Road Testing – Information & Video

Believe me – I know what it takes to pass the road test.  Please watch my 8-minute video for details and before you take the road test.  The road test will last approximately 20 minutes.  Testing hours are flexible and include Saturdays. I will not recommend that you get tested if I believe you are not ready to pass the road test. However, the final decision is yours.

If you need to take the road test, text for an appointment at 801.602.6065.

Driving companies cannot test their own students, however, we can recommend other certified testers.

It is possible to get road-tested before your 16th birthday. The advantage of private testing is that you can usually get tested immediately.  Most testers charger around $45 for the test.

Cash and Venmo only. No checks or credit cards.

A current learner’s permit is required to be tested. Make sure the 9-digit number is legible.

The DLD (Drivers License Division) has a waiting list for tests, so plan ahead. You will need to provide your own car and be prepared to parallel park between cones that are 25 feet apart. The DLD is not open on Saturdays, Sundays, or holidays.

If you are under 18 years of age, a parent/guardian will be required to be with you to obtain your driver’s license. The parent/guardian will sign a document that states they provided you at least 34 hours of supervised driving and that they will be financially responsible for your driving.

If you are 18 years of age, you must take the Homestudy course and complete 6 hours of driving with a certified instructor. We offer a Homestudy course and driving simultaneously. You do not need to have a learner’s permit for six months.

If you are 19 years of age, you have two choices. You can take a Homestudy course and drive with an instructor and get your license immediately. Or, you can wait 3 months and not take a course or drive with an instructor.

If you fail your road test, you must wait 24 hours before retaking it. You can go to any certified tester. If you need more practice, text me at 801-602-6065.  You will need to show the examiner that you can do the following ten skills:

1.  Right turns: (Giros ala derecho) Remember to signal, check your mirrors, look over your shoulder and then go. I call this (S.M.O.G.) You can turn right on a red light if there isn’t any traffic coming in your lane but you must stop completely first at the base of the stop sign or the first white line for 3 seconds and then move forward slowing until you can see clearly. Don’t ever assume that no one is coming and if you’re not sure if you have time to pull out in front of someone, always wait. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

2.  Left turns: (Giros ala izquierda) Left turns are harder and more dangerous because you must yield to oncoming traffic. Don’t forget to (S.M.O.G.) before getting into the turning lane if you have one and then another (S.M.O.G.) before making your turn. Remember that left turns and “U” turns must yield to everyone else. You should pull out halfway into the intersection if you can and prepare to turn which allows drivers behind you to also pull out and therefore get through the intersection quickly when there’s an opening or when the light turns yellow and everyone has stopped.  Left turn protected/permitted green arrows give you the right of way to turn without having to yield.  These along with “roundabouts” have increased the safety of left turns.

3.  “U” turns: (Tu turno) From multi-lanes: turn from the inside lane to the outside lane. Residential: stop on both sides of the street and (S.M.O.G.) when pulling over to the curb and then again when pulling back unless you can make it without going completely off the road. Turning lane: get between the yellow lines and make sure you go into the outside lane regardless of how many lanes there are.  If you are on a narrow street, you can still do one if you are at a “T” intersection.  This is where a road enters into your street from your left.  To make this work, you will need to pull over to the right side of your street and stop completely before making the “U” turn by using part of the street to your left.  However, because you went off of your street, you will need to stop completely again before entering back onto your street.  Don’t forget to (S.M.O.G.) every time you move the car over or turn. If you put on a signal for any reason, then you also need to head check. (H.C.)  You can only miss 2 of them.  If you miss three of them, it is considered a bad habit and you will need to take it over again.

4.  3 pt. turn: (3 pt. Giro) remember to (S.M.O.G.) before you pull over to the right side of the road and stop completely before making it. You are trying to make a “U” turn, but when you see there is not enough room to do so, you do a 3 pt. turn instead. Remember to (S.M.O.G.) to the left before pulling across the road in case someone is passing you.  Look back between the seats when backing up and signal to the right as you turn the wheel to the right while backing up. Be careful not to back up too far and hit a mailbox or anything else that might be there.  Halfway across the street should be enough space to finish your 3 pt. turn.  Signal left when you leave.  This type of turn should be done quickly because you are blocking the traffic in both directions.  The reason it’s called a  3 point turn is that you stop three times.  Most people use 2 pt. turns to turn around but the testers will not allow you to use personal driveways.

5.  Lane changes: (Cambio de carril) S.M.O.G. first and then don’t slow down and please take off your blinker when finished.  You will need to do four of these.  Two to the right and two to the left.

6.  Hill parking: (Estacionamiento en la Colima) wheels should be turned right for downhill and touch the curb, left for uphill and touch the curb. The best way to do this is to put your car in “N” (neutral) and let it roll slowly to the curb. Remember to (S.M.O.G.) when pulling over and pulling back onto the road. You need to get your car as close to the curb as possible without hitting the curb. After the wheels touch the curb, put it in “park” and put on the parking brake (emergency brake). Don’t hit the curb when pulling back onto the road after parking going down a hill.  For this reason, I recommend that you back up for a least 1-2 feet before proceeding forward.  Once again, don’t forget to (S.M.O.G.)

7.  Straight line backing: (Apoyo) S.M.O.G. to the right and pull over about 2′ from the curb.  Pull your car parallel to the curb by pulling forward until your steering wheel is straight.  Look back between the seats the entire time and don’t use any mirrors, only use your left hand on top of your steering wheel and put your right arm between the seats. This will help you to turn your body enough to see where you are backing. This is the one, and only time you should use just one hand when driving. If this is done correctly, you won’t have to turn the steering wheel at all.  The tester will watch you back up for about 50 feet.  Don’t forget to (S.M.O.G.) again before entering back onto the street.

8.  Smooth stopping: (alto/para) Stop behind the stop signs and the first white line at intersections. Stop completely! (3 seconds)  Then pull up slowly and look better if needed. If you are going straight, make sure you look both ways first. Remember that stop signs and stop lights don’t stop cars, people do.  If there is any doubt in your mind whether you should go, always wait.  Play it safe.  It’s always better to be safe than sorry.  Check for bikers and pedestrians too. Once you commit to going, hurry and speed up to the correct speed.  Be careful at 2-way stops, because some people mistake them for 4-way stops.  Review the “right of way” rule for a 4-way stop.

9. Correct speed: (Velocidad) Remember only to go 20 mph or under in school zones when the lights are flashing and 25 mph in residential areas. Don’t ask your examiner what the speed limit is because it’s your responsibility to see the signs. You are always better off to go a little under than a little over. They will take you on at least three roads at different speeds. You will not be tested on the freeway.  It is also important to speed up when you enter a street from a stop. Not speeding up to the correct speed can be dangerous because it makes cars have to slow down or pass you which increases the chances of a crash.  You will fail if you go 10 mph over or under the posted speed limit.

10. Parallel Parking: (Parque paralello) The five basic steps are:  1. (S.M.O.G.) before pulling over to the right, which would be the left side of the car you are parking behind.  Slowly stop with your right mirror lined up with the left mirror of the car you are parking behind.  It is always done by backing up.  If you are using tall orange cones, line the back of your car up with the front cones.  Your car should be parallel with the car you are parking behind and about 2 – 3 feet away from it.  2. Turn your wheels slightly to the right, look back when backing up, and try to get the car on a 45-degree angle and keep it there. (most students turn the steering wheel too much and therefore take a chance of hitting the curb)  If you want to check in front of you or your mirrors, you must do it by stopping first.  Remember: If you are backing up, you must be looking back. 3. Park about 12″- 15″ from the curb. It’s better to be a little too far from it than hit it. Touching the curb for car placement is permissible.  When you turn your wheels back to the left, the front end will go towards the curb, and this should be done when the front of your car is completely past the back of the car you are parking behind.  4. Park in the center of the space, you should see the bottom of their back tires which is equal to about half a car length. You can use up to three “pull-ups” if needed to get your car parallel with the curb. A “pull-up” is done by pulling your car forward as close to the back of the car in front of you as possible and then move it over closer to the curb.  If necessary, you will need to pull up slightly after doing this.  Remember to put the car in park and put on the parking brake if necessary. 5. Back up about 2′ and (S.M.O.G.) before re-entering back onto the road. The space for parking is about 25′ long. Some testers have you parallel park behind one car. If that’s the case, make sure you back up a bit more than normal. Take your time and go slow. If you hit the cones and are tested at the DLD, you automatically fail. Parallel parking is the hardest of the ten skills and requires the most practice.

If you make the same mistake three or more times, you will have to take your test over again. Remember 3 strikes and you’re out.  They consider three mistakes a bad habit.  The most common mistake is forgetting to head check after putting on your turn signal.  There are approximately 20 head checks on your road test.  The test lasts about 15 minutes, and you can only miss 20 points.

You will be taught the correct way to master these driving skills during the driving sessions. You will not be required to drive on the freeway on your test, although we will have you drive on the freeway for experience and practice. Don’t worry – there is a first time for everything.

Your parents or guardian should have had you practice these required skills. Practice doesn’t always make perfect, but perfect practice makes perfection. Practice until you can’t get it wrong.  Several students have completed their parent/guardian hours before driving, but have never practiced parallel parking, hill parking, 3 point turns, “U” turns, or straight-line backing. No worries. We will help you!

Good luck, be confident, and drive defensively!  That means: “Watch out for the other guy and don’t be the other guy.  Try to predict possible problems and conflicts in advance before they happen.” 

Please watch my 8-minute video if you haven’t already done so – your success rate for passing is much higher when you know what to expect.        

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