Ridgeline owners - what is your hitch setup? - Page 3 - Escape Trailer Owners Community

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Old 11-11-2015, 10:47 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo View Post
There are a fair number of members here who have commented on Andersen's excellent warranty service.
I'm not sure that's a good thing.
When I decided on the Andersen having had the Pro Series previously I said that in most cases you get what you paid for- but there are always exceptions. Unfortunately this is one of them. We were wearing ours out within one year. To their credit Andersen stood up the plate for us and gave us their MSRP refund. How many companies would do that? I wish it were different, but we're probably going back to the Pro Series. Reace suggested Fastway 2, however Etrailer says they don't sell very many of them and being that it is so new at ETI am skeptical.
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Old 11-11-2015, 10:49 PM   #22
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We use an Andersen hitch with our Ridgeline. It was installed by ETI. I've not had any problems with sway, but I also have no basis of comparison having never towed without it. There was a lot of discussion about the Andersen hitches in the forums a few years ago when we ordered so we ordered the hitch. I think it's a bit of a pain to hook up and get adjusted as the plate always moves 20 degrees or so when backing into a campsite and you have to drive it to straighten it out before finishing the adjustments.

I'd also echo the comments on making sure you keep the transmission and VTM fluids fresh. The Ridgeline doesn't have a tow haul mode on the current transmission so you risk transmission temps if you lock out the overdrive or get limited power on grades if you don't lock out the overdrive. We changed the tranny fluid before pickup and again at the end of this season, probably about 7k of towing time. My son-in-laws garage did the change and word is it was pretty dirty.
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Old 11-11-2015, 10:59 PM   #23
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Bill, from a previous post I gather you may be considering a different TV. From a safety perspective it appears that the Ridgeline is one of the better "Mid-Size V-6 SUV's" ETI claims can tow any of their products from a safety perspective with it's 122" wheelbase. Given that it still is near the top of it's specs for towing a 4000 lb+ trailer over distance.

What, if any alternative are you thinking of?
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Old 11-11-2015, 11:18 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
The spec's for a Honda Ridgeline list a GCWR of 10,000 with a GVWR for the vehicle of 6,000, this leaves a difference of 4,000 for towing...
Assuming that the GCWR and GVWR are correct - and I have no reason to question them - the conclusion that the towing capacity is only 4,000 pounds is simply incorrect, as already explained.

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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
I just googled the info and stated the result. If one chooses to ignore, at least others can gleam some help.
The GCWR and GVWR are good information (assuming the values are correct). The owners manual may have both of the values, and the placard will show the GVWR... both more authoritative sources. I hope that people do ignore the incorrect conclusion drawn from them.

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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
In addition the final gear ratio of 4.63 would seem to give dismal mpg while towing while allowing a larger tow capacity.
Final drive ratio is irrelevant except when taken in context with transmission ratios, tire overall diameter, and engine operating speed range... so any conclusion about final drive ratios based on dissimilar vehicles are not applicable.

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Originally Posted by cpaharley2008 View Post
Finally the full time all wheel drive may suffer over long term tow use.
Some of the toughest vehicles made have full time (or "permanent") all-wheel drive - think about the Unimog, Mercedes G-Wagen, and HMMWV/Hummer H1. Unless there is a specific issue with this particular Honda design, I don't see a concern... but I agree that it is worth checking if there have been problems in the decade that this vehicle has been sold.
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Old 11-12-2015, 12:00 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by floorpanel View Post
Mine does not have all wheel drive. Maybe they made some with all wheel drive and some without but I doubt it.
It is very common to offer vehicle models with a choice of two-wheel-drive and 4WD/AWD systems... some even have three or more drive systems available.

I had not heard of the Ridgeline being available without the VTM-4 all-wheel-drive - most certainly have it, and the Honda specs suggest that it was standard for every trim level in 2013 - but of course I don't know about every specific vehicle. The owner's manual describes VTM-4 as a standard feature. If your Ridgeline has a VTM-4 Lock button, it has AWD which is always active (even when that button is off).

VTM-4 normally drives only the front wheels, but can drive the rears whenever required (and determines the drive torque to each rear wheel independently, which is pretty cool to those of us who are mechanically inclined).

Perhaps this is just confusion about what "all wheel drive" means. It literally means only that all four of the wheels can be driven, but is usually expected to mean that they all can be driven even on paved surfaces, because there is center differential or clutch system. Honda's VTM-4 is definitely AWD, of the clutch type.
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Old 11-12-2015, 12:26 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
Final drive ratio is irrelevant except when taken in context with transmission ratios, tire overall diameter, and engine operating speed range... so any conclusion about final drive ratios based on dissimilar vehicles are not applicable.
The Ridgeline's transmission ratios are quite "tall" (little reduction or lots of overdrive; low numbers in spec), so it is not surprising that it needs a "short" (lots of reduction, high number in spec) final drive ratio to get the right effect. For instance, the fifth gear is much taller than even the top gear of the ZF 8-speed used in Ram pickups, so even if the engines and tires were the same between these vehicles, Honda would need to use this shorter final drive ratio of 4.533:1 to get the same effect as an 8-speed Ram truck would with a 3.810:1 ratio.
From the Honda specs:
Quote:
5-Speed Automatic Transmission Gear Ratios:
1st:2.697
2nd:1.606
3rd:1.071
4th:0.766
5th:0.538
Reverse:1.888
Final Drive:4.533
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Old 11-12-2015, 10:38 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossue View Post
Bill, from a previous post I gather you may be considering a different TV. From a safety perspective it appears that the Ridgeline is one of the better "Mid-Size V-6 SUV's" ETI claims can tow any of their products from a safety perspective with it's 122" wheelbase. Given that it still is near the top of it's specs for towing a 4000 lb+ trailer over distance.

What, if any alternative are you thinking of?
I think the Ridgeline is adequate for towing a 19 or 21. The Honda specs claim 5,000 lbs of towing capacity and they're allowing for two 150 lb people in this number, so this is equivalent to 5,300 lbs for the manufacturers who spec the towing weights without people. It also has a 1,500 lb load capacity so it can handle the tongue weight. A 21 weights about 4,000 lbs., add to that a couple of dogs, the extra 100 lbs I weigh over 150, a 200 lb cap, some kayaks, and whatever else we are carrying, and we end up pretty close to the max.

The power is also adequate. It seems to perform well on flat surfaces like an interstate, we didn't have any trouble at all crossing the Rockies on the way home, but on these rolling country road hills we have in eastern Connecticut it feels like it could use a bit more pull. So on the first 10 miles of every trip and the last 10 miles of every trip I find myself wishing for more power.

My Ridgeline is a 2007 and I'm getting close to 100K total miles. The 2007's had 245 ft-lbs of torque at 4500 rpm. I think the later ones got more torque. So the limited torque at a high RPM combined with the gearing (mentioned in Brian's post above) and the absence of a tow/haul setting, doesn't get you to the best set up for towing.

I actually like the size of the Ridgeline, its a great daily driver, fits nicely in parking lots, the rear seats fold up so the dogs can get in, and the quality has been much better than the Fords and Jeeps I had before it. I keep hoping that Honda will come out with a second generation that adds 1000-1500 lbs to the towing capacity, adds a bit more torque, and includes a tow haul mode. From what I see in the Ridgeline forums, I don't think they are going to get the towing capacity that high or include tow haul mode. We'll see what shows up in the production truck.

What alternatives would I consider? I'm been struggling with that since there is nothing that has the full package. The smaller trucks have the same limitations with the V6 power (although with slightly higher tow capacities) and none of them have fold up rear seats so I can get the dogs in, and the full size trucks tend to be great for towing but too big for around town use. If I had to buy today, I'd go for the towing capacity. I'd probably try to get an off-lease full size truck from one of the big-3 or a new Tundra with the 39-gallon gas tank
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Old 11-12-2015, 10:54 AM   #28
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Bill, my Nissan Frontier crew cab has the fold up rear seats, quite a bit more towing capacity, and a full usable truck bed. I would think the Tacoma is similar although not sure.
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Old 11-12-2015, 01:03 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg A View Post
Bill, my Nissan Frontier crew cab has the fold up rear seats, quite a bit more towing capacity, and a full usable truck bed. I would think the Tacoma is similar although not sure.
I haven't been in a Frontier in a while, I'll have to go look. As far as I can tell from the images in the reviews, the seat bottoms in the new Tacoma fold forward (which usually means I can't put the seat back far enough) and don't leave a flat floor. The Colorado seats fold up on the back wall like the Ridgeline, but there is a non-removable storage/support system so the floor isn't big dog friendly.
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Old 11-12-2015, 01:37 PM   #30
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Our 4-door Tacoma (crew cab, not the narrower door Access cab model) works great with our dogs - we put a cover over the seats that still allows access to the seat belts. Our dogs ride with harnesses which clip to the seat belts that provide enough slack to lay down on the rear seat but will still protect us from flying dogs in an accident.

They (3) don't travel without being in their harnesses. Safer for us and them.
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