Discussed A-Z about the private pilot written exam for an FAA Private Pilot License (PPL).
For student pilots, passing their FAA private pilot written exam is one of their biggest challenges. Understanding the whole nine years of the exam, you can prepare sufficiently for the upcoming event. The private pilot written exam is only an exam to test your knowledge by the FAA.
I understand taking an FAA exam is daunting. Indeed, you’ll have difficulty identifying the correct answer to a question as the questions are mainly unfamiliar. Unfamiliar questions don’t mean you don’t know the answers. Knowing at which points most student pilots struggle during an exam can help you pass the private pilot written exam on your first attempt. I posted this article to build your confidence and believe in yourself by discovering what to expect from the private pilot written exam in FAA.
Written exam cost of a Private Pilot License.
The registration cost for the private pilot written exam is 175 USD. This is the fee you pay during the registration in FAA.
Be optimistic that you can pass the exam on your first attempt. Taking the exam multiple times will cost you money.
Every time you register for the exam, you must pay the fee of 175 USD. Most student pilots are on a budget and give their best to pass the exam on their first attempt.
Exam format of private pilot written.
In this section, we discuss the key components and the structure of the private pilot written exam.
How many questions are on the FAA private pilot written exam?
The private pilot written exam has 60 multiple-choice questions and 2.5 hours. Two hours and 30 minutes are adequate for any well-equipped student pilot to complete and pass the exam.
You will see questions on various subjects relevant to aviation, airspace, aircraft operations, and aeronautics. There will be no absurd questions, so be confident you can pass the exam if you learn from the correct study materials and the test prep.
How long is the private pilot license written exam?
Difficulty level of the FAA private pilot written exam.
How hard is the private pilot license written exam?
Most student pilots pass the private pilot written exam on their first attempt. Few students require more than one attempt to pass their PPL written exam.
It means the FAA private pilot written exam is straightforward if you’re knowledgeable.
Those who fail the knowledge test on their first take never used private pilot study materials before the exam. Hence, reading the appropriate books and taking a ground school is crucial to make your private pilot written exam easy. You will inevitably pass the exam whether you self-study adequately or take classes in an actual ground school for your Private Pilot License.
The ground school alone is an aid to compile facts, but test preps make a significant difference. Use test preps to practice multiple-choice questions and answers similar to the FAA written exam for a private pilot license.
Individuals with poor aeronautical knowledge will find the PPL written exam difficult. Student pilots must:
- Allocate adequate time to study,
- Follow a process for reviewing;
- Give effort while taking the online pilot ground school;
- Practice answering as many of the prep questions as they can get their hands on.
Passing score for the pilot written exam.
The passing score for the FAA private pilot license written exam is 70%. You must answer 42 questions correctly to pass your private pilot knowledge tests, as the PPL knowledge test has 60 multiple-choice questions.
Answering 42 questions and passing the exam with a 70% score is not difficult. It’s common to see student pilots passing the exam with over 90% scores. If others can do it, you can do it too.
However, taking an exam is troublesome for students who are over 40. People over 40 want to get a private pilot license for a hobby. Such students haven’t taken any exams in a long time and find it difficult to answer questions under pressure within a time boundary. Such students must practice private pilot mock tests or use test preps.
Regardless of age, all student pilots use test preps to practice answering questions to achieve a better score instead of merely passing.
Students pass rate for private pilot written.
Failing and retaking the exam for a private pilot license.
Though the private pilot written exam is not so difficult, many student pilots fail on their first attempt.
Fortunately, there is no limit on how many times one can take the private pilot written exam as long as one pays the FAA examination fee. If you are reluctant to waste money on failed attempts, you must prepare well for your private pilot written exam.
PART 61 students may use an online private pilot ground school and test prep to master all aeronautical subjects. No one can learn everything about aviation at this stage of pilot training; therefore, the private pilot written exam is not overly complicated.
Similarly, if your CFI encourages you to take the exam, you are probably ready to pass your exam.
FAA requirements to take the private pilot license written exam.
A student pilot must have adequate aeronautical knowledge to take the private pilot written exam. Additionally, you must meet the following to be eligible for the private pilot exam:
- You must be 15 to take the private pilot written exam.
- You must present a valid government ID to verify your age before taking the exam.
- Being fluent in English is essential regardless of your nationality.
- A crucial requirement is to obtain an endorsement from a certified flight instructor to take the private pilot written exam.
After completing the ground classes, the CFI will take tests to check your aeronautical knowledge. Once the CFI is satisfied with the student’s performance, the CFI will endorse the student for the private pilot written exam.
PART 61 student pilots can enroll in an online private pilot ground school to obtain an endorsement. The FAA accepts both traditional ground school and online ground school endorsements. The endorsements can be a certificate or logged and signed by your CFI in your flight logbook.
Things you bring to your written exam.
You must bring a valid ID with you to take the exam. It will help during the exam if you get the following:
- E6B Flight Computer (Manual or Electronic)
- Small electronic calculator.
The written exam is the same as the Private Pilot Knowledge test.
Scheduling for an FAA private pilot written exam.
How to schedule for private pilot written exam?
Can you take the FAA private pilot written exam online?
No, you can’t take the FAA private pilot written exam online. You must attend the testing centers to take the exam. You can use this link to find out the closest test center. There are many testing centers across the United States, so finding one close to you won’t be trouble.
Selecting a date and venue to take the pilot exam.
Where to take the pilot exam? There is a designated location to take your private pilot written exam. To find the location nearest to you, Visit: https://faa.psiexams.com/faa/login.
You can register for the exam at your nearest location using your postal code.
Reasons to take private pilot written exam before flight training.
When should you take the private pilot written exam?
It would be best to take the private pilot written exam whenever you believe you can pass it and are confident about your intellect.
However, I recommend that everyone take the written exam as early as possible. After you finish your private pilot ground school and have the endorsement, take the exam.
Studying and passing the exam before beginning flight training indeed helps student pilots in flight training. There are some matters about the airplane that are best learned beforehand. During an actual flight, you won’t have time to experiment with it. Thus, it’s best to know how some things occur and how to handle them while studying theory.
That way, you’ll be safe in the sky and better grasp the subject by practicing. Therefore, studying and passing the exam after completing ground school is a wise choice. Individuals must be at least 15 to take the FAA private pilot knowledge exam.
You can get an endorsement from a CFI before you are 15, but to register for the FAA PPL examination, you must be at least 15. The FAA requires an identification card or Passport to verify your age.
One must be at least 16 to get a student pilot license and 17 to get a private one. The FAA has structured everything for students to take the private pilot written exam by 15 and get a personal pilot license by 17 before the written exam expires.
How long is a private pilot written exam good for?
A private pilot written exam is valid for two years. From the day you get your FAA private pilot written exam results, you can count 24 months to determine your exam’s validity.
Suppose you took your private pilot’s written exam, and 24 months have passed. You won’t be eligible for a private pilot check ride unless you retake and pass the private pilot written exam again.
You must register and take the FAA written exam again to get your private pilot license. However, it’s rare for student pilots to spend 24 months only to get a private pilot license. Your aim should be to obtain a private pilot license in six months.
Self-studying tips for the private pilot written exam.
The FAA private pilot written exam is not different from any other exam. However, it’s common to see private pilot trainees of all ages, and many take exams after years. Thus, following these tips is crucial for student pilots of all ages:
- Remember that the FAA private pilot knowledge test has 60 multiple-choice questions;
- Each question has three choices;
- The exam lasts 2.5 hours, and you have 2.5 minutes to answer each question correctly.
- Prepare well for the exam and be wise while taking the exam.
You can follow this study guide for the private pilot license written exam to prepare best. Also, remember the following tips:
- Don’t spend time on the questions you can’t answer;
- First, finish answering the questions that you find content;
- Next, come back to the difficult questions;
- Answering easy questions will consume less time. Therefore, you will have extra time to think and answer difficult questions.
- Even for the most unfamiliar question, you can analyze and answer.
Typically, there is always one choice out of three questions that you can immediately eliminate.
Eliminate the most apparent, wrong option; you will have only two remaining choices.
If you follow all the steps in this self-study guide for the private pilot written exam, I pledge you will pass your FAA written exam with over 90% marks.
How long does it take to study for the private pilot written exam?
If you’re a dedicated student, you can complete studying for the private pilot written exam in a month. A ground school for the private pilot license is typically for a month. Online private pilot ground schools vary from 20 hours to 40 hours long.
Thus, if you take the ground school and use test preps to examine your knowledge, you can be prepared for the FAA private pilot written exam in less than a month.
Unless you take months to study without effort, you’ll spend months studying for the private pilot written exam. Plan to dedicate time daily to study for the exam, and you can see excellent results.