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How To Pass Your Cdl Test The First Time

Study- A Key Element

Study! Study! Study! I'm sure we've all heard that our whole lives when we were going to school. Things haven't changed much when it comes to passing your CDL test. To begin, you have to pass three written tests to obtain your Class A CDL Permit. The tests are General Knowledge, Combination Knowledge, and Air Brake Knowledge. To pass these tests, study the state issued CDL Study Guide and go with your first inclination on the written test. Usually your first thought is correct. In this article we will mainly focus on the second part of your CDL test. These three tests are Pre-Trip Inspection, Skills Test, and Road Test. The second set of tests prove to be more difficult than the written tests. It is a must to study your CDL Study Guide for these tests. Below you will find tips that will help you pass each section of the test.

Pre-Trip Inspection

The pre-trip inspection is the first part of your CDL test. In this test you will be required to show the examiner that you can inspect your vehicle to make sure that is safe to operate. As mentioned before, you must study the state issued CDL Study Guide which will show you which parts to inspect and what to look for. Also available are instructional DVD programs that show the pre-trip inspection being done. These are very helpful and informative. Please notice the suggestions below that will help make the pre-trip inspection easier to remember and pass:

1. If anything has air or fluid in it, make sure to say that it is not leaking. (Ex. air hoses, fuel lines, tires, shock absorber, etc.)

2. If you notice anything that has bolts, say that there are no bolts missing or loose. Also mention that the bolts have no rust or metal shavings that could indicate looseness.

3. Any part that is attached to the truck should be "securely mounted".

4. DO NOT say: "It looks good". Several examiners have mentioned that they do not like the phrase "looks good".

5. Make sure that all parts are "working properly". This could include wiper blades, lights, etc.

6. Take your time on the test.

7. What you see you should talk about. It is better to talk too much than too little. If you talk about everything you see the odds of you missing parts are less than if you did not say anything.

Skills Test

The skills test are a series of tests that will be given to show that you can control your vehicle. The tests that you may possibly have in this section are: straight back, offset back, alley dock, parallel park, and possibly serpentine back. There should be a diagram of each maneuver in the back of your CDL Study Guide. The following are suggestions on how you can make it easier to pass the skills section of the test.

1. Practice! If you have the vehicle that you will be taking the test with, practice as much as you can so you will be prepared for the test. Practice the maneuvers listed above and in your study guide so that you will be confident for the test. Even if you do not have the vehicle you will take the test with practice with anything that has a trailer. Remember, some practice is better than none at all.

2. Rely on your mirrors. Most examiners do not like to see someone look out the back window if your vehicle has them. Use your mirrors when you first start driving that way you can become comfortable with them.

3. Put your seat belt on each time you enter the vehicle. The examiner may take off points if they notice that you do not wear it, or worse, they may fail you for not wearing it.

4. If you have any questions feel free to ask the examiner to clarify.

5. Go slow during the skills test. By going slow you can correct your vehicle in time so that you will not hit a cone or boundary.

Road Test

The Road Test can be either easy or difficult depending on where you take the test at. In either case, whether you live in the city or in the country, make sure you take your time and do things the safe way. Follow the listed suggestions below to ensure that you do well on your Road Test.

1. Read all traffic signs to yourself in case the examiner asks you what the sign said. Most important, remember to intently look for bridge height clearance signs as well as weight limit signs.

2. Always wear your seatbelt. If you do not, it could possibly cause you to automatically fail the test.

3. Keep both hands on the wheel at all times. Not having both hands on the wheel could possibly lead to loss of control of the vehicle.

4. Be conscious to using your mirrors throughout the drive.

5. Make sure to signal early before you make the turn or merge.

6. Drive as smoothly as possible. Leave plenty of room between you and the car in front of you. Do not rush up to stop lights or signs.

7. Keep up with traffic but never break the speed limit.

8. Make complete stops.

9. Remember that you are going for a drive to show the examiner that you can be safe while driving on public roads. Be as safe as you possibly can and more than likely you will pass your test.