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Welcome to Part 2 of the Show Me, Tell Me questions.

Remember, your practical driving test isn’t just about the physical act of driving. Before you even get in the car you’ll be asked some questions which we call Tell Me questions. You’ll be asked one Tell Me question before you start driving and one Show Me questions when you’re in the car.

Knowing the answers to all these questions isn’t just important to pass your test but it’s important for your everyday driving.

We’ve broken down the questions for you, so read on to prepare yourself for the official Tell Me questions and answers.

Quick tips -

  1. The external checks are about your lights and tyres
  2. When checking, start from the bottom and work up
  3. If there are puddles under the car that shouldn’t be there, you might have a leak
  4. Make sure your tyres are not flat, a quick look will tell you if you have a slow puncture
  5. Be careful if you’re anywhere near builders or building sites, the possibility that you’ll drive over a nail or screw is high!
  6. Remember to make sure your wing mirrors are out before driving off
  7. Make sure your windows are clean and clear, out and in
  8. Check that the roof of your car is clear. You don’t want whatever’s up there to come off when you’re driving and stop you from seeing

 

Remember: Every car is different so get to know yours. If you’re unsure, that’s what your car handbook is for!

Lights
 

  1. Examiner: Tell me how you’d check the direction indicators are working.

Pupil: Explain to your examiner that you’d operate the switch (turn on ignition if necessary) and then you’d walk around the vehicle checking that they were working.

Top tip: If your indicator lights are flashing too quickly on the dashboard, your bulb has probably gone. Check and replace if needed.




Turn signals working
 

2)  Examiner: Tell me how you’d check that the headlights and tail lights are working.
Pupil: Explain you’d operate the necessary switches (turn on ignition if necessary), then walk around vehicle checking that they were working.

 3) Examiner: How would you check your brake light is working?
Pupil: Explain that you’d operate the brake pedal, make use of reflections in windows or doors, or by asking someone to help.

Top tip: On your driving test, ask your examiner to stand behind the car to help you check.

Be safe: Your brake lights should be checked routinely, if it doesn’t work how does the car behind you know you are stopping?

Save Time: When practicing and checking your lights you can do them all at the same time. Turn on your ignition so the dashboard lights up (do NOT turn the engine on) this how you can check all your warning lights are working. Then stick the car into reverse, put your hazards on, lights on full beam and turn the fog lights on. With that, a quick walk round the car shows you all lights are working.

 

The secret driving instructor:
Always carry a spare set of bulbs. And know how to change them. It has got me out of trouble before. Remember the lights are so people can see them.

Tyres

Remember: Your tyres are more important than you might realise. If you look after them, they’ll look after you.

  1. Examiner: Where would you find the information for the recommended tyre pressures for this car and how should you you check the pressure in your tyres?

Pupil: You can find the information in the manufacturer's guide and you’d check the pressure by using a reliable pressure gauge when tyres are cold.

 

 

 

HANDBOOK

 

2) Examiner: How would you check the tyres to ensure they have sufficient tread depth and that they are road worthy?
Pupil: You are looking for 1.6mm of tread depth across the central three-quarters of the breadth of the tyre as well as, around the entire outer circumference of the tyre. You’d also check to make sure there are no cuts or bulges.

KIT

 

GAUGETYRE
 

 

Be a driving pro: The more tread you have, the better. You can stop more efficiently and be much safer on the roads.
Top tip: All tyres have wear bars in the groves which will help you see when you’re near the limit.


The secret driving instructor:
The 1.6 mm limit was set years ago and since then, cars have become bigger and faster. The brakes have improved too but if you’re tyres aren’t right then these things don’t matter. Make sure you have good tread. Enough tread to cover the edge of a 20 Pence piece. 

 

 

For driving lessons in Gosport, Portsmouth , Southsea and the surrounding area with patient professional Instructors, Contact us on 02393 75 25 25 or use our  online contact form.

 

How         to choose a driving instructor?

Finding the right driving instructor can be hard. You have to spend a lot of time with this person, you have to be able to talk to them and take direction from them. So we’ve put together a few things to consider whilst looking for your perfect instructor.

1) Ask a friend! Your friends know you and they’ll know if you’ll get on with their instructor or an instructor they know.

2) The bus test. If your instructor sat next to you on the bus would you move or would you stay sat next to them? If you’d move, they’re probably not the instructor for you.

 

3) Reviews. In today’s world of information overload, reviews are a great way of getting answers to your questions from real people. If a driving instructor has lots of reviews, they’re probably doing something right!  

4)  Professionalism is important. You are paying your instructor for a professional service, so as much as you need to get along with your instructor, they need to be professional too. Professionalism can be shown in lots of different ways. For example, at driving-pro, our instructors like to dress professionally. They also make sure their cars are clean both inside and out.

 

5) Answering the phone. If you phone an instructor directly and they don’t answer first thing, that’s a good thing! They’re probably out driving and respecting the fact they’re working. Just leave a message and they’ll get back to you!

The Secret Driving Instructor - As an instructor, I prefer to speak to people over the phone. Old school, I know. Talking on the phone gives instructors a better idea of what you’re looking for and what you need without a long back and forth. It means we can give a better and more bespoke service.  

6) Code of Conduct. Has your chosen instructor signed a Code of Conduct? Ask this question! You should also find out if your instructor has terms and conditions, you’ll then both be on the same page!

7) Do you feel comfortable with your instructor? If you don’t, we suggest finding a new instructor. There’s nothing wrong with that! At driving-pro all of our students know that if they ever have an issue or they’d like to speak to someone who is not their instructor, they are able to. We want our students to be comfortable.

The Secret Driving Instructor - There have been times in my career when I’ve had to pass on students to another instructor or suggest we terminate lessons because I haven’t got on with the pupil! Feeling comfortable works both ways.

8) Don’t get hung up on pass rates. It’s easy to, we know. You will pass your test. You will pass your test in your own time, and it mainly comes down to your commitment, the amount of miles spent on the road and your confidence.

9) Instructor grade. There are two grades, A and B. The grade is supplied by the government. At driving-pro although we take grades into account most important for us is professionalism, people skills, ability and teaching methods.

10) Price. Learning to drive is an investment. Of course cheap lessons or deals such as ten hours for £99 or the first five for £55 are attractive but ask yourself why these lessons are so cheap. A good and in demand driving instructor will charge appropriately for their service which ultimately could end up costing you less.

The Secret Driving Instructor - Having spent many years in the industry I’ve learnt that there are many reasons how and why there a schools and instructors that charge so cheaply for lessons, and these reasons aren’t good.

If you want to find out more about any of driving-pro’s instructors, you can give us a call on 02393 75 25 25 or check out their profiles on the website!  

 

Next week we’ll be looking at more Tell Me questions (yes, there’s more) but you’ll be a Tell Me Pro in no time!

 

 

Most experienced drivers as well as learners have feeling of panic when confronted with an emergency vehicle, during lessons this is something your instructor will explain. To help it is worth visiting the official video “Blue Light Aware” on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=btRHvQEIkcU) but always remember you not expected to break the law in order to get out of the way

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your practical driving test isn’t just about the physical act of driving. Before you even get in the car you’ll be asked some questions which we call Tell Me questions. You’ll be asked one Tell Me question before you start driving and one Show Me questions when you’re in the car.

Knowing the answers to all these questions isn’t just important to pass your test but it’s important for your everyday driving.

We’ve broken down the questions for you, so read on to prepare yourself for the official Tell Me questions and answers.

ENGINE:

Be a driving pro -

Make sure you know how to open the bonnet of the car and close it safely

  • Make sure ties, hair, necklaces etc. do NOT get caught in the engine!
  • If it’s in a clear plastic container, it’s meant to be checked visually
  • Different parts of the engine are coloured to draw attention to them so familiarise yourself with your car and it’s colours (remember each car is different!)
  • Oil and brakes have a red warning lights on the dashboard inside the car and engine coolant has a temperature gauge
  • Red means danger! (Pull over as soon as you can safely)
  • Make sure the engine is off before opening the bonnet.


TOP TIP: Every car is different, in these pictures we have used a Vauxhall Corsa as this is a very popular first car. However, ALWAYS check your handbook to see where things are and how to maintain them properly and if you’re not sure...pop to your friendly local garage and they’ll be happy to help you out!


1.Examiner: Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that the engine has sufficient oil.

Pupil: On a flat and level surface, having let the oil settle, you identify the dipstick/oil level indicator and check the oil level against the minimum and maximum markers by removing the dipstick, wiping it clean putting it back in and pulling it back out again.

Impress your examiner: Know exactly where to put the oil and what kind of oil you need.


Be safe:
Remember there is an oil warning light on your dashboard and if it goes red, pull over (as soon as you can safely)!

 

 

2) Examiner: Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that you have a safe level of hydraulic brake fluid.

Pupil: You identify the correct reservoir and check that the level is between the minimum and maximum.

 

Top Tip: Your handbrake is linked to the warning light on your dashboard. You need to make sure your handbrake is completely off when you’re driving as, if it’s not, the car can still move but the warning light can mask any danger if your handbrake is partially on.

 

 

3)   Examiner: Open the bonnet and tell me how you’d check that your engine has sufficient engine coolant.

 

Pupil: You would identify the correct reservoir, check the level against the markings or the radiator filler cap and describe how you would fill to the correct level.

Top tip: If the coolant level is low, add the correct coolant to the reservoir (not the radiator itself). You can use diluted coolant by itself, or a 50/50 mixture of concentrated coolant and distilled water. When the coolant rises to the cold fill line, replace the cap and tighten it until you feel it click. But always check your handbook oh and if you take the top off when it’s still hot and under pressure, you’ll be covered in boiling hot engine coolant, so be careful!

 

 



Be safe:
Remember, your engine coolant is connected to a temperature gauge on your dashboard!

 

 

 

Next week we’ll be looking at more Tell Me questions (yes, there’s more) but you’ll be a Tell Me Pro in no time!

 

For driving lessons in Gosport, Portsmouth , Southsea and the surrounding area with patient professional Instructors, Contact us on 02393 75 25 25 or use our  online contact form.

 

Are you ready for your test? Do you practice safe driving? How can you make sure your first time is really good?

As a front seat passenger if you have found yourself going for the imaginary footbrake, it was not a very nice feeling. It meant the driver was going to fast.

On a driving test the examiner will be that front seat passenger and will be mentally driving the car with you. He will look and see what you are doing and compare it to what you should be doing, but making allowance for the fact you are a learner.

The advice from the test people (The DVSA) is you must be driving consistently well, with confidence and without assistance. So what does this mean?

The aim should be to go to the driving test where you are unlucky to fail rather than lucky to pass.

The DVSA say you have to be a 'level 5'. This means you drive without prompting or assistance.

So what are the levels?
1. Introduced.
2. Done under instruction.
3. Done when prompted.
4. Seldom prompted.
5. No prompting at all.

Besides driving without prompting another way of viewing if you are a level 5 and ready for your test is. If you have you reached something called unconscious competence. This means you do not think about how to do something, you just do it.

Writing can be a good example of unconscious competence. You do not think about how to write, but rather what you are writing about. The parallel with driving is you do not think about how to control the car but what you want to do with the car.

So are there other levels of competence? And if so what are these other levels and what do they mean.

1. Unconscious Incompetence:
You do not even know what it is let alone how to do it.
You have no idea what driving is.

2. Conscious Incompetence:
You know what it is but you certainty can not do it.
You know what driving is but you can not drive.

3. Conscious Competence:
You are thinking about doing it properly.
You are now learning to drive, but still thinking about how to do it.

4. Unconscious Competence:

You do not think about it any more you just do it.

In driving terms you are not thinking about how to drive but rather where you are going to drive.

What all this is saying is that if you have internalised the practice of safe driving you are ready for your test.