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"Through our years of teaching people to drive, the demand for female driving instructors has grown year upon year. There is a huge variety of reasons for this, but generally speaking pupils often just feel more at ease with a woman driving instructor.
If the pupil feels relaxed behind the wheel, they progress more quickly through the different modules of learning to drive, most importantly, learning to drive becomes an enjoyable experience."

Driving Test Advice - Vehicle Checks

As from 1st September 2003, all driving test candidates will be required to answer two questions selected from those listed below, concerning the operation and maintenance of their vehicle.  The examiner will ask these questions at the beginning of the test once the eyesight check has been carried out.  One or both questions answered incorrectly will result in one driving fault being recorded.

HEALTH & SAFETY – HOT ENGINE, ALWAYS SWITCH OFF ENGINE.

BRAKES

Q. Show me how you would check the Parking Brake (handbrake) for excessive wear.

A. Demonstrate by applying the parking brake that when it is fully applied it secures itself and is not at the end of the working travel.

Q. Tell me how you would check that the brakes are working before starting off on a journey.

A. Brakes should be tested as you set off; they should not feel spongy nor pull the vehicle to one side.

Q. Tell me how you would know if there was a problem with your anti lock braking system.

A. Warning light should illuminate if there is a fault with the anti lock braking system.

COCKPIT DRILL

Q. Show me how you would check that the horn is working. (Off road only)

A. Check is carried out by using control (turn on ignition if necessary).

STEERING

Q. Show me/ explain how you would check that the power assisted steering is working before starting a journey.

A. If the steering becomes heavy the system may not be working properly.  Before starting a journey two simple checks can be made: -

Gentle pressure on the steering wheel, while the engine is started should result in a slight but noticeable movement as the system begins to operate.

Alternatively turn the steering wheel just after moving off will give an immediate indication that the power assistance is functioning.

TYRES

Q. Tell me where you would find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this car and how the tyre pressures should be checked.

A. Manufacturer’s guide, use a reliable pressure gauge, check and adjust pressures when tyres are cold, don’t forget spare tyre, remember to refit valve caps.

Q. Tell me how you would check the tyres to ensure that they have sufficient tread depth and that their general condition is safe to use on the road.

A. No cuts and bulges, 1.6mm of tread depth across the central ¾ of the breadth of the tyre and around the entire outer circumference.

DEMISTER

Q. Show me how you would set the demister controls to clear all the windows effectively, this should include both front and rear screens.

A. Set all relevant controls including; fan, temperature, air direction/ source and heated screen to clear windscreen and windows. Engine does not have to be started for this demonstration.

LIGHTS

Q. Show me how you would switch on the rear fog light(s) and explain when you would use it/them. (No need to exit vehicle).

A. Operate switch (turn on dipped headlights and ignition if necessary). Check warning light is on. Explain use.

Q. Show me how you switch your headlight from dipped to main beam and explain how you would know the main beam is on whilst inside the car.

A. Operate switch (with ignition or engine on if necessary), check with main beam warning light.

Q. Tell me how you would check that the headlights and tail lights are working. (No need to exit vehicle).

A. Explanation: Operate switch (turn on ignition if necessary), then walk round vehicle. (As this is a “Tell Me” question, there is no need to physically check the lights).

Q. Show me how you would check that the direction indicators are working.

A. Applying the indicators or hazard-warning switch and check functioning of all indicators. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine).

Q. Show me how you would check that the brake lights are working on this car. (I can assist you, if you need to switch the ignition on, please don’t start the engine).

A. Operate brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows, garage doors, etc, or ask someone to help. (may need to switch ignition on, prompt not to start engine).

FLUID LEVELS

Q. Open the bonnet, identify where you would check the engine oil level and tell me how you would check that the engine has sufficient oil.

A. Identify dipstick / oil level indicator, describe checking of oil level against the minimum/maximum markers.

Q. Open the bonnet, identify where you would check the engine coolant level and tell me how you would check that the engine has the correct level.

A. Identify high/low level markings on header tank where fitted or radiator filler cap and describe how to top up to correct level.

Q. Identify where the windscreen washer reservoir is and tell me how you would check the windscreen washer level.

A. Identify reservoir and explain how to check level.

Q. Open the bonnet, identify where the brake fluid reservoir is and tell me how you would check that you have a safe level of hydraulic brake fluid.

A. Identify reservoir, check level against high/low markings.

Q. Show me how you would clean the windscreen using the windscreen washer and wipers.

A. Operate control to wash and wipe windscreen (turn ignition on if necessary).