PreTrip Wha?

Topic 27261 | Page 1

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Mel 's Comment
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Hey all! I'm in school currently part time. Tuesdays and Wednesday from 7am - 10pm. I've learned a ton already and I'm absolutely loving it. I went into the school already having my CLP and DOT medical. So, straight to the yard for me. I'm really having a rough time with pre-trip. I got everything under the hood, but it took me a good 2 weeks. I'm assuming it's because I'm just not in front of the truck everyday to have visual. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips to make this a bit easier? I know its practice practice practice like anything else, but pre-trip is just rough for me. My test is January 20th and I'm kinda starting to freak out a little. Thanks a ton in advance!

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

CLP:

Commercial Learner's Permit

Before getting their CDL, commercial drivers will receive their commercial learner's permit (CLP) upon passing the written portion of the CDL exam. They will not have to retake the written exam to get their CDL.

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
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Make flash cards for all the systems and have someone test you. That worked best for me.

Mel 's Comment
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Do you add pictures to the flashcards?

Make flash cards for all the systems and have someone test you. That worked best for me.

000's Comment
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PDF: Daniel's Pre-trip Inspection (Main Version)

Here's a thread that'll help

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

Susan D. 's Comment
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I second BobCats suggestion of flash cards. That 2 evenings a week makes it tough to get the repetition you probably need to get it down.

The cdl school I attended made up folders that had photos and the exact verbiage that the DOT officer expected to hear. It was 20 pages or so because the pictures were fairly big. Every day at class I'd get there early and just start pre tripping on my own. Then we (the very few serious students) started "grading " each other on our pre trip. I'd repeat this at the end of each day. At night before I fell asleep I'd read that folder out loud, put it up and go to sleep. That worked for me.. passed mine with flying colors.

It's a whole lot of repetition really. If you can adequately pretrip under the hood, that's the hardest part and if you can do one truck, you can do them all. Things might be in slightly different places, but a compressor is a compressor, its either belt or chain driven. A wheel is a wheel.. and there's 18, so lots of repetition. An axle is an axle.. generally 5 of those, so trust me, it's not that difficult.

A good list of pretrip items to check is also listed in a commercial vehicle atlas.

Get in the habit of performing your pretrip in exactly the same order every time, when you practice, say it out loud as you would with an examiner and physically touch each part as you describe it, so its obvious you know the various parts that you're checking and why you must check them.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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