CDL General Knowledge Test Questions

To get a Commercial Drivers License, you need to pass the necessary knowledge tests and get a CDL Learner Permit with the class designation and endorsements that you need. The CDL general knowledge test is a written test intended to survey your capability and level of trucking knowledge and covers the material displayed in any CDL handbook. The test covers all parts of general trucking information required to obtain your CDL license including, driving securely, transporting cargo safely, and performing pre-trip vehicle inspections, air brakes, and passenger and combination vehicles. The knowledge test is accessible in 4 languages, however interpreters are not permitted during the exam:

  • English
  • Spanish
  • Russian
  • Serbian–Croatian

Every driver wishing to successfully acquire their CDL license must achieve an 80% passing score on the general knowledge test. The test fee covers 1 attempt at every knowledge test taken within 90 days of the receipt. Each test is taken at the local Department of Licensing and you should be prepared to spend around 90 minutes on this part of the test, while CDL endorsements take an hour. Please make sure you studied the CDL Manual before you take the test(s).

How Many Questions Are on the General Knowledge CDL Test?

The CDL general knowledge test is for all CDL applicants including Class A, B, and C CDL drivers. It consists of 50 questions and is a closed-book exam. Once you complete your CDL general knowledge test questions, you will receive your CDL learners permit and can hit the road. Your CLP is valid for 180 days from the date issued. Another 180 days, if you renew your CLP within 30 days of your original CLP expiring.

What Does the CDL General Knowledge Test Consist of?

There are three different tests most drivers will take when getting their CDL. Some are optional, depending on the class of CDL you need to get.

  1. General Written Knowledge Test: All applicants must take this test, regardless of the CDL class they are getting.
  2. Combination Test: Applicants who will be driving Class A tractor-trailer combinations will need to take this test. Other drivers do not need to take the combination test.
  3. Air Brakes Test: The air brakes test is optional, but must be taken by anyone who will be driving vehicles that require a CDL and use an air braking system.

The truck driving general knowledge test questions cover general trucking knowledge, cargo transport, driving safety, and pre-trip inspections.

Is the CDL General Knowledge Test Multiple Choice?

Yes, all tests are multiple choice. The truck driving general knowledge test consists of 50 multiple choice questions. In order to pass the general knowledge test, you need to pass with a score of 80% or higher. This means you need to get at least 40 out of the total 50 questions correct.

What Is On the General Knowledge Test?

The general knowledge test has 50 questions ranging from topics on driving safety and the dangers of driving under the influence, cargo transportation, pre-trip inspections, accident procedures, driver communications, railroad crossing procedures, and general trucking knowledge you need to know before you get behind the wheel.

Prepare for Your Exam

Taking the time you need to study for your CDL general knowledge test is important and will help you feel more prepared on the day of your test. You can prepare for your truck driving general knowledge test by using a CDL study guide for general knowledge and reviewing practice CDL general knowledge test questions through quizzes and the state CDL manual. With practice, you’ll be well on your way to getting your CDL and pursuing a rewarding career in the trucking industry.