Select Page

As a commercial truck driver, the most important thing you can do to ensure your safety and the safety of others on the road is to conduct a thorough pre-trip inspection before hitting the highway, but How to Remember Pre Trip Inspection CDL. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) mandates that all commercial drivers must inspect their vehicles every day before they start driving. This includes checking various vehicle parts, such as brakes, lights, tires, steering wheel, etc.

It can be challenging for some drivers to remember all the steps to conduct a practical pre-trip inspection. That’s why we’ve put together this article outlining seven easy-to-follow steps to help you remember everything you need to check during your pre-trip inspection.

Overview of Pre-Trip Inspection:

As a novice driver, one of the most important things you can do before hitting the road is to conduct a pre-trip inspection. This process involves thoroughly checking your vehicle’s interior and engine compartment for any signs of damage or malfunctions that could compromise your safety on the road. Pre-trip inspections are mandatory under federal law; failing to complete them could result in fines or legal consequences.

The degree of involvement required for a pre-trip inspection will vary depending on the type of vehicle you drive, but generally speaking, it should take roughly 15 minutes to complete. During this time, you must inspect everything from your headlights and taillights to your brakes and steering system. You’ll also want to check your tire pressure and tread depth and look for leaks or other issues under the hood.

How to Remember Pre Trip Inspection CDL:

How to Remember Pre Trip Inspection CDL

As a commercial driver, you ensure your vehicle is in good condition before hitting the road. The pre-trip inspection CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) is essential in ensuring your safety and that of other road users. apply safety features like b-mode, RSA(road sign assist), sway warning, etc. Remembering this process can be challenging, but you can make it easier with a few tips and tricks.

The first step to remembering the pre-trip inspection CDL is by breaking it down into smaller parts that you can focus on individually. You could start by inspecting the vehicle’s exterior, then move on to checking under the hood, inside the cab, and finally inspecting any trailers or cargo being transported. By doing this, you’ll be able to remember each part of the inspection quickly.

Another effective way of remembering the pre-trip inspection CDL is by creating a checklist that outlines all areas inspected during this process.

  • Repeat
  • Take a recording of someone else
  • Smaller Components
  • Let your imagination go wild.
  • Locate the truck
  • Make use of the list
  • Use Images/Diagrams


As a commercial driver, it is essential to remember the pre-trip inspection process. The Department of Transportation requires drivers to conduct a thorough inspection before operating their vehicles. With so many things to check, it’s easy to forget crucial details that could lead to safety issues on the road.

To help you, we have put together some tips for remembering your pre-trip inspection. First and foremost, make a checklist and go through each item systematically – from top to bottom and left to right. This will ensure that you don’t miss anything important.

Another helpful tip is to use mnemonic devices like acronyms or rhymes for each vehicle part you need to inspect.

Take a recording of someone else:

Taking a recording of someone else can be an effective way to remember the pre-trip inspection for a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This method involves finding someone knowledgeable and experienced in pre-trip inspections and recording them as they go through the process. The resulting audio or video file can then be repeatedly played, allowing the listener to memorize each inspection step.

When choosing someone to record, finding someone thorough and familiar with the pre-trip inspection requirements is crucial\. This could be a certified CDL instructor or an experienced driver performing inspections for years. Ensure they are willing to take their time and explain each step in detail while performing the inspection.

Smaller components:

These smaller components include windshield wipers, mirrors, and lights. Windshield wipers should be checked for wear and tear and proper functionality. Mirrors should be adjusted to provide maximum visibility and checked for damage or cracks. Lights should also be inspected to ensure they are working correctly and are not damaged.

Other small components to check during a pre-trip inspection include tires, brakes, and hoses. Tires must have adequate tread depth and no signs of damage or excessive wear. Brakes must function correctly without any leaks or other issues.

Let your imagination go wild:

As a commercial truck driver, performing a thorough pre-trip inspection before hitting the road is crucial. This essential task ensures that your vehicle is in excellent condition and ready to handle the rigors of the journey ahead. While some drivers may find this process tedious, others view it as an opportunity to flex their creativity and problem-solving skills. Letting your imagination go wild during pre-trip inspections can help you identify potential issues that are often overlooked.

One way to make your pre-trip inspection more engaging is by approaching each element with curiosity and an open mind. Instead of simply ticking off boxes on a checklist, think outside the box and consider what could go wrong if certain parts or systems fail while on the road.

Locate the truck:

During a pre-trip inspection, you must locate various parts of the truck, such as the engine, transmission, drive shaft, fuel tanks, and exhaust system. Checking each of these components ensures that they are secure and functioning correctly. You also need to inspect exterior features like mirrors, lights, tires and wheels for signs of damage or wear and tear.
To remember all those necessary items during a pre-trip inspection, CDL drivers should prepare by creating a checklist. A checklist can help confirm everything has been inspected before hitting the road.

Make use of the list:

A pre-trip inspection should be conducted before every short or long trip. The inspection is meant to ensure that the vehicle is safe for operation and that all components are in good working condition. Checking items such as brakes, tires, lights, mirrors, and steering systems will help prevent accidents on the road.

CDL drivers can avoid overlooking critical aspects of their vehicles by using a list or checklist for their pre-trip inspection. This saves time and ensures safety for both themselves and other motorists.

Use Images/Diagrams:

As a commercial driver, performing pre-trip inspections is essential to your job. A thorough inspection ensures that the vehicle is in good working condition and helps prevent accidents on the road. , remembering all the steps involved can be challenging. One effective way to make it easier is to use images and diagrams.

Visual aids are powerful memory tools that engage our visual and spatial memory. When you see an image or diagram, your brain creates a mental picture you can recall later more easily than reading text or listening to instructions. For example, if you’re trying to remember the order of the components in an air brake system, studying a diagram will help reinforce your understanding better than reading a description.
Many online resources provide pre-trip inspection checklists with accompanying images and diagrams for each step.

Conclusions: How to Remember Pre Trip Inspection CDL

A pre-trip inspection is crucial to safe and efficient driving. Following the seven steps outlined in this article can help CDL drivers remember each inspection component and ensure their vehicle is in good condition before hitting the road. Regular practice and attention to detail can make pre-trip inspections second nature, allowing drivers to identify potential issues and prevent breakdowns on their routes. By prioritizing safety and consistently performing thorough inspections, we can all contribute to safer roads for ourselves and others. So, review these steps, conduct regular inspections, and confidently drive, knowing your vehicle is ready for the journey ahead.


Which of the following is not part of the pre-trip inspection?

The pre-trip inspection includes checking for proper fluid levels, brakes, and tires.

How often must a walk-around pre-trip inspection be conducted?

A walk-around pre-trip inspection is typically conducted every 3 months but can be conducted as often as every 6 months.