Frequently Asked Questions:
For how long will my Pre-licensing Course Certificate be valid?
Your Pre-licensing Course Certificate is valid for one year from the date it is issued. Your certificate must be valid on the date that you make your Road Test appointment, but can be expired on the date you take your road test.
What can I do if my pre-licensing course certificate (MV-278) expires before the day that I take my road test?
You must have a valid certificate when you schedule a road test. If your certificate is expired, you cannot schedule a road test.
You are not required to have a valid certificate when you take your road test. You can take your road test if your certificate is expired.
You must have your certificate with you the day of your road test. Not a picture or photo copy of the certificate!
I have my first learner permit. How many times can I take the road test if I fail?
We will do everything we can to make sure you are prepared to pass your road test the first time! However...
After you receive a learner permit (Class D, Class DJ,Class E, Class M, or Class MJ), you can take two road tests. If you fail your first road test, you can schedule one more road test and you do not pay a fee.
If you fail the second road test, you can pay a fee of $10 to DMV that allows you two more opportunities to pass the road test. If you do not pass the road test, you can pay the fee again and take one or two more road tests. If you pass the road test on the first of two tries, you do not receive a refund for the second road test.
You can pay the $10 fee for more road tests online with your credit card or at a local DMV office.
If your learner permit expires, you cannot take a road test. You must re-apply for a valid learner permit.
What do I need to do before I take my road test?
Once you have a learner permit, you must:
- obey the learner permit restrictions on where and when you may drive
- complete a 5-hour Pre-licensing Course or a high school or college Driver Education Course
- get an appropriate amount of supervised driving practice 1
- if you are under age 18, you must wait at least six months from the date you received your learner permit to schedule your road test
- if you are under age 18, you must have a minimum of 50 hours of supervised practice driving that includes at least 15 hours of driving after sunset before you take a road test. You must bring to the road test a completed Certification of Supervised Driving (MV-262) signed by your parent or guardian.
- over 18 it is recommended but not required that you have at minimum 20 hours of practice before attempting a road test.
What should I practice for my road test?
- Steering: Steer smoothly whether you are driving straight ahead, turning or backing up.
- Acceleration: Accelerate smoothly and moderately. Don't race the engine or cause it to stall.
- Braking: Bring the vehicle to a stop gently. Start braking well before your stopping position to avoid abrupt stops. Make sure you stop your vehicle in the proper position of the lane.
- Gears: Always be sure your vehicle is in the correct gear. With either an automatic or a manual transmission, shift into the proper gear at the right time without "grinding" the gears.
- Speed: Obey the posted speed limit, of course, but also adjust your speed properly due to weather, road, visibility and traffic conditions.
- Following distance: Keep an adequate space "cushion" between your vehicle and those you are following. Use the "two second rule" described in the Driver's Manual. Be sure to increase your following distance in poor weather or visibility.
- Traffic signs, signals and markings: Know the meanings of signs, signals and pavement markings, and obey them consistently.
- Stopping position: If a stop is required, stop your vehicle before it reaches an intersecting street. If stop lines or crosswalks are present, stop before crossing them. If your view is blocked after stopping behind the crosswalk, move up until you can clearly see your way, then stop again if necessary.
- Lane selection and position: Keep your vehicle in the proper traffic lane, especially when preparing to make turns. Don't allow room for another vehicle to pass you on the side that you are turning toward.
- Communication: Let other drivers and pedestrians know which way you want to go. Use your directional signals or horn consistently and at the proper times.
- Observation: Look for and identify potential problems or hazards in the traffic around you - not just straight ahead, but behind you and on either side. Check your mirrors frequently, but be sure to look over your shoulder behind you when changing lanes or backing up.
- Anticipate and react: Anticipate possible driving errors by others and be ready to react safely to make up for their mistakes.