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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone had any experience driving on a beach with our truck? Would like to do it a bit here where I live.
 

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We've been out on Nausett Beach in Orleans without any problems. The beach is much narrower this year due to last winter's Nor'easters so there is a lot less area to work with. As the year goes on, the tire ruts get deeper and I am a little concerned about ground clearance. In the past we couldn't get to the outer beach with our CR-V in August because we kept bottoming out.
Traction and handling, however is no problem. I haven't gotten stuck at all even in the real soft sand.
Where on the south shore do you go out?
Let us know how you make out.
 

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thumper said:
The beach is covered with sand...filled with salt. If you like your truck, stay off the beach.
I'd be worried about rust due to all of the salt as well. If you do go on the beach, be sure to wash the truck well including underneath to get all the salt off of it.
 

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When you live anywhere near the shore there is always salt in the air. Unless it is very windy and salt spray is a concern the concentration of salt in the air shouldn't be a big problem.
I wouldn't advocate driving through the surf like you see in commercials, but taking your truck out on a deserted beach is one of life's great pleasures which can't be accomplished in most vehicles.
Isn't this type of off-roading part of the reason you bought your Ridgeline?
Just be sure to give her a good bath afterwards and be sure to rinse the undercarriage.
And...watch out for the Piping Plovers.
 

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I think as long as you do not go in the water your vehicle should be ok with a good washing afterwards. I took our Volvo on the beach in NC and it's a lot more expensive than the RL-which I would also drive on the beach with out any hesitation.

I saw some great beach vehicles in NC. An Altima on the hard pack that made out well, a 2-wheel minivan in the soft stuff...stuck. :)
 

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As you may know, I am not a current Ridgeline owner. That will soon change. Here is a little insight on the saltwater however.
I currently have a 1997 Jeep Grand Cherokee that I ride on the beach frequently. Combine that with living three blocks from the Atlantic and the truck has seen some serious salt. Add in the road salt in the NJ winter months and there has probably been enough salt on it over the years to rival Morton! ..........Anyway, I always take the time to rinse everthing down. If it is cold, I drive through a car wash with the "Underside Bath." If it is warmer, I just hose the heck out of it. I would suggest getting a wand attachment for the hose that has an angle. It is really helpful in keeping yourself dry and getting to all the out of the way places. Make sure to spend a little extra time getting the exhast system up to the manifolds.

I have not had any rust problems at all and I don't suspect the Ridgeline will be any different.

One last thought, you may want to avoid the puddles and salty water until you are sure that you do not have the leak issue discussed. I would hate to see any truck with salt under the dash and floor rugs.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks all for your input. I value your advice. The beaches I'm talking about are at the Rhode Island shore.
 

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MarkF said:
Thanks all for your input. I value your advice. The beaches I'm talking about are at the Rhode Island shore.
Which ones? I didn't think there were any around for driving. Of course I'm a transplanted M*******, so what do I know?

(Hmm, it doesn't like the colorful names for people from Mass... oops)
 

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I'll be in Hatteras in the Outer Banks of North Carolina for a week in a few days. I was planning to air down the tires, as I've read on so many off-roading sites, and cruise the beach with my Ridgeline. One critical element of that was turning the VSA off since it will actually cut your power at really bad times when your tires slip in the sand. Then I came across this bombshell in the owners manual on page 206: "If the low tire pressure indicator comes on, the VSA system automatically turns on even if you turn it off with the VSA OFF button" Well, that's real nice of them. It sounds like HAL (a computer from an old Space Odyssey movie for you youngsters out there) is alive and well.

I was just wondering if anyone's looked into a way to make VSA stay off in a situation like this. I can always leave the tires at full inflation and hope for the best with VTM4 lock, but if it gets bad out there, it sure would be nice to have the option.
 

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I'd either lock it or just keep the tires aired up normally.
 

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Suggestion about cleaning the undercarriage:

Park your truck on your driveway, put a lawn sprinkler under it, and turn on the water. Leave for a few hours. DONE.
 

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Re: Running lower tire pressure on sand

You might just need to interrupt the signal from the tire to the TPM brain, and provide a dummy signal that will say "all is okay with tire pressure". You could engage this with a switch. Alternatively, you might be able to hack the signal that says "lets provide VSA" and turn it off in a way that really means it! Of course, these things usually aren't as simple as you first think. I've hacked our Subaru automatic computer controlled center differential so that I could force it to stay locked. Took quite a few hours of R&D as well as some trial and error, some resistors and a switch.

Computer controlled cars just mean we have to be more creative in our mods!
 

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Wow! That's way beyond my capabilities, but I do appreciate the feedback. We're heading to the Outer Banks next week, so I'll try it with normal air pressure, VSA off and VTM locked. Only good up to 18 mph, but I've read other threads where people have have good luck this way. We'll keep "Tow Truck Larry's" phone number handy along with a lot of cash, and give it a try. I'll write up how we did in a couple of weeks.
Now if we could just make Hurricane Dennis spin down in the Gulf, we'd be all set!
 

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Another poster mentions that he pulled the 20 Amp VSA fuse. It turned on several lights on the dash, but he felt it worked pretty well. It seems the key would be disabling only the TPMS - does anyone know of a way to do it that wouldn't alert the VSA gestappo? Locking the VTM4 isn't an option for me because I drive several miles at a time and don't feel like doing it in 1st gear.

I'm planning on taking mine out to Race Point on Cape Cod in September to go for blues. I'm trying to figure out a way of attaching my rod rack to the front without raising an issue about mods when I return it at lease end. Anyone done this??

I'm a long-time veteran of driving on sand on the Cape and Nantucket, but this will be the frst trip for the RL. Any words of advice??
 

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Not sure if I'm misunderstanding things here. I just bought my RL, the dealer had it done up with aftermarket wheels and tires when I took my test drive. These wheels were not set up for the TPMS, therefore the TPMS light was constantly on. The VSA did not seem to be engaged during that time at all, and no other lights on the dash.

I had them put the stock wheels back on before my purchase as I had no use for low profiles, but either you were misinformed of the system design, or I'm reading something wrong.
 

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Boreal said:
I'm planning on taking mine out to Race Point on Cape Cod in September to go for blues. I'm trying to figure out a way of attaching my rod rack to the front without raising an issue about mods when I return it at lease end. Anyone done this??

I'm a long-time veteran of driving on sand on the Cape and Nantucket, but this will be the frst trip for the RL. Any words of advice??
I'll be out near Race Point in August. Hadn't intended on driving out as I don't have a full size spare to get me the permit... :cool:
Boreal, you live on the Cape?
 

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TacomaDCLB said:
Suggestion about cleaning the undercarriage:

Park your truck on your driveway, put a lawn sprinkler under it, and turn on the water. Leave for a few hours. DONE.
The rainbow type that is.......
 

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One time on the beach to take this picture. Probably won't be a regular on the beach because of the salt.....too much work to clean afterwards.

I live about 2 blocks from the Atlantic ocean.
 

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Did in at Hatteras last winter. Lowered the tire pressure, switched off VSA, and a freking BLAST! Blew away my buddys jeep, and my other buds Element. My sunroof actually stopped working, as it was clogged with sand. A good cleaning is mandatory. Rookie truck guy here, so I was thrilled ....
 
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