The latest round of changes to Irish Driving Test were implemented on, Feb.14th 2005, as part of a chain of E.U.Directives.
Test Candidates are now required to have a basic level of mechanical knowledge, which any good professional School of Motoring would have been teaching from day one in any event.
The car of today is a very different beast compared with its grandparents and any driver, young or old, should have a range of skills that enable them to identify problems and take necessary remedial action.
The Driving Examiner will select three questions at random from a list of technical aspects which will include opening bonnet. While it is not exactly space technology, ability to identify this range of equipment and to describe how individual checks would be performed, does require some thought and a little practise. Some of equipment will have accompanying warning lights on instrument panel some does not, so some of requirements will already be known (hopefully!)
Candidates will be asked to explain how they would perform checks on three out of following list:- Engine Oil: Coolant: Steering: Brakes: Horn: Indicators: Lights: Tyres: Reflectors: Windscreen washer.
The under Bonnet checks relate to:-Power Steering Fluid; Brake Fluid; Engine Oil; Engine Coolant; and Windscreen washer Fluid. In a newer car all of these pieces of equipment are easily identifiable by coloured tops to various reservoirs, which have an easily recognisable icon painted or etched into them. The location of these five essential items does vary a little from model to model so if you have changed your car in lead up to Driving Test then spend a few minutes double checking.
In event of very bad weather (rarely a feature of Irish climate) it is unlikely that Examiner will ask for bonnet to be opened but since he or she has already spent time outside car, checking brake lights and indicators and paperwork, itís not impossible. If he or she is a fisherman or a boating enthusiast then a few drops of rain will be water off a duckís back. Just keep an eye on weather and ensure that your heater or demist controls are pre-set .Two persons in car during rainy weather will mist up windows extremely quickly and candidate needs to be equally deft with controls.