There is nothing I find more thrilling than being able to hit the road at the beginning of a long weekend in my Honda Ridgeline when I am headed for camping sites with my family.
If you also want to make this dream a reality, you need to ensure that you have the right truck to tow your camper to your camping destination.
While many pickup trucks can easily pull some weight behind them, it is important to know whether the Honda Ridgeline model you plan to acquire is up to this noble task.
Here is what I found out after researching Honda Ridgeline models and their towing capabilities. Read on!
Can a Honda Ridgeline Tow a Camper?
Yes, a Honda Ridgeline can safely tow a camper, provided the weight doesn’t surpass its towing capability. However, this pickup is mid-sized, so it doesn’t have the towing capacity or payload of half-ton or larger trucks. Although the Honda Ridgeline is not as powerful as most pickups found on the market, it can easily tow a small camper.
That’s because engineering developments have resulted in lightweight trailers.
What’s the Towing Capacity of a Honda Ridgeline?
The Honda Ridgeline’s towing power varies based on the trim level. The general capacity is pretty low from one trim level to another.
Since the Honda Ridgeline is a medium-sized truck, it doesn’t have the towing power of a Nissan Titan or an F-150.
The Ridgeline pickup is ideal for pulling a light camping trailer or hauling a small trailer with ATVs.
Before attaching anything to your trailer hitch, it’s crucial to know the towing power limit for the truck you are driving.
Below is a breakdown of the towing capabilities based on trim level.
- Sport – 3,500 lbs
- Sport AWD – 5,000 lbs
- RTL – 3,500 lbs
- RTL AWD – 5,000 lbs
- RTL-E AWD – 5,000 lbs
- Black Edition – 5,000 lbs
When it comes to pickup trucks, payload and towing capabilities are better than racing capabilities.
The new 2021 Ridgeline has a standard towing power of 5,000 pounds which is not an impressive figure. This lack of good towing power also means that the pickup is not ideal for towing heavy caravans.
Your dealer will make that very clear to you when you visit the showroom.
Moreover, the 2021 Ridgeline comes with a 5.4-inch deck which offers a 1580-pound payload capacity.
With a towing power of 5,000 pounds, the pickup truck performs pretty well behind Chevrolets and GMCs in its class.
Despite having the smallest engine, the Ford Ranger offers the best towing power, thanks to its robust SelectsShift transmission and excellent turbocharger technology.
What If you Exceed the Towing Capacity?
You should always consult your user manual to ensure that you don’t exceed the maximum hauling capacity indicated by the manufacturer.
Towing heavier weights than your Honda Ridgeline trailer was designed for can result in serious damage to your pickup truck.
It will also create some unsafe driving conditions both for you and those sharing the road with you.
Towing excessive weights can easily damage the tires, suspension, axles, and the frame of your Honda Ridgeline.
It will also place unnecessary strain on the truck’s transmission and engine, significantly decreasing its lifespan.
Apart from the damage, excessive weights can cause your truck and trailer to sway, resulting in jack-knifing.
The swaying can also cause the camper to detach completely.
Check the towing power of your Ridgeline and be sure of how much your loaded camper weighs before attaching it to the hitch.
Is the Honda Ridgeline Good for Towing?
Honda Ridgeline pickups are sturdy trucks designed for hauling lighter weights behind them and carrying small payloads.
They are ideal for pulling light travel trailers. Many people who own Ridgelines use them to cart their dirt bikes or four-wheelers around on a lightweight trailer.
If you are considering pulling another car behind the pickup truck, then the Honda Ridgeline will not be an option.
Since the towing power is 5,000 pounds, the Honda Ridgeline can’t pull heavy loads. To tow heavy items, you might want to explore three-quarter-ton or half-ton pickup trucks.
These trucks are designed to withstand a larger towing capacity.
What Campers Can a Honda Ridgeline Tow?
You can tow several types of campers with the Honda Ridgeline.
Even with a towing power of 3,500 pounds, you can tow the various options discussed below. And if you prefer the all-wheel-drive version, you can tow larger camper trailers.
One type of travel trailer that you can tow with the Ridgeline is the pop-up trailer.
These trailers are pretty light because of their minimalist interior and canvas siding.
You can easily tow these trailers using your Honda Ridgeline, but pop-up trailers might not be the best option since you can tow more weight.
The other option is teardrop trailers. These camper trailers have a maximum weight of 4,000 pounds which means they are small and extremely lightweight.
This light design means you can tow a teardrop trailer using the all-wheel-drive Ridgeline.
Given the towing capabilities of the Honda Ridgeline, you can get a good one with all the necessary amenities.
The last option is small to mid-size camper trailers, including R-pod trailers. Most of these trailers weigh less than 3,500 pounds due to the light material used to build them.
If you prefer the all-wheel-drive Ridgeline, you will have some trailer options. Since the model can take on a maximum of 5,000 pounds, there’s a wind range of camper trailers you can easily tow.
The Honda Ridgeline can tow 20-feet lightweight trailers or longer. That means that you’ll easily find a camper trailer with every amenity, including a dinette, full kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom.
Can a Honda Ridgeline Carry A Truck Camper?
The Honda Ridgeline can only carry small truck campers. Its payload capacity ranges between 1509 and 1583 lbs.
Generally, many truck campers weigh between 1,000 and 5,000 pounds.
Therefore, with a limited number of passengers, your Ridgeline can pull the smallest camper trailer.
Although the Honda Ridgeline cannot carry a lot of weight, there are smaller camper trailers on the market that can work with your truck.
The amount of weight that your truck’s bed can handle depends significantly on the model and year of your Ridgeline.
The following is a list of different Honda Ridgeline models and their maximum payloads.
- 2021 – 1509 and 1583 Lbs
- 2020 – 1452 and 1580 Lbs
- 2019 – 1431 and 590 Lbs
- 2018 – 1451 and 1586 Lbs
- 2016 & 2017 – 1451 and 1588 Lbs
- 2014 & 2015 – 1486 and 1546 Lbs
- 2013 – 1475 and 1559 Lbs
- 2011 & 2012 – 1486 and 1546 Lbs
As you can see, the Ridgeline’s payload capacity has remained consistent, but the truck’s baseline increases in the most current year.
Although each model has slightly different capacities, it has remained within the same range in the last decade.
The camper size your truck can tow mainly depends on the amount of weight you are carrying.
For instance, if you’re carrying five individuals and each of them weighs approximately 180 pounds, you will be limited to what your Ridgeline can carry.
With around 900lbs in passenger weight, you’ll have 650 pounds left to carry your truck camper.
If you plan to have a camping trip with your truck camper, it’s crucial that you calculate the amount of weight going to the truck.
That also includes other things like the weight of your other cargo.
Can a Honda Ridgeline Tow A Fifth-Wheel?
The Honda Ridgeline can safely tow a small or mid-sized fifth-wheel trailer, although its towing power is limited.
All-wheel-drive models of Honda Ridgeline have an integrated hitch that has a 7-pin connector, approximately 262-pound torque, and the capacity to pull a maximum of 2260 kilograms or 5,000 lbs.
It is very important to know the type of truck to go for when purchasing a fifth wheel.
You’ll need a ¾-ton pickup at least to pull the fifth wheel. However, a one-ton truck with an 8-foot bed is ideal since it can handle more weight.
I found out that the bigger the pickup, the better.
Fifth-wheel camper trailers have a gooseneck hitch that’s used to hook them onto the bed of heavy-duty trucks when being towed.
When pulling fifth wheels, not just any pickup will do. It would be best if you had a truck with towing power that exceeds the fifth wheel’s weight.
Remember that you cannot use step-side pickup trucks, pickup trucks, and short bed pickups with bed liners to pull a fifth wheel.
The roomy interior, smaller size, improved gas mileage, and towing capabilities of the Honda Ridgeline make it an incredibly versatile truck.
If you are looking for a vehicle that does a little bit of everything, this pickup is the best choice.
Therefore, if you don’t mind pulling a smaller camper, you will be quite satisfied with the Ridgeline truck.