10 Tips To Pass The Ontario Driving Road Test
There is no other way around it; if you want to acquire Ontario’s driving license, then you must pass behind the wheel driving test. The good news is, it’s not that difficult as long as you prepare yourself adequately.
In this article, we’ll be covering 10 tips to pass the Ontario driving test. Strap your safety belt, and let’s get started, shall we?
- Meet The Vehicle Requirements for The Test
First things first, if the examiner is not satisfied with your vehicle’s condition, you will fail the test before it even begins. For that reason, make sure that you personally inspect your test vehicle one day before the test appointment to confirm if everything is in order.
Some of the vehicle requirements include:
- Functioning headlights, directional signals, brake lights, rearview mirror, and side mirrors.
- Working brakes, tires, steering wheel, horn, windshield wipers, seatbelts, doors, and windows.
- No signs of cracks or debris on the windows or windshield.
- No warning lights on the dashboard.
- Up to date registration card and inspection sticker.
Note: You may be required to demonstrate your ability to use hand signals.
- Obey Traffic Signals
As soon as you drive out of the test center, the examiner will evaluate your ability to recognize and obey traffic signals. Of course, you will encounter obvious traffic indicators like stop signs or red lights, but it’s the unfamiliar traffic signs that will sell you out.
It would be a good idea to revisit all the common traffic signals, signs, and pavement markings as explained in the Ontario Drivers Handbook.
- Don’t Forget to Signal
Even if there are no pedestrians or other drivers on the road, make sure that you signal before making a turn or changing lanes. However, the timing of the signal is important too and you should activate the signals at least 100 feet before making a turn or switching lanes.
Don’t forget to observe your mirrors and look over your shoulders for blind spots before you make that turn or lane change.
- Follow at a Safe Distance
Don’t make the rookie mistake of following the vehicle in front of you too close. As a general rule, there should be a 3 to 4 seconds distance gap between your car and the immediate vehicle in front. This is because you want to avoid a rear-end collision if the car in front of you suddenly comes to a stop.
Otherwise, if the weather is foggy or unusual, you could extend the distance gap to at least 5 seconds.
- Watch out for The Speed Limit
Make sure that you obey the posted speed limit during the driving test. However, if there is no posted speed limit sign (or if you missed it), you should pay attention to your surroundings and drive accordingly.
For instance, if you’re driving through a business or residential area, the maximum speed limit is 60 km. On the other hand, if you’re in a school zone, you shouldn’t go beyond 30 km.
But if the examiner takes you to a highway, you can drive as fast as 100 km. Please note that driving too slow on major highways is just as bad as overspeeding.
Then again, you can adjust your speed limit depending on the road conditions. If the weather is too harsh or the traffic is too congested, it’s okay to slow down a little bit.
- Use The Proper Steering Technique
The examiner will watch you closely to confirm if both of your hands are on the steering wheel. Even though the Ontario driver’s handbook doesn’t advice the exact steering wheel hand placement you should use, we recommend the 10 and 2 o’clock position.
Also, if you’re making a right or left turn, you should use the “push and pull” method. In other words, if you’re making a left turn, you should pull the steering wheel with your left hand and hold it with your right hand.
One more thing; don’t rest your elbow on an open window while driving during the test.
- Don’t Roll Stop
When you come across a stop line or a pedestrian crosswalk, you should come to a complete stop. Keep in mind that if you stop over or past the demarcation line, the examiner will highlight that mistake on the score sheet.
Besides that, some intersections have unmarked legal crosswalks. In most cases, if there are two connecting pedestrian pathways on opposite sides at an intersection and there is no visible stop sign, that could be considered an unmarked crosswalk.
- Be Observant
Here is the thing; if you don’t yield to pedestrians or obstructions during the driving test, you will get an automatic fail. It’s even worse if you hit something or cause an accident.
For that reason, you should always be vigilant on the road to avoid any unexpected scenario. It could be a dog crossing the road. Or maybe school children could be playing nearby. Heck! It could even be an ambulance or a fire truck that wants the right of way. Whatever it is, always make sure that you yield when the situation calls for it.
- Learn How to Reverse and Park
You can be sure as the day the Ontario road test won’t end until the examiner tells you to make a three-point turn, parallel park, or a park on a hill. The best way to learn those basic maneuvers is to practice a couple of times before the driving test.
Just remember, whenever you’re reversing or parking the vehicle, you shouldn’t drive over the sidewalk or hit the curb. Similarly, if you’re parking on an incline, you should position the front tires to the left away from the curb. But if you’re parking on a downhill slope, you should turn the front wheels to the right towards the curb.
- Brake Smoothly
During the driving test, the examiner could ask you to make a quick stop while you’re driving at 30 km. If that happens, the trick is to brake smoothly without stopping too early or too late.
More succinctly, you should slowly push the brake pedal down and once you have the stopping power, hold the position until the car slows down gradually. However, you should practice as much as you can before the driving test.