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Here is mystory of automotive passion and poor financial decisions (which I don't regret!) that led me to going from a 2018 Ridgeline to a 2006...

I'll start by saying I love cars. I always have. I was subscribed to Car and Driver at 10 years old and the passion never faded. My first car was a used 2004 Honda Accord Coupe EX-L V-6, and I loved it. My favorite car has always been the Mustang, so in 2013 I bought a 2011 Mustang.

A little over a year ago I was sitting pretty with a 2004 Ford F-150 Lariat and said 2011 Ford Mustang GT Premium Track Pack. I've always preferred cars, but enjoyed having a truck for their utility, as I'm a DIY guy. That said, the Mustang was my weekend and occasional road trip car, and the F-150 was the daily driver and occasional road trip vehicle. I decided it was time for an upgrade. I tossed around the idea of replacing the Mustang, but ultimately decided I wanted to replace my daily driver with something more modern. Being a "car guy" who only has a truck for actual utility as opposed to image and ego, I landed on the Ridgeline for its least truck-like driving characteristics. In June of 2018 I purchased a 2018 Ridgeline RTL-E, and I absolutely loved it! The comfortable ride and ingenious features made it a dreamy daily driver, road tripper, and do-it-all vehicle. All the modern amenities had me wishing for the same from my weekend car, the Mustang. The idea circled my head of replacing it too, but there was no way I could buy another new vehicle, right??

Fast forward to January of this year. I had to take the truck in for the hood flutter TSB. The evening before I took it, I found a nail in the sidewall of a tire. Time for a new tire! I normally only use dealers for warranty work, but since I was already planning to bring it, and the price was competitive, I asked them to replace the tire. They didn't have a tire in stock, so they'd keep the truck overnight and give me a loaner car. Up pulls a 2018 Accord Sport 1.5T. I've been eyeing the 10th gen Accord ever since it was released, and I knew this would be trouble. My 8 minute drive home took 2 hours, because I didn't want to stop driving it. I fell in love with the car. The next day when I returned to pick up the Ridgeline, I test drove a Touring 2.0T and I was smitten. Ten days later I drove the Mustang to Dallas (where the dealers are have MUCH better prices), and drove back with a 2018 Accord Touring 2.0T. So at this point I had two 2018 Hondas (in Lunar Silver) in the garage, with a large loan on the Ridgeline and a small one on the Accord.

For the next few months, I was torn. I couldn't get enough of driving the Accord. I'm a car guy, after all! But I loved all the features and capability of the Ridgeline. My daily driving slowly transitioned from the truck to the car, and so did the road tripping. It got to the point that, unless I needed to do something "trucky," I would always prefer to drive the Accord. Yet I was paying $500/60 months for the truck versus $300/36 months for the car, plus insurance for each. I couldn't justify paying that much for the Ridgeline when I'd almost always rather drive the Accord anyway. So, in April I made the difficult decision to sell the Ridgeline, and take the depreciation hit, in order to save the remaining 4+ years of payments and insurance. I would sell the Ridgeline and try out the single vehicle lifestyle for a while, and if I missed having a truck, I'd look for an old, cheap one. The 2018 Ridgeline with 10,000 miles was sold 18 hours after I posted it on Autotrader.

In the two months that I didn't have a truck, I had to, on three occasions, beg and plead to borrow friends' trucks. There were a couple projects around the house that I wanted to do, but couldn't because I didn't have a truck. A piece of furniture I couldn't fit. I missed the do-it-all capability of a truck. I really missed the Ridgeline. So, I hit the listings. I always figured I'd get an old F-150, but then it hit me. If I loved so much about my Ridgeline, why not get an old one? The G1 has almost everything I loved: the car-like driving dynamics, the spacious cab (for a midsize), the flip-up back seat with flat floor, the wide bed (for a midsize), the in-bed trunk, the dependability, the unique look, etc. Three days after I started looking, the perfect truck popped up 300 miles away. A 2006 RTL S/R Nav with 175,000 miles. This was more mileage than I wanted, but it was the original owner, an 83 year old man who bought the truck when he retired and piled up the miles driving his dog to his lake house 300 miles away. He retired from owning a small chain of auto service shops. He performed all maintenance to the tee according to the Maintenance Minder. The truck looks and drives great (except for a grimy interior), and everything is in working order except for an apparent faulty TPMS sensor he never bothered to fix. I got the truck for $6,700 cash, and I am smitten all over again. Sure, it's not as modern and sleek as the G2, but it has so much of what I loved from the second gen, plus a certain rugged appeal absent from the G2. I am so excited to be back in a Ridgeline for all of my "trucky" needs, and best of all, it's already paid off! I think I've reached my ideal automotive setup: fancy new car and cheap, old utility truck, specifically Ridgeline.

Even though I lost a meaningful sum in taxes and depreciation from selling the G2, I don't regret buying it. Without it, I wouldn't have discovered the Accord or the G1 Ridgeline. The cost of doing business, I suppose.

As far as my new G1, it appears to be in great mechanical shape. The suspension feels tight and the engine feels and sounds good. My first order of business is to get the interior fully and professionally detailed to get rid of the dog hair and smell, and the grime. Beyond that, I plan to get a four wheel alignment, balance the wheels (there's a very slight pull and shimmy at highway speeds), and fix the faulty TPMS sensor. When they align it, I'll ensure they give the suspension and steering a full inspection. I suppose I'll begin replacing all the fluids just to be on the safe side. At some point in the intermediate future I'll replace the rotors and pads. This won't be my daily driver or road tripper, for the most part, so the miles will start piling on a lot slower.

Any advice on systems/components I should check or replace for a high-mileage G1 would be greatly appreciated! Glad to be back in the club!
 

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2006 Ridgeline RTS in Steel Blue
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Wow, Glad Your Back. In some ways it sounds like "where my G1" has migrated to, parked, maintained and doing truck things. I enjoy driving our '17 Accord and '16 CR-Z but cannot see myself without owning a truck.

Sounds like it was well maintained, if it was me, I might consider "baselining" all the fluids and use that as an "orientation" to the vehicle. This has been discussed several times on the forum in the G1 section, but DnF of ATF, VTM, Transfer Case, Radiator(coolant), Brake Fluid (not on MM but should be 3yrs) and Power Steering Fluid. If you have solid records and know when these were done, my serious guess is PS has never been done, it is not on any schedule or maintenance minder. While in there, do the two o-rings near the pump, since they shrink and allow air into the system.

Moderator Note: Thread Moved
 

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Thanks for sharing your automotive journey, sounds like your current vehicles are perfectly matched to your needs. Hope you get any happy miles out of the Ridgeline and Accord!
 

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Just wondering.... does the 2.0T Accord have a tow rating of any sort?

My '02 Accord coupe is rated to tow 1000lbs. Accordingly;), i have a Hidden Hitch installed on it and occasionally tow a small utility trailer.
 

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Thank you for sharing your story, @Cwatt79. No one ever has to apologize for saving some $$. Glad the G1 is working out great for you.
 

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@Cwatt79, we must be related. :)

A couple of years ago, I had a 2017 Ridgeline RTL-E and a 2017 Civic Si sedan. I drove the Civic during the week and the Ridgeline on the weekends. After the Civic got vandalized and unsatisfactorily repaired, I traded it for a 2018 Accord Sport 2.0T 10AT that I drove almost exclusively. To save money on insurance and reclaim garage space, I decided to trade both the Ridgeline and Accord for a 2019 RDX which turned out to be a big disappointment and reminded me of why I don't need to be without a pickup. I traded it for a 2019 Ridgeline RTL-E in December then filled the empty garage space with two scooters and a motorcycle (I only planned to buy one motorcycle, but that's another story). I don't yet have a vision of what my next vehicle might be.

Ideally, I'd have an economical sedan or hatchback for daily driving and an older truck for those rare occasions I need an open bed. I seemed most happy with the Ridgeline/Civic Si combination as that gave me both utility and something sporty and economical to drive. I've considered picking up another Civic Si, but I really need to build a shop first. I don't know why I keep putting that off - probably because I know I'll just buy stuff to fill it up and I already have enough to keep me busy.

The important things I'd check on the 2006 Ridgeline are:
  • Spark plugs (condition and torque)
  • Replace the radiator as a proactive measure in an attempt to avoid the SMOD
  • Replace the timing belt/tensioner/water pump if it hasn't been done
  • Replace all fluids no matter what the previous owner and/or records might say
 

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I use my 14 Accord V6 for highway trips when the weather is good. It's smooth, fast, brakes very well and gets zero attention from cops. I love to block off those that try to pass me on the right when I'm doing 75 trying to set up a pass.. (yeah, I'm an AH) I use the RL for everyting else in town as I take the dog with me everywhere. The RL is great for the foul weather we have for 5 months a year and I just park the Accord after Thanksgiving. Ultimately, I'd like to find an SUV that performs like the Accord that could be used year round but for now I'll enjoy the best of both worlds. I used minivans for many years to do home improvement projects and they worked very well but I like having an AWD better.
 

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Nice job on the truck. I am sure it will treat you well.
 

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@Cwatt79
What a great story. It is inspiring and thought provoking.
It has definitely given me some insight into my families future automotive needs.
I've only had my 08 G1 for less than a year. That replaced a 94 Ranger.The 2nd vehicle is due for a replacement soon, so a car can be in the picture. I'm pretty sure I'll replace the G1 before it hits 24 years old. The question then becomes when and wiill it be with another used G1, G2 or possibly a G3? Time will tell.
 

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I'm chuckling...sounds like something I'd do, let rational thinking get in the way of love. I loved my G1 and hope my G2 matches up well - or I"m back to a G1, like you. I bought the G2 cuz the dealer was discounting the 2019 RTL $9K and the 0.9% interest was also attractive. My G1 is gone to a young man who I'm sure will love it as much as I did - it was fun to sell it to him. But...I miss my old buddy G1. The reason I miss it, I think is that it actually made me feel young - black, hood deflector, sporty wheels, roof rack, mud flaps - all the bling that an old guy like me shouldn't have...but the chicks liked it too. Guess I will need to butch up the G2 now. Happy Travels.
 
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