Driving Test Faults


  • Any deviation from an expected outcome.
  • Or put another way. That which is not perfect.

The examiner will be sat looking and seeing the same things as the candidate.

They will be mentally comparing what should be done with what is actually done.

An examiner can only make what he sees at the time and place.

They will do this by:

  • Moving the seat back as far as he can
  • Or moving the back of the seat back
  • The objective is to see both the road and the candidate

Faults will be classed as:

  • Not worthy – this means it is not recorded at all
  • Minor – a mark in the left hand box
  • Serious – a mark in the first of the two small boxes
  • Dangerous – a mark in the second of the two small boxes

This is decided by the effect they have on other drivers.

Sometimes this is a matter of interpretation. Just like your partner, the examiner is always right.

Where on the DL25 the fault is marked is decided by the cause or the effect of a fault.

  • Some faults will always be marked a certain way.
  • Kerb it while parking and it is always a steering fault.
  • Other faults will be recorded according to what the DE views as the cause of the fault.
  • This is one of the many skills of a driving examiner. 

Bearing in mind that sometimes it is a matter of opinion. What can we do to influence the examiner.

Your Pupil:

  • Are they ready
  • Washed and brushed looking like they care about themselves
  • Make sure they don’t get lippy with the examiner
  • Make sure they can do the SMTM questions well as this makes a good first impression

Your Car:

  • Also washed and brushed
  • A clean car is extra important in these COVID-19 times
  • Smelling okay with no dog or other odours
  • If you are a big and or sweaty bloke use a beaded seat
  • It is not nice to sit in a damp seat as you will find out with your pupils during the summer.
  • Properly fuelled
  • No warning lights coming on
  • Lights and everything checked
  • L plates front and back on the drivers side of the car
  • A stick on interior rear view mirror


  • Make sure you bring a consistent high standard of pupil to the test
  • One bad one will be remembered a lot longer than a brilliant one
  • Make sure they can drive safely