Driver's Prep - Free DMV tests

North Carolina FREE DMV Test & Permit Practice

This North Carolina DMV Practice Test
  Questions on each test: 25
  Question pool: 500+
  Type of test: Random multiple-choice



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North Carolina Road Sign Test

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Take another road rules test!

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North Carolina Road Sign Test

#1. In which situation are you allowed to pass a school bus?

You must not attempt to pass the school bus until the mechanical stop signal is withdrawn, the flashing red lights are turned off and the bus has started to move.


#2. The area in the center of this road is used for:

On certain multi-lane highways, a special center lane is reserved exclusively for two-way left-turn movements in both directions. The two-way left-turn lane must not be used for passing another vehicle or for the purpose of merging into traffic.

These lanes are marked on each side by a solid yellow and dashed yellow line.

You may only drive a short distance in the lane.


#3. When you come to a railroad crossing, it is important to:

Never stop on railroad tracks. There may be a DO NOT STOP ON TRACKS sign, to remind you not to stop on the railroad track for any reason.


#4. One reason night driving is more dangerous than daytime driving is:

Night driving is more dangerous than daytime driving because:

  • You cannot see as well.
  • There are more impaired drivers on the road.
  • Drivers tend to be tired and less alert.
  • A driver can be blinded by the headlights of oncoming vehicles.
  • Dirty windshields and poor lights can cause problems for some drivers.

#5. When should you share the lane and drive beside a motorcyclist?

Motorcycles are entitled to the full width of their lane. To pass a motorcycle, you must change lanes and pass in the same manner as you would for a larger motor vehicle. Always give the motorcyclist the same right of way consideration as you would for the driver of any other vehicle.


#6. You must use extra caution when approaching a pedestrian using a white cane because:

A white cane is used by many people who are blind or visually impaired, both as a mobility tool and as a courtesy to others.


#7. Passing is always unsafe and usually illegal:

  I. At intersections in cities and towns
  II. At crosswalks where a vehicle has stopped to allow people to cross the street

Places where passing is always unsafe and usually illegal:

  • At intersections in cities and towns or at railroad crossings.
  • At marked intersections in rural areas.
  • On any curve or hill where the driver cannot see at least 500 feet ahead.
  • Wherever there is a solid yellow line in the driver’s lane.
  • Wherever there is a double-solid yellow line.
  • At intersections or crosswalks where a vehicle has stopped to allow people to cross the street.
  • Wherever the driver cannot see that the road is clear of traffic far enough ahead to pass safely.

#8. In North Carolina, you must use seat belts:

  I. When driving forward at any speed
  II. When backing a vehicle

Seat belts are required when the vehicle is in forward motion on a street or highway, not when backing up.


#9. Which is true about large trucks?

  I. The driver of a truck can see the road better than the driver of a car
  II. Large trucks require additional turning room

Large trucks require additional turning room because their rear wheels do not follow the path of their front wheels. When following a tractor-trailer, observe its turn signals before trying to pass. Many motorists falsely assume that truckers can see the road better because they sit twice as high as the driver of a car. However, truckers still have serious blind spots.


#10. If you have mechanical trouble and must stop beside the road, you can show others you need help by doing what?

Turn on the emergency flashers and parking lights. If you need help, tie a white cloth to the left door handle or the radio aerial and raise the hood of the vehicle. Stand off the road and away from the vehicle.


#11. Which light indicates that you can make an unprotected left turn?

A flashing yellow arrow means that left turns are allowed, but first you must yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians. You must carefully determine that there is an adequate gap in the oncoming traffic and ensure that there are no pedestrians in your path before making your turn.

This is known as an unprotected turn.


#12. Where do most traffic crashes occur?

Crashes occur most frequently at intersections, and they are considered the most dangerous places on a street or highway. More than one-third of fatal traffic crashes involving motor vehicles occur at intersections.


#13. The Driver's Handbook lists tips to prevent drowsy driving. One of these tips is:

Some tips to prevent drowsy driving:

  • Get a full night of rest before driving.
  • Stop regularly when driving long distances.
  • Try to set a limit of 300-400 miles of driving per day.
  • Avoid taking medications that cause drowsiness.
  • If you are tired and in danger of falling asleep, stop.

#14. When is a good time to check and adjust your mirrors?

You should always check and adjust your seat and mirrors before you start to drive. You should have clear vision in all directions, all controls should be within reach, and at least one-third of the steering wheel should be between your hands. Head restraints should be adjusted so the head restraint contacts the back of your head.

Always fasten your seat belt and make sure all passengers are correctly using seat belts, child safety restraints, or booster seats. Also remember to lock the doors. Locking reduces the risk of doors opening during a sudden swerve, braking, or crash.


#15. If it starts to drizzle while you are driving, you should do which of the following?

  I. Turn on your parking lights
  II. Allow at least twice the normal following distance

Roads are more dangerous just after rain has begun to fall, especially if it has not rained for a while. For the first 10 to 15 minutes, rain combines with oil from asphalt and vehicles, and with dirt, dust, and rubber to create a slick surface. You should drive with extreme caution.

Stopping distances on slippery pavement increases from two to 10 times farther than on dry pavement, therefore, slow down and allow yourself at least twice the normal following distance.


#16. Unless otherwise posted, it is illegal to park within 15 feet of:

Never park within 15 feet of a fire hydrant or entrance to a fire station.


#17. Looking 10 to 15 seconds ahead on the roadway can help you avoid:

Good drivers try to see 10 to 15 seconds ahead on the roadway (about one city block). By looking ahead, you might avoid last minute moves such as sudden stops or quick lane changes.


#18. If your vehicle starts to skid or hydroplane, you should:

  I. Slow down gradually
  II. Turn the steering wheel sharply to keep control

Take your foot off the accelerator. Slow down gradually. Do not apply the brakes. Turn the front wheels only enough to keep them pointed in the direction of the skid and the direction you want to go. Be prepared for a secondary skid in the opposite direction.


#19. Which of the following is correct?

  I. Use low beams when approaching another driver from behind at night
  II. Use high beams when driving in fog

If you must drive in fog, then drive slowly and use your low beam headlights. The light from high beams will reflect back and cause glare. Never drive with just your parking lights.

Use your low beam headlights when it rains.


#20. With a valid class C license, you may drive:

  I. A single unit vehicle weighing 26,000 lbs.
  II. A vehicle towing another vehicle with a combined weight of 36,000 lbs.

With a class C license you may drive a vehicle with a GVWR of less than 26,001 pounds. A Class B license is required to operate any single vehicle that is exempt from CDL requirements with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, and any such vehicle towing a vehicle with a GVWR not in excess of 10,000 pounds.


#21. Your car's exhaust contains carbon monoxide, which:

Carbon monoxide is an invisible gas that has no smell, taste or color but is poisonous, even deadly.

Do not leave your car running in a closed garage and be careful during winter months. Snow can block a car’s exhaust pipe, and warming up a car can cause carbon monoxide to back up into the car.


#22. If there is a stop sign and a stop line painted across the pavement at intersection, you must:

When a stop sign, traffic light, flashing light or other traffic-control device requires a vehicle to stop at an intersection, the driver must stop at the appropriately marked stop line. If there is no stop line or marked crosswalk, the driver must stop before entering the intersection where he or she has a view of the intersecting street.


#23. Drinking any amount of alcohol is likely to:

  I. Improve your awareness of danger
  II. Give a false sense of confidence

Alcohol gives you false confidence. You may take greater risks because you think your driving is better than it really is.


#24. A second conviction of Driving While Impaired (DWI) within three years, will result in a revocation of your license for:

Second conviction of Driving While Impaired (DWI) within three years, will result in a mandatory revocation of your driver license for a period of four years.

North Carolina is known as one of the toughest states on DWI offenders and DMV wants you to understand the consequences of driving under influence.


#25. When asked by an officer at a traffic stop, a driver must:

Under State law, you are required to identify yourself and provide your drivers license and registration for the vehicle. After establishing identification, you may choose whether or not to verbally respond to additional questions.

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North Carolina DMV Written Knowledge Test
  Number of questions on exam: 25 questions
  Passing score: 80 percent
  Correct answers to pass: 20
  Allotted time to complete test: No limit
  Wait time before retest: 1 day

North Carolina Practice Tests

This practice test focuses on North Carolina road rules, traffic laws, and safe driving. It has 25 questions and matches the second part of your written knowledge examination for a permit or full driver’s license.

When you apply for a North Carolina driver license or learner’s permit, you must pass an examination with two tests.

  A road sign identification test.
  A written knowledge test about rules and laws.

The first, known as the roads signs test, will check your understanding of common regulatory and warning signs. You must identify 12 signs by color and shape and provide an explanation of each. You can practice for the road sign identification test here: NC Road Sign Practice Test

North Carolina Road Sign Test

The second part of your examination is the tricky one. It has 25 questions about rules and laws with a passing score of 80% (20 correct answers).

The Question Format

The purpose of this practice test is to help you verify your knowledge and level of readiness for the exam. But it also helps you understand what kind of questions you are likely to see on the test and the question format use.

Like all DMV tests in United States, it is a multiple-choice test, mainly with four alternatives.

Nowadays, only one alternative is correct.

Look at these two questions:

Question 1: Which of the following statements about horns and sirens is/are correct?

  • A. Every licensed motor vehicle must have a horn.
  • B. Only law enforcement and emergency vehicles may have sirens.
  • C. Both A and B.
  • D. Neither A nor B.

Question 2: Which of the following statements about horns and sirens is/are correct?
I. Every licensed motor vehicle must have a horn.
II. Only law enforcement and emergency vehicles may have sirens.

  • A. I only
  • B. II only
  • C. Both I and II.
  • D. Neither I nor II.

Perhaps you don’t spot the difference right away, but in the old example (Question 1) C. Both A and B. is a correct and the best choice. But only the last choice (D) is incorrect. In other words, a poor test question and unfortunately still common in other states.

In the new version of the test (Question 2), you must evaluate two statements. Again, both can be correct, like in this case. But the choices are different. You need to decide if each statement is correct or not. You have one choice that says that only the first statement is correct, one that says that only the second one is correct, and one that says that both are correct or incorrect.

Not two answers can be correct in this version of the question.

Expect at least a handful of questions in this format on your test.

We help you pass your DMV exam

How to Study for the Test

Always start by getting the latest version of the Driver Handbook. Get it from your nearest DMV office or download from .

Use the handbook to learn all the facts for your driver examination. Everything on your test is drawn from this handbook.

Be prepared for questions about laws and what will happen if you break the law, especially the consequences for Driving While Impaired (DWI). North Carolina DMV also places emphasis on how to safely share the road with pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vehicles.

You are unlikely to pass the test without a good understanding of the contents of the handbook.

The handbook should also be read by the person who will be your supervising driver, like a parent, to reinforce safe and defensive driving techniques when you practice driving later on.

Use the practice test as a supplement to the handbook, not instead of it. Practice tests work best if you use them together with the handbook.

Remember, every question on North Carolina DMV test is drawn from the official North Carolina Driver Handbook issued by North Carolina DMV. If you want to prepare for the examination, you should always read the handbook.

Read more: Drivers Prep Help You Ace your Learners Permit Test .

Study - How to pass the DMV test

How Long Should You Study for the DMV Test?

A general recommendation is to start studying at least two weeks ahead of the examination.

Don’t try to read everything at once. The more you spread your study session, the better your long-term recollection of facts. After all, you want this knowledge to stick. Not knowing some basic traffic rules can have serious consequences when you hit the road.

While last-minute cramming can help you pass a test, you won’t remember the material for long.

Let’s say it will take you about 20 hours to learn everything you need to know. With 20 hours it is better to study 2 hours every second day over three weeks than to study 20 hours during the last couple of days.

Mixing is also a great study tactic. Spend time reading the handbook, taking practice tests, and talk about driving rules. If you are taking a driving class, engage in the discussions and be active. If not, find someone you can discuss traffic rules with. It will help you more than you think.

What You Must Know about the North Carolina DMV Test

It is a closed book test. You cannot use books, papers, or electronic devices when taking the test.

North Carolina DMV does not offer online tests from home; you must take your knowledge examination at a DMV office. Appointments are currently mandatory.

The passing score on the North Carolina DMV rules test is 80%. You must correctly answer 20 of the 25 questions.

If you fail your first attempt, you can take the test again the next business day, if there are available appointments. There is no fee for re-testing.

The test has no time limit, which means that you have plenty of time to carefully read all questions and answers. Pace yourself to avoid unnecessary mistakes.

The test is available in some additional languages, including Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Spanish. If you have trouble understanding English, you should let someone help you to make sure you can get a test in a language you understand.

If you have difficulty reading, DMV may offer an oral test. Make sure you contact your local DMV office in advance.

Who Must Pass the North Carolina DMV Written Test?

  First-time Applicants

For an original NC learner’s permit or driver license of any type, all first-time applicants must pass a written knowledge test.

  Drivers who let their license expire more than one year.

  Drivers who had their license revoked.

If your license was revoked, you must wait until the revocation period has ended before you can re-apply for a North Carolina driver’s license. You must pass all tests again before DMV issues a new license.

  Drivers with a foreign driver’s license.

Drivers who move to North Carolina and hold a license from a country other than United States or Canada, must pass the knowledge test as part of the application process.

The N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles

Is the North Carolina DMV Written Test Hard?

North Carolina DMV does not record or release failure rates on the knowledge test. It is only suggested that the more than one third fail the written exam, making the difficulty level on the exam “moderate”.

Most applicants, however, pass the road sign identification test, which is generally considered easy.

Study and Learn More

COVID 19 Alert

N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles office

In North Carolina, you must make an appointment for services that need to be completed in a driver license office: Make an appointment!

It is also possible to take the Motorcycle Skills Tests at limited office locations – but NOT the road skills tests for a passenger vehicle.


  1. This helped a lot. thank you for sharing.

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