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I ended up ordering the -1 rims with winter tires package from Tirerack last year when I got my truck. For spring/Summer/early fall I have the stock 18's and Firestones. For winter I got Bridgestone Blizzak DM-V2 245/65R17 on a new set of rims. Both the winter tires and rims that I got were on sale, I didn't really shop so much for brand recognition as I did cost since I was spending nearly $1,200. My only gripe about the Blizzak DM-V2's is that it seems like the tread depth for a snow tire is a bit on the shallow side. However, the compound and tread pattern have been great in my northern New England winter and ice storms so far. If I get 3 or 4 seasons out of the tires I'm happy, then I can shop for some really good winter tires to put on my 17's. If anyone wants pics of the 17" rims on my truck let me know, I just need to transfer them to my computer to post.
 

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"Terrain contacts also are reported to have a relatively high rolling resistance according to consumer reports. I would definitely expect a mileage drop from the OEM Firestones."

Exactly right - I've been running a stock sized TerrainContact for about 10K miles - love everything about the tire including excellent snow handling ability - BUT I suffered about a 2 MPG drop from the stock Firestones. The rolling resistance is definitely higher. I'll give up the MPG as the tire is an awesome performer in all categories so far plus after over 10K miles (and one rotation - rearward cross) they still look brand new.
 

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...
If I get 3 or 4 seasons out of the tires I'm happy, then I can shop for some really good winter tires to put on my 17's. ...
From what I have been reading, the best snow tires available in the U.S. currently, are:

1. Nokian Heckicantpronounceit
2. Michelin X-Ice3
3. Bridgestone Blizzaks

There are better snow tires overseas, but apparently the tire companies don't see a ROI in bringing them to the U.S. (especially since U.S. majority does not use snow tires).

Maybe there will be better snow selections four seasons from now, and/or maybe the all-weather (e.g.-WeatherReady) tires will have sufficiently matured by then.
 

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From what I have been reading, the best snow tires available in the U.S. currently, are:

1. Nokian Heckicantpronounceit
2. Michelin X-Ice3
3. Bridgestone Blizzaks

There are better snow tires overseas, but apparently the tire companies don't see a ROI in bringing them to the U.S. (especially since U.S. majority does not use snow tires).

Maybe there will be better snow selections four seasons from now, and/or maybe the all-weather (e.g.-WeatherReady) tires will have sufficiently matured by then.
It's my understanding that Nokians parent company is Lea & Perrin, you may know them for their famous Wha'shis'here sauce.
Also on a serious side note, there are multiple versions of the Blizzaks, and by the opinion I formed from researching winter tires over the past 8-10 years of my life that I've been putting dedicated snow tires on my vehicle is that some Blizzaks suck compared to other Blizzaks. Notwithstanding the application type, ie passenger, SUV, light truck, etc.
 

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Just replaced the OEM Firestones with:

Continental CrossContact LX20 EcoPlus
Stock Size: 245/60R18


The Firestones were down to 6-7/32nds at 22,280 miles despite every 5,000 mile forward cross rotations and an alignment at 6k miles. That is pretty crappy wear...

I picked up a spike through the sidewall the other day, so the right rear was toast. I wasn't going to replace even 2 wheels with more Firestones, so I went with the highly recommended Conti noted above. Gets great reviews and with winter just getting rolling in Western NY, new tires with a good reputation for both wet and snow traction made it a no brainer.

Also a guy at work runs them on his F150 and loves them (and riding in his truck, they seemed quiet and responsive).

Out the door at Dunn Tire for under $800 with tax, so not unreasonable. So, I'll update as I add some miles. So far, quieter than the Firestones and definitely crisper handling but with additional firmness in the ride.
 

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It's my understanding that Nokians parent company is Lea & Perrin, you may know them for their famous Wha'shis'here sauce.
Also on a serious side note, there are multiple versions of the Blizzaks, and by the opinion I formed from researching winter tires over the past 8-10 years of my life that I've been putting dedicated snow tires on my vehicle is that some Blizzaks suck compared to other Blizzaks. Notwithstanding the application type, ie passenger, SUV, light truck, etc.
The Nokians are excellent winter tires, but the sidewall is extremely thin. In fact, I managed a Firestone in Colorado during the winter tire rush. When we were running far behind in getting the snow tire changeovers completed, I would help the techs in the shop. I was amazed that the bead breaker on the tire machine actually punched through many of the Nokian sidewalls while trying to break the bead from the rim. Due to that fact, I wouldn't recommend them if any off-roading was to be anticipated. If your driving is mostly highway, then they are an excellent choice.
 

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Just my 2c.

I have been using Michelin X-Ice on my SUV for last 6 years, mostly in Canada. Very happy with brake performance on ice!
They are noisy when there is no snow on the road. Still like them for stopping power!
 

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Here's the comparison table I created (based on the format TireRack uses). The green/red highlights some of the advantages/disadvantages of that particular spec. The section width isn't exact since the original values were measured when mounted on different measured rim widths. I increased the widths for our stock 8" wide rims using this "The industry rule of thumb is that for every 1/2" change in rim width, the tire's section width will correspondingly change by approximately 2/10". See here for the explanation: https://www.tirerack.com/tires/tiretech/techpage.jsp?techid=200

Hope you find this helpful. :smile:
 

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I'm in that group. From my calculations, I'll be lucky to get 30k miles from the OEM Firestones. I have mentioned this before.
I'm over 50k on my stock Firestones and they would easily go another 10. I may change them out early if it's a snowy winter.
 

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Here are some pics with so-so lighting. I'll try to take some new ones tomorrow. Note, the one showing tread width is not a fair comparison since the OEM Destinations on the right are not mounted.
Looks great MechE (your post with the Continential Terrain Contact AT's installed) - I was looking at the Wildpeaks and Ridge Grabbers - but seems the Terrain AT has a great look (less suttle that both others) but yet ligher and with a better road performance and more quite. Looks great - adding a 1.5 Truxx lift to front end tonight - should help even more in elimination of rift plus a little more clearance and height.
 

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I replaced my OEM tires last weekend with the LTD Defender in the original size and could not be more happy.

The Defenders give a much smoother ride and are very quiet in comparison to Firestones. I would have kept the originals longer but they were making too much noise.
 

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I don't think I have posted to this thread and I didn't notice my tire of choice on the list. With an unexpected trip back to MN this last March/April, I decided I wanted snow rated tires. So I went with NOKIAN TIRE WR G3 SUV 255 /60 R18 112H XL BSW. I went up one size because I wanted an XL rating and didn't want to deal with any potential rubbing issues of going to a 265. Very satisfied so far with about 20k on the Nokians. The Nokians are relatively light, a low rolling resistance tire, have the mountain snowflake icon, and have a more rounded profile that I think is better for a front biased drive vehicle.

 

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...Looks great - adding a 1.5 Truxx lift to front end tonight - should help even more in elimination of rift plus a little more clearance and height.
As you may know from other forum posts, the 1.5" lift will give you more ground clearance but not more wheel well clearance for larger tires due to the geometry of the wheel wells. Wheel offset comes into play as well.
 

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I don't think I have posted to this thread and I didn't notice my tire of choice on the list. With an unexpected trip back to MN this last March/April, I decided I wanted snow rated tires. So I went with NOKIAN TIRE WR G3 SUV 255 /60 R18 112H XL BSW. I went up one size because I wanted an XL rating and didn't want to deal with any potential rubbing issues of going to a 265. Very satisfied so far with about 20k on the Nokians. The Nokians are relatively light, a low rolling resistance tire, have the mountain snowflake icon, and have a more rounded profile that I think is better for a front biased drive vehicle.

Thanks for posting. Have you detected any change in mpg with the Nokians? Also, does it look like you could still fit snow cables on your 255/60's if a mountain pass required "chains" (which happens during winter here in the Rockies)?
 

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Thanks for posting. Have you detected any change in mpg with the Nokians? Also, does it look like you could still fit snow cables on your 255/60's if a mountain pass required "chains" (which happens during winter here in the Rockies)?
I didn't monitor my MPG close enough to make an accurate call but if anything the MPG is the same or slightly better. I do have the low profile cable chains for the OEM tire size but they are still brand new in the box. The 255 tire size is not listed on the cable chain box label and I don't want to purchase another set just to find out they don't clear. I should post the cable chains for sale but shipping would most likely kill the deal. In the 19 years that I lived in the Siskiyou Mountains whenever the chain up rules were in effect, 4WD/AWD vehicles with the mountain snowflake icon were exempt.
 

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Suspension lifts/leveling kits will not give you ground clearance. They will allow you to use larger tires. It’s the larger diameter tires which give you the additional ground clearance.
While that is the case with many BoF leveling or lift kits, the kits for the Ridgeline actually do increase ground clearance. They are essentially a spacer on the strut.

Additionally, the Ridgeline, with its four-wheel independent suspension, has no differential "pumpkin" hanging down in line with the hubs to bang on things.
 

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It still will not increase ground clearance. Measure the distance from the ground to your lower control arm before and after the install. There will be no change.
 

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It still will not increase ground clearance. Measure the distance from the ground to your lower control arm before and after the install. There will be no change.
That is semantics. I think most folks here will argue that your ground clearance is increased, especially since it is not measured at the lower control arm.

Think about when you really need ground clearance. Maybe for clearing a rock or log lying in the road, or when driving through or around rocks and ruts. Typically you can drive the tire up out of a rut or over a rock where the lower control arm has little impact on GC. The majority of your ground clearance issues will be toward the center of the vehicle. Additionally, probably most would argue that they would rather take a rock impact to a lower control arm than to the oil pan.

I don't even know why I'm arguing this... if you don't understand the concepts, you either don't off-road much or you need to re-visit off-roading 101.
 

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AFAIK, all carmakers measure and report ground clearance at the longitudinal center zone of the vehicle where you are most likely to "high center" the vehicle, damage the undercarriage or strike the oil pan when driving off pavement. Ridgeline leveling/lift kits will, in fact, increase centerline ground clearance. However, low-hanging control arms like those on the RL could become an issue on deeply-rutted roads. But even Jeep Cherokee Trailhawks, Subaru Outbacks and other "high clearance" AWD vehicles have control arms that hang way closer to the ground than their official ground clearance spec would indicate.

IMO, a real-world assessment of ground clearance and off-road capability must also consider approach/departure/breakover angles, control arm clearance, skidplate protection and overall vulnerability of undercarriage components to damage from contact with obstacles or uneven road surfaces, whether rock, sand or mud. Looking at a single ground clearance spec doesn't tell the whole story.

At times, Honda reps have characterized the RL as suitable for "medium-duty" or
"moderate" off-roading, while the marketing folks tend to portray the truck as a serious mudder. Personally, I would call a stock RL a "light-duty" off-road vehicle.
 
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