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Old 01-04-2017, 02:00 PM   #1
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Getting Licensed in NC for >26,000 GVWR MH

This is my first post to iRV2, and my apologies in advance because I didnít check all 512 pages of threads before starting this new one. If thereís a previous discussion please let me know.Background is that Iím a VA resident planning to move to NC this summer and then buying a MH (GVWR > 26,000) after a few months there.After hearing wrong info from three NC DMV offices that no special license is required for an RV (i.e. normal Class C license is OK), I got someone at DMV HQ in Raleigh to check the NC General Statutes and confirm with me that a non-commercial Class B license or higher is required to drive a >26,000 GVWR MH.Even a NC MH dealer told me theyíd been telling people for years that an ordinary Class C license is OK regardless of the MH weight.A road test in a Class B vehicle is required to get the non-commercial Class B license in NC.
My choices for getting a NC non-commercial Class B or higher license seem to be: 1) buy the MH in Virginia before I move (my VA license is OK for >26,000) and show up at the NC DMV to take the road test to get a NC drivers license in that MH (this early purchase alternative is not supported by my wife); 2) go to a CDL school ($2,700 for Class B) in VA before moving, and transfer the VA CDL when I arrive (no road test for transferring the CDL to NC Ė a CDL isnít required, but itís a higher license and will work); 3) Rent a Ryder or similar truck (GVWR > 26,000) on my VA license after I move, and take the NC road test in that to switch licenses from VA to NC; 4) if #3 isnít possible and I already got my NC Class C license, try to talk the senior examiner at the NC DMV office into allowing me to take the road test for a non-commercial Class B license in a rented truck thatís the same size as the >26,000 GVWR truck, but the GVWR actually is <26,000 (which would be legal on a NC Class C license).
Seems difficult for a NC resident with a Class C license to buy and legally drive a >26,000 MH. Anyone ever had to work their way though this Catch-22 where you canít drive a heavy MH without the proper license, but canít get the license without a vehicle to take the road test (not even considering learning how to handle it before the road test)?Any suggestions or comments regarding my list of (or any new) alternatives?
Thanks.
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:49 PM   #2
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Don't move to NC.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:09 PM   #3
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Just go take your test when you and DMV can schedule it.
Noone will know. They don't care either.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:12 PM   #4
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I took my road test for a Class B license in NC back in 2012. I doubt that anything has changed since then, but you might check. I visited the DMV office to inquire about the requirements for the test. I was told to study a portion of the CDL booklet pertaining to air brakes, etc and then come in anytime to take the written (computer) test. After passing that I could schedule the road test in my motor home. I specifically asked about how to get the motor home to the DMV office for the test. The license examiner just looked at me and said she didn't care how I got it there. If I were pulled over on my way there then I might be in trouble, but... (shrugged shoulders)
It might not be the same attitude at every DMV office.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:21 PM   #5
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Is there a learner's permit?
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nctox View Post
I took my road test for a Class B license in NC back in 2012. I doubt that anything has changed since then, but you might check. I visited the DMV office to inquire about the requirements for the test. I was told to study a portion of the CDL booklet pertaining to air brakes, etc and then come in anytime to take the written (computer) test. After passing that I could schedule the road test in my motor home. I specifically asked about how to get the motor home to the DMV office for the test. The license examiner just looked at me and said she didn't care how I got it there. If I were pulled over on my way there then I might be in trouble, but... (shrugged shoulders)
It might not be the same attitude at every DMV office.
As noted it might not be the same in every location but this is pretty much what I was told also. the examiner said no one would care how I got there but they might not be too happy with me driving away if I failed.

To answer - once you pass the written test, you can schedule and take the driving test. If you fail you get a learner's permit requiring a licensed driver to be with you - problematic since DW doesn't have a license either.

I have a friend who has a license who will go with me to take the driver's test just in case.

A few years ago my buddy took the driving test and was asked to start the rig, back up - move forward and that was it. Probably not so simple these days.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:35 PM   #7
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Thank you nctox. I think that's what I'll expect, but I worry less about a ticket than a collision and my insurance company tells me that I wasn't properly licensed, sooooo .... Still, though, what you experienced makes sense to me.

Gemert, I do not believe that there is a learners permit. I specifically asked about that. I said, who expects a teenager to drive a car for the first time when they take the road test? I was told there isn't, but, as I mentioned, I have received mostly incorrect info from DMV so far.

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Old 01-04-2017, 03:40 PM   #8
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I live in N.C. and I think you are really over thinking this. Don't stress over this, Like they told me with my American Tradition, DMV said your good. Sorry can't be of anymore help. I use a Class C. Good travels.
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Old 01-04-2017, 05:54 PM   #9
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Live in NC, and both wife and I have been thru this process, as well as a friend.

It's a non-CDL, class B endorsement you need.

The DMV call center doesn't necessarily know the rules, had to call a couple times to flush out the process, and I talked with a State Policeman that helped tremendously.

Not every DMV facility does this testing, you need to call to find out which facility does it. I live in Raleigh, and the DMV in Cary is the only one around here that has the licensed testers to perform the tests.

You need to go and get a learners permit first, to get it you need to pass a visual/sign test, and pass the 50 question computer test. Need to get at least 40 correct, and can postpone questions to the end if you don't know the answer. Once you get 40 correct the test is over, so you may never have to answer the couple you don't know. Study the CDL questions. They don't have a unique test for class B endorsements, you take the CDL test. Questions on air brakes, placards, everything on CDL. That gets you your learners permit, which makes you legal to drive......IF....you have someone with you who already has a class B or class A license. It's just like being a kid and 16 again, you need to have a licensed driver with you.

Go away and practice, and come back and take the driving test. You will now also need to show proof of you being on the insurance policy for the RV. You may be asked what licensed driver got you there, so I had a licensed friend show up and meet me there. I then was the proxy for my wife. Some testers ask, some don't.

You'll need to do a safety check walk around, explaining what you check and why you check it. They'll ask you to get inside and give you signals to prove all your lights are working. Inside you'll need to show the checks you perform inside before driving the coach (air brake tests, etc). They'll take you on a road test, which can last 20 mins to an hour. Can be on a highway, or city, or both. Perform emergency controlled stops, a panic stop, and both wife and I were asked to back up into a tight spot in their parking lot. They're really most interested in you learning to drive safely, and are very helpful with hints and tips along the way.

Then you get a new regular looking drivers license, but it will have a class B endorsement printed in the endorsement section, similar to how a motorcycle endorsement shows up on your license. It's a nominal charge, don't remember exactly, like 30 bucks or so.

The real challenge is how you are supposed to drive and get any experience, when you don't know anybody who is already legally licensed. I bought the coach, drove it a couple hours to get it home, and was driving it around town before meeting a fellow RV'er in the area.

I suspect you won't find a 'standard' for testing however. There were some commonalities in the three testers, but more differences. Who knows what the testers do in other areas of the state.

I came back the next day after getting my learners permit, and was questioned as to how I could possibly get any learning experience. Told them I'd driven Suburban's for years and have a couple trailers, so familiar with longer heavier vehicles....and more importantly, I wanted to get legal before driving cross country. Wife was in no hurry, went for her drivers test about a year after passing the written and getting her permit.

One last thing, you need to test in a vehicle of the same class that you are trying to get an endorsement in. So need a vehicle over the 26K, the tester checked my Vin sticker on door jamb. I believe that if you test with a gtr 26K non airbrake vehicle (if there is such a beast), that you'll get a class B endorsement, with a restriction for no air brakes.

One extra last thing as I read your post again..... They friend that showed up at DMV on my test day, actually took his test using a rented truck. He was buying his coach in Florida, and wanted to get licensed before driving it home. Need to make sure the rental has the correct weight and air brakes. Not sure how he was allowed to rent it without being licensed, didn't think to ask him about it.
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Old 01-05-2017, 06:15 AM   #10
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Kiawah,
Very helpful and complete information. Thank you very much for taking the time to respond
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Old 01-05-2017, 10:01 AM   #11
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Kiawah,
Very helpful and complete information. Thank you very much for taking the time to respond
OneG
No problem, glad to help. I know how frustrating it was trying to figure out the process.

What is printed on the back of the license is this:

Class B: Any single vehicle that is exempt from CDL requirements with a GVWR of 26,001 pounds or more, and any such vehicle towing a vehicle with a GVWR not in excess of 10,000 pounds.

Restrictions: NONE
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Old 08-14-2022, 07:24 PM   #12
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Class b endorsement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oneg View Post
This is my first post to iRV2, and my apologies in advance because I didnít check all 512 pages of threads before starting this new one. If thereís a previous discussion please let me know.Background is that Iím a VA resident planning to move to NC this summer and then buying a MH (GVWR > 26,000) after a few months there.After hearing wrong info from three NC DMV offices that no special license is required for an RV (i.e. normal Class C license is OK), I got someone at DMV HQ in Raleigh to check the NC General Statutes and confirm with me that a non-commercial Class B license or higher is required to drive a >26,000 GVWR MH.Even a NC MH dealer told me theyíd been telling people for years that an ordinary Class C license is OK regardless of the MH weight.A road test in a Class B vehicle is required to get the non-commercial Class B license in NC.
My choices for getting a NC non-commercial Class B or higher license seem to be: 1) buy the MH in Virginia before I move (my VA license is OK for >26,000) and show up at the NC DMV to take the road test to get a NC drivers license in that MH (this early purchase alternative is not supported by my wife); 2) go to a CDL school ($2,700 for Class B) in VA before moving, and transfer the VA CDL when I arrive (no road test for transferring the CDL to NC Ė a CDL isnít required, but itís a higher license and will work); 3) Rent a Ryder or similar truck (GVWR > 26,000) on my VA license after I move, and take the NC road test in that to switch licenses from VA to NC; 4) if #3 isnít possible and I already got my NC Class C license, try to talk the senior examiner at the NC DMV office into allowing me to take the road test for a non-commercial Class B license in a rented truck thatís the same size as the >26,000 GVWR truck, but the GVWR actually is <26,000 (which would be legal on a NC Class C license).
Seems difficult for a NC resident with a Class C license to buy and legally drive a >26,000 MH. Anyone ever had to work their way though this Catch-22 where you canít drive a heavy MH without the proper license, but canít get the license without a vehicle to take the road test (not even considering learning how to handle it before the road test)?Any suggestions or comments regarding my list of (or any new) alternatives?
Thanks.

I live in Illinois where you have to have a non cdl class b endorsement to drive a motor home 26,000 gvw or more. I'm sure half the people don't though ! But if you look close at your regular license, mine states it's only good up to 16,000 gvw. So knowing that, I knew I wouldn't be legal. It was a no brainer, wasn't going to take that chance with a cop that did know the law. You do have to take a written for your permit. I did not bring anybody with me for the practical test. They didn't ask, I didn't ask, just hopped in, he checked the GVW sticker, away we went. Might have taken 20 min. Cost was $5
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Old 08-15-2022, 07:07 PM   #13
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Moved to NC June 2021 from CT where all they cared was the taxes were paid. For me, NC was much the same.

Reading the rules it seems like a Class B is required. I asked at 3 different DMV locations - they all said if private / Non Commercial a regular license is fine. This was true for both 05 Phaeton and 12 King Aire. Insurance also did not care.

Even more redonkulous to me at least... I purchased my King Aire from a private seller in SC so on advice from NC DMV I stopped at SC DMV for temp tags to get the beast home. All they wanted was proof of insurance, did not check license or any other documentation.
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Old 08-17-2022, 12:55 PM   #14
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I added the class B to my license in Asheville about 4 years ago. I had driven diesel pushers for about 30,000 miles up to that point without the “proper” classification (almost everyone seems to ignore getting the class B, BTW).

I made an appointment and drove the coach there and was given the computer written test first, then went to the coach where the reviewer asked me how to check the air brake warnings by using the brake until the parking brake engaged and then I took the road test. Walked out with a printed temporary class B license and got the official one a couple weeks later. I had to do no external inspection but the reviewer did stand behind the coach and asked me to use brake and turn signals and then he got in and we did the air brake test.

He took me on a route that was supposed to be some city, some rural and I did come to an overpass with no height sign. I simply said to him that there was no height sign but I suspect he knew that the bridge was ok for the truckers et al who took the test. He smiled and confirmed that.

I was never asked about how I got there and was alone at the DMV, no discussion at all and I never was asked to acquire a learner permit.

I have driven diesel pushers about 55,000 miles at this point.

Hope this helps you a bit.
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