This paper describes the application of a life prediction method for stainless steel exhaust manifolds. Examination of the exhaust manifold cracks indicated that many of the failures could be attributed to out-of-phase thermal fatigue due to compressive strains that occur at high temperatures. Therefore, the plastic strain range was used as the crack initiation criteria. In addition, the comparison of the calculated thermal fatigue stress-strain hysteresis to the experimental hysteresis made it clear that it was essential to use the stress-strain data that was obtained through tensile and compression testing by keeping the test specimens at the maximum temperature of the thermal fatigue test mode. A finite element crack prediction method was developed using the aforementioned material data and good results were obtained.