Drivers Test

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by CubaTBird, Jul 20, 2006.

  1. CubaTBird macrumors 68020

    Apr 18, 2004
    So I am going to be taking my drivers test pretty soon and wanted to know what is was like. How long does it usually take? Half hour, hour, 45 min? Does the person who is administering the test make you do random things like say "hey, now allow me to mess with your head... lets go get some gas at a gas station even though your not even half empty."?
  2. e²Studios macrumors 68020


    Apr 12, 2005
    It depends where you are. Be sure to come to COMPLETE stops (something us californians arent used to doing) at stop signs, obey the speed limit, dont follow too close.

    They may have you do a 3 point turn, i had to. Usually they are failry short, especially in california given their load, expect it to be no more than 20-30 mintues, but i could be wrong.

    Good Luck :)

  3. Bobdude161 macrumors 65816


    Mar 12, 2006
    N'Albany, Indiana
    also make sure when doing those complete stops you glance at your rear view mirror to see if anyone is not slowing down behind you. I got counted off for not doin that.

    I remember when I did my test the guy told me to do a turnabout and I was like WTF is a turnabout? Obviously he meant 3 point turn. So I failed and did the test again, but weird thing is that's all I did was the 3 point turn and nothing else. no parrallel parking at all. :D I had the guy twice so he musta thought i did the other stuff.
  4. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Got nailed with that one myself.

    Stopped at a red light, the SUV behind me didn't -- but I was alert enough to release the brake and start going forward again to reduce the crunch.
  5. mlw1235 macrumors 6502

    Jul 16, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    #5 Wisconsin it takes about 15 miuntes.

    I got a few points off because I completely messed up my Y-Turn (3 point turn...I guess) but yeah.

    Just go the speed limit, make complete stops, it will be over before you know it.
  6. Felldownthewell macrumors 65816


    Feb 10, 2006
    Drive tests here (I take mine in a have to make the appointment wayyyy in advance) are odd...they love to throw left turns (IE across busy streets) at you, and instead of making you parallel park you have to back up two car lengths along the curb all the while keeping your wheels 6in-1ft off the curb. (All according to my drivers ed insturctor)

    The best advice I have gotten to drive around the area where the DMV is so that you have a good idea of what to expect.
  7. mlw1235 macrumors 6502

    Jul 16, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    I second that.

    My driver's ed instructors would only drive us around that area for the first few lessons because they want us to get used to that area.
  8. OutThere macrumors 603


    Dec 19, 2002
    Definitely tour the DMV's neighborhood.

    In CT we have to be able to back in to side-by-side parking spots.

    I got points off (but passed anyway) for popping the clutch and burning rubber coming out of a stop sign. :D

    There was sand under my tires, I swear. ;)
  9. todd2000 macrumors 68000

    Nov 14, 2005
    Danville, VA
    When I took my test in NJ the DMV had a course, so I didn't do it on the road. It probably took about 15 minutes. I did a K-Turn, I messed up parallel parking, but he let me try it again, and I got it right the second time. The worst part was I took the entire test without my seat-belt on, which he either didn't notice or just ignored. :)
  10. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    I got nicked for changing lanes without signaling...which was odd since I never drove on a road with more than one lane in my direction during the test. I didn't complain though, as I still passed easily.

    Gosh that was a long time ago...
  11. krimson macrumors 65816


    Oct 29, 2003
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    be OBVIOUS when checking mirrors. Dont just move your eyes, move your entire head.

    and dont forget to put your car out of reverse when you're doing your 3pt turn, like i did. Hit the curb on the 3pt turn and you're done.
  12. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    People who have taken driving tests recently here in California tell me that the instructors never "trick" you, that they never ask you to do anything illegal or ill-advised, and that there is no use in being chatty or trying to explain or excuse anything you do. Just routine driving procedures, plus they may ask you about how to operate parts of the car (lights, turning indicators, parking brake, emergency blinkers).

    Checking your mirrors to show that you are paying attention to traffic around you is a good idea. I'm not sure that they can really watch your eyeballs move, so it seems sensible to move your head slightly as you look in side-view or rear-view mirrors. Don't exceed posted speed limits nor go waaay too slow.

    And I've heard that when turning left you should pull into the intersection only when you are the first car turning left. Don't sit on or just beyond the crosswalk if you are behind another car, since it may turn at the last minute, leaving you turning left after the light turns red.

    Crashing into a police car or the wall of the Motor Vehicle building is not recommended, and neither is listening to your iPod and talking on your cell phone while taking the test!
  13. plinden macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2004
    It looks like you're in southern california? I had to do a California driving test a couple of years ago when I moved here (despite having 18 years accident-free driving experience in Ireland)

    It'll be about 20-25 minutes, around a few quiet streets near the DMV. There'll be a few stop signs, a simple parallel parking request in a space wide enough for four or five cars (so that's not too difficult), a couple of lane changes. Be careful driving through the DMV carpark - the first thing the examiner will look out for is due care (e.g. < 5 mph) through the carpark.

    Look in the rear view mirror before making any maneouvre, and make sure you move your head to look, don't glance, so that the examiner knows you looked. And look back at the blind spots on either side when changing lanes. Also, although Californians never use their signals, you should do so at least for the test, and start signalling five seconds before turning or changing lanes.

    Keep at or under the speed limit, but remember there are circumstances where even being at the speed limit is dangerous.

    You are allowed a few minor mistakes (can't remember how many ... seven? Nine?) so as long as you don't do anything dangerous like driving through a Stop or rear-ending a police car, don't worry if you notice you've made a mistake. I got two markdowns for stopping at junctions that didn't have stop signs.

    The examiner isn't out to get you, so s/he won't ask you to do anything nutty.

    Before I did my first test at 17, those who had already passed loved telling stories to scare us, like the person who did the test flawlessly and pulled up at the end of the test. Then the examiner asked if she had seen the dog chasing the sheep in the field during the test (this was a rural area), and when she said she had, failed her for not keeping her attention on the road. That is almost certainly an urban (or rural?) myth though.
  14. ham_man macrumors 68020


    Jan 21, 2005
    They make ya'll take a test?! In Texas, they just give you the license... :cool: :eek: :D
  15. poppe macrumors 68020


    Apr 29, 2006
    Woodland Hills
    Nebraska: I had the same thing happen to me!!! I was driving and it was my first time driving in one way lanes and also dual lanes... The guy was old fashioned to... My stepmom knew him from friend of her parents she said he had polio when he was a boy and thats why he had a limp, and he believed the in the motto children should be seen but not heard... Yeah I didn't signal once... and failed...

    Holy crap driving down here is so bad... I wouldn't be surprised
  16. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Cars in Texas have multiple horns. One horn is under the hood and honks (we have that too!), while the other one is a set of cattle horns on the the front of the car, either by design or because somebody hit livestock. So isn't it confusing when the driving instructor asks you to "hit the horn"? :p

    Here in California we don't really need driving tests for two reasons. First, everyone drives a huge SUV (although only some have swimming pools inside) so everyone is completely safe no matter what they run into. They might spill their alfalfa-sprout yogurt shake, but that's about it. Second, traffic is so slow that you can't get up enough speed to hurt anyone. :p :p

    Back to the real advice. Many people do indeed fail because of bumbling their lane changes. Signal, look, THEN change lanes -- not all at once. And keep both hands on the wheels all the time, in the proper positions (except when doing the hand-over-hand turning movement, of course). No one-hand or one-finger driving until after you get your license.
  17. Kwyjibo macrumors 68040


    Nov 5, 2002
    I took my test in Illinois,

    the exaggerated stopping at stop signs is good universal advice.

    The testers near me often asked questions during the test like this ...

    "If you were parking up hill, which way would you turn your tires?"
    We were taught the old "Up, Up and Away " chant and I got that question easily enough.

    One of my friends got asked what the legal limit for alcohol was for someone at their age? The answer was 0.

    Sometimes they'll ask awareness questions as what was / is the speed limit, or about a children at play sign.

    If you're comfortable driving I think you'll do just fine, but if you're not comfortable just wait and don't rush it, as hard as that might seem.
  18. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    Check out this's old, but still scary. (Maybe even scarier today...)

    In California, about 12% of the people on the road either never had a license or are driving on a suspended or revoked license. And they're about five times more likely to cause a fatal crash than licensed drivers.
  19. someguy macrumors 68020


    Dec 4, 2005
    Still here.
    Don't sweat the driver's test. It's not nearly as hard as I think it should be. Drivers around here are so terrible, I just wish they'd make the test extremely difficult and then make everyone re-take it.

    Just remember everything you've learned about driving, follow the obvious laws like speed limits and whatnot, and you'll do fine. :)
  20. ITASOR macrumors 601


    Mar 20, 2005
    Oneida, NY
    Here, it's about 5-7 minutes. Parallel parking, 3 point turn, hand signals (I think), 4 way stops, traffic lights, etc. I have mine scheduled for August 23rd. Sounds like it'll be a blast, lol, can't wait. =\
  21. benthewraith macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Miami, FL
    No, they won't make you go get more gas.

    They'll make sure you use your turn signal (I know a lot of people don't use their turn signal anymore. :( )
    Driving in reverse.
    Making a uturn on a two lane road. (180 turn on a two lane road)
    That you know how to park correctly.
    Surprisingly, I was never tested on how to parallel park, though I've never really done it until I was taught in Drivers Ed. class.

    That sort of stuff. They'll also make sure you have both working brakes, and know how to use the console stuff.

    You'll be fine. I actually did it while it was raining and still past, course, I ended up pulling into the parking lot a little fast and the bottom skid plate hit the ground, but the car was fine. :)
  22. nbs2 macrumors 68030


    Mar 31, 2004
    A geographical oddity
    Road MD we have a planned course that the MVA (our DMV)specifically uses for the test. No traffic is concerning, but at least you don't wreck anything...
  23. Coolnat2004 macrumors 6502


    Jan 12, 2005
    I recently took mine in Kentucky.. and it was pretty easy. Just make sure that you drive slowly in the parking lot, check down any road you may be turning into (I got points off for not looking down an alley next to the building..) and obey the speed limit very carefully. I was told to go 20 on a 25 speed limit zone (residential streets).

    I got an 82%... with 80% being the minimum to pass. It's mainly because of some bad luck and some stupid lady walking her dog in the MIDDLE OF THE STREET.

    And unfortunately, they don't try to trick you. I had been waiting for the person to not put on their seat belt and me to have to tell them to put it on.. but they got in and put on their seatbelt and continued to say flat out that they're not going to trick me. Damn.. I was prepared for it..

    Anyway.. don't sweat it.
  24. Oblivious macrumors 6502

    Jan 19, 2006
    I would suggest driving around the area of the RMV/DMV where your test will be for a bit. My driving instructor took me there every session and through the route of the typical driving test. Oh, and I suggest making ridiculous exaggerated movements when checking your mirrors or changing lanes and such. My friends have said the officers can be really anal about that stuff.

    In the end, I had an insanely easy driving test. I had to do a 3-point turn, back up 30 feet or so and drive around a few blocks. Nothing more. Hell, the officer didn't even check to see if our car was registered.:p It honestly took no more than 5 minutes.:D
  25. benthewraith macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2006
    Miami, FL
    Same with me. :D

    On the other hand, even if you fail, you can still claim to be a safe driver. Have you seen how they drive in Jamaica? :eek:

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