exhaust port gaskets, I realized they were the best performing in my lineup. At first glance, they looked indistinguishable from the stock gaskets, which meant they would line up precisely with the cylinder head and exhaust pipe. That perfect alignment created a seal that didn’t allow any exhaust gases to escape, and I could feel the maintenance in engine performance as I tested them.

What really caught my eye about these gaskets was the flat edges. Unlike beveled edges that leave tiny gaps and can make the bike underperform, these flat edges offered a snug fit. Plus, these gaskets fit a long list of Harley Davidson models – I counted almost 40 years’ worth.

I was equally impressed with the quality of the manufacturing. A buddy of mine at the shop has had these same exhaust gaskets installed on his bike for a couple of years now, and they haven’t missed a beat. His bike’s a workhorse, with over 50,000 miles on the odometer, and it still runs like a charm. The Vance and Hines’ gaskets have really proven their durability in real-world conditions.

Pros
  • High quality materials
  • Quality controlled production
  • Flat edges instead of beveled
  • Fit perfectly on the cylinder head
  • Create a precise seal
  • Fit a lot of older model bikes as well
  • Usable with modern engines as well
Cons
  • Do not fit the V-Rod

Most Useful

James Exhaust Gasket Kit For Harley Davidson

James’ exhaust gaskets caught my attention as another solid option for a Harley Davidson motorcycle. When I unboxed the kit, I found a complete package with high-quality gaskets and all the relevant parts that made the installation process a breeze.

Unlike other kits I’ve used, James’ package didn’t just come with the gaskets. They went the extra mile, including a series of premium nuts and bolts for installation. This was a welcome touch, as it eliminated the need to use old, worn parts that might have caused problems later on.

When I put these gaskets to the test, they performed admirably, creating a solid seal that held up even under increased pressure. I didn’t detect any exhaust gases leaking out. There was just one hiccup: one of the multiple packages I ordered arrived a bit damaged and slightly opened. But considering everything else, I chalked that up to shipping damage, and it didn’t detract from my overall positive impression of James’ exhaust gaskets.

Pros
  • High quality product
  • Seals well with cylinder head
  • Holds up to increased pressure
  • Comes with different nuts and bolts
  • Easy to install
  • Compatible with vast majority of Harley models
  • Included nuts and bolts also fit very well
Cons
  • Some reports say C-Clips are tighter than OEM

Worthy Consideration

James Gasket Copper Ring Style Exhaust Gasket

When I was on the hunt for a copper exhaust gasket, James Gasket had exactly what I needed. Their Copper Ring Style exhaust port gasket caught my eye with its promise of excellent performance, value, and an effective seal for the cylinder head.

Having worked with various materials, I can vouch for copper as an outstanding choice for exhaust gaskets. When I installed the James copper gasket on my Harley, the tight seal it created was palpable, even giving me that extra bit of power I crave. I was impressed by the unique properties of the copper gaskets, preventing them from shifting and keeping the fit secure.

Riding with these gaskets, I noticed how they reduced excess movement and held up remarkably well over time. They proved to be not only durable but effective at fortifying the seals, making them more robust and resilient to wear and tear. The superior corrosion resistance was the icing on the cake, leading me to believe that this might be the last gasket I’d ever need to buy. The experience with James’ copper gaskets truly reinforced my belief in the quality and effectiveness of this product.

Pros
  • Secure fit
  • Resistant to wear and tear
  • Holds up well to corrosion
  • Reduces excess shifting of the pipe
  • Great for use with older models
  • Cheaper option that works well
  • Minimizes leaks
  • Copper is great at distributing heat
  • Prevents warping of gaskets
Cons
  • May require slightly different fastener torque values than OEM

Author
Hugo Alais

Hi, I'm Hugo, I'm a motorcycle enthusiast who’s been riding for the last 10 years. I'm passionate about all things motorcycles and started Bikes Future to help other riders make the right motorcycle moves. I ride a white Kawasaki Ninja 400. You can find out more about me and my experience with motorcycling here.