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Driving Test Questions

“Show Me, Tell Me” Driving Test Questions.

You will be asked 2 of these questions on your driving test.  If the question starts with a ‘show me’ then the driving examiner will want you to demonstrate.  If the question starts with a ‘tell me’, then you will simply tell him or her, sometimes by pointing.  For example you will not be expected to actually check the oil; you just have to point and explain what you would do.Take your time to look through and learn these essential car care facts.  It is a great idea if you can look under the bonnet of a few different makes of cars, to familiarise yourself.  Doing these checks on a regular basis is not only essential, but it will save you money and cut down on the possibility of a breakdown or accident.



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

Locate the controls and operate.  This will be different in different cars; your driving instructor will help you with this.  Some cars have heated front and rear screens.  On most cars it is better to have the fan on full, directed to the front windscreen and on hot.  Air conditioning directed towards the front windscreen can also clear it. 

Fog Lights

Fog Lights.

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.  Please don’t start the engine.)

Locate the control and operate; this will be different in different cars; your driving instructor will help you with this, it is usually part of the headlight switch.  You must only use your fog lights if visibility drops below 100 metres.

Braking System

Braking System.

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

You would know this by a warning light on the instrument panel; the anti-lock braking system light usually stays on;  it is vital that you have this fixed immediately.


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

Locate the control and operate; you will know the full beam is on when a blue headlight symbol is illuminated on your instrument panel.  This will be different in different cars; your driving instructor will help you with this.

Head Restraint

Head Restraint.

Tell me how you make sure your head restraint is correctly adjusted so it provides the best protection in the event of a crash.

The head restraint is there to protect your neck and therefore the top of the head restraint should be level with the top of your head, you should check this as a matter of course every time you drive.  Your driving instructor will teach you this on your very first driving lesson.



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

Locate the control and operate; this is usually on the same control as your wipers.  This will be different in different cars; your driving instructor will help you with this.


Oil Level

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.

Identify the dipstick/oil level indicator; remove the dip stick, clean with a dry soft cloth and replace, remove once more then read the markings.  The oil should be between the min and max markers.  Always ensure you check the oil when the car is level.  Most dipsticks are usually orange or yellow.

Coolant Level

Coolant Level.

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

Identify high/low level markings on header tank, which is a clear plastic tank, where fitted or the radiator filler cap, and describe how to top up to the correct level.  The water level should be between the min and max markings.  Never open the radiator filler cap or header tank cap while the engine is hot.  The header tank filler cap is usually yellow.

Brake Fluid

Brake Fluid.

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.

Identify reservoir, which is usually a small square tank with min and max marking, you will sometimes have to shake the car to see the level, or open the cap.  The level should be between the min/max markings.



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

Identify reservoir  which is usually out of site and all you can see is the filler funnel, some have a dip stick, if there is no dipstick, we would suggest you keep the reservoir topped up so that you can see there is water and screen wash in it.  Your car is not roadworthy if you cannot clear the windscreen, and if the washer doesn’t work the car could fail its MOT.  Explain how to check level. 

Tail LightsHead Lights

Headlights and Tail lights.

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

Operate the switch, or turn the lights on. You may have to turn the ignition on in some cars.  You would explain to the examiner that you would walk around vehicle checking all the lights are working.

Tread Depth

Tread Depth.

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?

There should be no cuts or bulges in the tyres at all, and they should all have at least  1.6mm of tread depth across the central three quarters of the tyre and around the entire outer circumference. Remember the tyres are the most important thing on the car for your safely.

Tyre Pressures

Tyre Pressures.

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

You will find the information in the vehicles handbook or somewhere on the car, usually on the inside of the door pillar.  It is best to use a reliable pressure gauge.  Remove the dust caps from the tyre valve and connect the pressure gauge, you can then check the pressure is correct for your car.  Always check the pressures when the tyres are cold.  Remember, when the car is fully loaded with people and bags, you may have to adjust the tyre pressures.  Always check the handbook for your car.



Show me how you would check that the direction indicators are working, commonly known as the signals.

Apply the indicators or hazard warning switch and check they are working by walking around the car. Make sure you check all of them; most modern cars have at least 6. 



Show me how you would check you have enough fuel for the journey.

Check the fuel gauge, in some cars you have to start the ignition for this. You should put fuel in the car before the limit drops to a quarter or on the red, this will avoid dragging sediment from the fuel tank though the engine, which can cause damage.



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

The brakes should not feel spongy or slack.  You should pump the brake before starting the engine until it feels hard, keep holding the brake pedal down gently, then start the engine, if the braking system is working the pedal should go slack. The brakes should also be tested as you set off, Check your mirrors and break firmly in a straight line, the vehicle should not pull to one side, if it does then you need to get your brakes checked out.



Show me how you would check that the horn is working.

This check is carried out by using control, i.e. press the horn.  You may have to turn on ignition. This is usually done off road only, to avoid confusing or startling other road users.


Brake Lights.

Tell me how you would check that the brake lights are working on this car.  (The driving examiner can assist you with this).

Operate brake pedal make use of reflections in windows, walls or garage doors, etc.  Or ask someone to help by walking to the rear of the car and checking the lights come on.  Make sure you check all the brake lights, including the high level brake light.

Parking Brake

Parking Brake.

Show me how you would check the parking brake for excessive wear.

Demonstrate by applying the parking brake fully and check it secures itself.  It should not be at the end of its working travel, which means it does not come all the way up when applied. 

Power Assisted Steering

Power Assisted Steering.

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

If the steering becomes heavy, while driving, the system may not be working properly. Before starting a journey two simple checks can be made.  1. Apply gentle pressure on the steering wheel, by pulling it gently to the left or right, maintain this pressure.  As soon as the engine is started, you should notice the wheel go loose, resulting in a slight but noticeable movement as the system begins to operate. 2. Turning the steering wheel just after moving off should give an immediate indication that the power assistance is functioning, as the steering will feel really heavy if it is not working.

An easy acronym to remember is, F.L.O.W.E.R.

Water and washers.
Rubber (tyres and wipers).


Wow on a Wednesday... Another driving test pass for Jackie, Well done Jack, keep the skills and always enjoy...

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