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'17 RTL-T
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Yep. I have a bluetooth LE ODB2 scanner and I can read transmission temperature with that via blue tooth and my iPhone.
 

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2017 Ridgeline AWD RTL-T
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We took our Rockwood Roo 233S on our first decent trip this past weekend. About 4 hours from Maryland to the Poconos in Pennsylvania. Not mountainous but hilly. A mix of interstate (65-70 mph speed limits), state highways (55 mph speed limits), and local roads. The Ridgeline did a decent job with the tow. I think it is at the limit, but I'm comfortable with how it went. Kept speeds below 65 (generally 63-65 on interstates). RPM held mostly around 3800 heading up grads and less on the flats. Would occasionally downshift on steeper/longer grades to 4000+ RPM. I was curious how that would play out with the new 9-speed vs my 6-speed transmission. Mileage was 11-12 mpg depending on how heavy my foot was. (that is also the same MPG our F-150 with the 5.4L motor got when towing).

Wind warnings on the way there so that is always "fun" towing a big box, but never felt crazy. Heavy rain most of the way back, so we certainly sampled what mother nature could throw at the trip.

Setup:
2017 RTL-E (AWD)
stock Firestone Destination LE2 tires
Reese weight distribution/sway control
Prodigy 3 brake controller
CIPA 11950 Universal Clip-On Towing Mirror Black & Silver, 15.75 Inch. This was my first time using these mirrors and they did an admirable job. Definitely aided and worth the very few dollars! https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00029WRKA/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1
propane tanks probably about 1/2 full
24 gallons of water in the fresh water tank

If you look at past posts, we have towed a prior 25' camper that was a bit lighter, 6" narrower, and a bit lower since it didn't have a slideout. The truck often has something of various sizes and weights behind it. Would a Tundra/RAM/F150/Titan work a little less hard, sure, I'm not debating that, but just sharing my experience. Heck, on the way home yesterday, I saw a guy towing a larger camper than ours behind a Subaru Ascent!

View attachment 411332
So I'm curious, did you tow in D4 like the manual recommends?
 

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I thought the manual said “tow in D…..use D4 if shifting occurs frequently”. The manual also says 55 mph max with the type of trailer shown in the attachment.
 
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2017 Ridgeline AWD RTL-T
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I thought the manual said “tow in D…..use D4 if shifting occurs frequently”. The manual also says 55 mph max with the type of trailer shown in the attachment.
I'll have to look at the manual again. But yes, that's the idea with D4, reduce the gear hunting thus reducing heat build up on the transmission.
 

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Yep, that's the idea behind D4, but if the tranny is not constantly hunting (gears), use D. In other words, start in D and let the tranny/driving conditions tell you if D4 is needed at certain points of a trip.
 

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I looked up the OP trailer and got a Unladen weight of 5063.....payload 1645.

That makes me feel better about my needs which are 4800-5500 depending on trailer....
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Replying to the question about D4, I left it in D unless it starts hunting. I now have a 2021 Ridgeline, so its a different ballgame.
 

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In D, does the 9 speed “hunt more” since it has more to “hunt from”?
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
It seems to hunt a bit less (or at least I don't notice it). I put it in Sequential mode when towing and holds gears longer. In hilly areas or when I notice it hunting, I may use the paddles to drop a gear and hold it.
 

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So……when in “sequential“, the pooter may override a driver gear selection? Interesting.
 

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2020 Ridgeline RTL-E Pacific Pewter
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So……when in “sequential“, the pooter may override a driver gear selection? Interesting.
actually after some recent discussion about using S mode (and also that it doesn't use auto-stop in S), I started using this the past few times I was pulling the trailer. Most recently came back from Hot Springs, AR / Lake Ouachita camping for a week, which is quite hillly area (although low altitude), and S mode did pretty well. I liked how it held gears longer, but I do think it probably has a (slightly) lower fuel economy (maybe?) due to this, but that's not a huge concern.
 

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I noticed in the manual it says if the fluid exceeds a temp limit, it will up-shift itself even when in sequential mode. Seems like the pooter has final say-so regardless of D or S and excessive temp will cause a up-shift vs a down-shift. Pretty smart.
 

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2017 Ridgeline AWD RTL-T
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actually after some recent discussion about using S mode (and also that it doesn't use auto-stop in S), I started using this the past few times I was pulling the trailer. Most recently came back from Hot Springs, AR / Lake Ouachita camping for a week, which is quite hillly area (although low altitude), and S mode did pretty well. I liked how it held gears longer, but I do think it probably has a (slightly) lower fuel economy (maybe?) due to this, but that's not a huge concern.
Interesting. So can you put that newer 9-speed transmission in D4? Or that S mode your only other choice besides D?
 

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2020 Ridgeline RTL-E Pacific Pewter
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Interesting. So can you put that newer 9-speed transmission in D4? Or that S mode your only other choice besides D?
There is no "D4" like the 6AT (or the D3 like 5AT in 1st Gen RL's). The ZF-9 has the D & S modes, along with paddle shifters for (requesting) up/down shifting. (There is a bit more to all of this in D/S modes and shifting which are covered in my 2020 owners manual starting at page 388.)
I also just noticed it talking about only going from 1-8, with 8 only being used at "high speeds" (whatever that is) in S mode.
A quirk (or probably a "feature") of the the paddle shifters, is that in D mode, it's usually only temporary, while for me at least using paddle shifter in S mode is somewhat more "sticky" selection: I either have to start changing gears myself, or press D/S again to cycle to D then back to S mode to get auto shifting back.
Ok, just RTFM and see that I only need to hold the + (upshift) paddle to cancel the manual gear selection and return to auto mode ;)

Font Number Screenshot Document
 

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2020 Ridgeline RTL-E Pacific Pewter
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actually now that I read it carefully again, I'm seeing that "S Mode" itself is not necessarily "sequential" mode, or even "sport" mode, but just called literally "S Position" (lols). Reading through that text, I can see that it's only in "sequential mode" when you use the paddle shifters (temporarily when in D, permanently in S, until cancelled)

Font Parallel Gadget Data transfer cable Cable
 

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I thought in D, the 9 speed started in 2nd, no? From the post above it appears when in S, 9th gear is locked out, no?
 

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I thought in D, the 9 speed started in 2nd, no? From the post above it appears when in S, 9th gear is locked out, no?
Yes, my observation (looking at my CarScanner app) is that D normally starts in 2nd (but can or will shift in to 1 if needed). Felt like S started out in 1st, but will have to verify that with the app next time.
 

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Could you also verify 9th gear? Normal driving? Thanks.
 

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Terrain, wind, driving conditions, down-shift to 8th? Thanks.

My presumption is, under normal driving conditions (whatever that is, LOL), the 9 speed would hunt more often for 8th when in D vs when in S and 9th is driver selected.🤷‍♂️
 
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