I have filled out and returned many Consumer Reports annual surveys. I had a problem with a dishwasher once and got mad at the company that made it (shall remain nameless) so when the survey asked me if I bought a new dishwasher in the last year I answered YES for many years. I gave the brand name I was mad at and filled in the little circles saying I've had nothing but problems with it. It was my way of getting even with that company and my results were included in their reliability ratings... but of course I had provided inaccurate data.
I'm not going to get into the appropriateness of this, as it is an element of human nature and somewhat immaterial; except to say that I suspect most people fill out the surveys fairly honestly, realizing that they are beneficiaries of good data if others do the same with respect to products they are considering buying. However, I would think that the tendecy to overstate problems on the part of some people completing the survey would exist equally for all products and, again, CR compares against average negative reports for all cars in that given year in a given category. So it would seem to likely even out.
To beat a dead horse: Nobody seems to have had a concern about the very positive reliability reviews of the Ridgeline garnered from owner surveys for many years. In fact, the Ridgeline is still, even with this one area of reliability problem that has come up, rated best in its class (compact pickup trucks). CR rates it a 79 (out of 100) based on, "results from more than 50 tests and evaluations" (same as for all cars they test).
In the area of reliability, which appears to be totally based on user reviews, the Ridgeline for 2012 has Much Better than Average ratings in every category except this one. However, since 2006, the Ridgeline has NEVER had a reliability rating from owners in any category that was either Worse than Average or Much Worse than Average, except for 2012 in this one area of concern.
It's hard for me to imagine that people with a car like the Ridgeline, that is so well put together, would hammer it over a fuel cap warning issue so badly that it comes up Much Worse than Average. That was my reason for the post. To try to find out why.
So far, one owner (Onital) reported a major problem he had that could be the issue, if it has occured repeatedly. That seems possible given the statistical chances that a 2012 owner who had the problem was reading this thread and responded. Maybe that is it and they had some bad fuel injectors that went out in a bunch of Ridgelines. In any case, hopefully whatever the problem was has been addressed.