Top CDL FAQs

  • What is a CDL license?
    A commercial driver’s license (CDL) allows its holder to operate a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). CMV’s usually include trucks that transport passengers or property that weigh more than 26,0001 lbs.
  • What is the CDL exam?
    The CDL exam requires a written and skills test using the class of vehicle the driver intends to operate as a commercial driver.
  • Who takes the CDL exam?
    A commercial driver’s license is needed if the vehicle meets the following criteria (check your state CDL manual for state-specific requirements):
    • Class A: license class for combination vehicles with a GCWR of 26,001 or more pounds
    • Class B: license class for heavy straight vehicles with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds
    • Class C: license class for small vehicles with a GVWR of fewer than 26,001 pounds
    The CDL requires test takers to be at least 18. However, if transport includes crossing state lines, the driver must be 21.
  • What is on the CDL exam?
    The CDL exam is broken up into 3 sections: written, pre-trip inspection, and skills. The written test consists of 50 questions, with a required pass rate of 40 correct questions. The pre-trip vehicle inspection allows the driver to completely inspect both the inside and the outside of the vehicle.
  • How is the CDL exam scored?
    Tests are composed of a combination of true/false and multiple-choice questions and require a passing rate of 80%.
  • Where do you obtain a CDL license after passing the exam?
    Although each state has a slightly different process for getting a CDL, most states require you to go through the DMV to get a CDL license. Those who have just begun the CDL process can get a copy of the CDL application either online or at your local DMV. However, some states require you to fill out the CDL license application in person.