Ontario’s G2 test is by no means an easy exam. On average, the G2 test has a pass rate of 50-60%, compared to 60-70% for the G test. That said, you can increase your chances of passing substantially if you know what the examiners are looking for – and where most students tend to slip up.
While you may think that parallel parking is the most difficult part of the G2 exam, it isn’t the most common reason for failing. Instead, it’s the compounding small mistakes that one can make while driving – such as not signaling, not checking blind spots, etc. – that tend to be the most common causes of failure.
In this article, we break down the top 5 reasons that lead to students failing their G2 road test:
1. Not checking your mirrors every 5-10 seconds
While driving, the Ministry of Transportation recommends checking your mirrors every 5 to 10 seconds. During the G2 test, it can be easy to get distracted with everything else you need to remember- such as maintaining the speed limit, watching out for other vehicles, and driving smoothly – that you can forget to check your mirrors consistently. Each time that you fail to check your mirrors every 5-10 seconds will unfortunately result in a points deduction on your test.
Even if you are checking your mirrors every 5-10 seconds, your examiner may not notice if your movements are not obvious enough for another person to see. For this reason, our driving instructors recommend turning your whole head slightly when checking your mirrors, rather than simply turning your eyes. If you turn your head, it’s far more likely that your examiner will know you’re checking your mirrors. Some students even bring a baseball cap to their exam, so that their movements are even more easy to notice.
2. Failing to check blind spots
Checking blind spots can be a life-or-death practice while driving. Every time you merge, make a turn, park, or otherwise substantially move your vehicle, you need to check your blind spot. There are blind spots on either side of your vehicle, generally covering the area where your backseat passengers would be sitting. Every time you make a turn, merge lanes, or park, remember to M.S.B. – check your mirror, signal, and check your blindspot. Making a turn without checking your blindspot can result in automatic failure in a G2 test.
3. Failing to signal
Signaling while driving is how you indicate your intention to other drivers. Have you ever been cut off on the highway by a driver that didn’t signal? If so, you can probably understand how dangerous turning, merging, or parking without signaling can be.
That said, because of the frequency with which you have to signal – literally every turn, lane merge, or parking maneuver – it can be easy to miss one now and then, especially if you’re a newer driver. Once again, M.S.B. is your saviour here – every time you need to move your vehicle, remember to check your mirror, signal, and then check your blindspot. Eventually, signaling will become second nature to you.
4. Making left-hand turns incorrectly
Left-hand turns, especially in major intersections, can be much more challenging than right-hand turns. When making a left-hand turn, there are several things you need to keep track of, such as vehicle positioning, signalling, pedestrians, and oncoming traffic. Making a mistake across any of these dimensions can result in you failing your G2 test, given the risk that an improper left-hand turn can pose to your life, and the lives of other drivers.
To make a left-hand turn properly, remember to signal, position yourself safely in the intersection with your wheels straight (not turned!), and keep an eye out for any oncoming traffic or pedestrians. If you start turning while a pedestrian has begun to cross the road, you put their life and your life in danger.
5. Winging it, and not taking lessons
The biggest mistake you can make on your G2 test, though, is failing to adequately prepare, and going in for the test without adequate preparation. The overall pass rate for the G2 is about 50-60% – and as this is an average, it includes the pass rate for students who took driving lessons (which tends to be in the 70-80% range) and the pass rate for students who didn’t take driving lessons (which tends to be in the 30-40% range).
Succeeding in your G2 test is just like going to the gym, or learning an instrument, in that you need to first learn how to properly perform a task, and then ensure you have sufficient time to practice it. Driving instructors can help with the first part – knowing what to do – but the second part, ensuring you have enough practice, is entirely up to you. Typically, we recommend having at least 30 hours of in-car practice before going for your G2 test – and the best way to structure this is 10 hours with an instructor, and 20 hours practicing on your own.
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