Motorcycle Manual in Pennsylvania

SUMMARY: Pennsylvania Motorcycle Manual

The motorcycle manual explains how to safely and legally operate a motorcycle in Pennsylvania. You'll find the information you need to pass the learner's permit test and gain the skills needed to get your motorcycle license.

Continue reading to find out more about the motorcycle manual in Pennsylvania.

What's in the Motorcycle Manual?

When you apply for a motorcycle license in Pennsylvania, you'll be tested on your knowledge of motorcycle riding rules and your actual riding skills.

The PA Department of Transportation's (PennDOT) Motorcycle Operator Manual (Form PUB 147) is a good place to start when learning to ride a motorcycle.

Before You Ride

The motorcycle manual provides detailed information about basic preparation for safe riding, including proper safety equipment.

You'll also learn a little about choosing, buying, and learning about your bike.

Safe Operation

Most of the PA motorcycle manual is dedicated to the safe and legal operation of a motorcycle.

It covers basic skills like how to shift gears to how to safely pass other vehicles, as well as less common circumstances, like avoiding objects on the road and collisions.

You'll also learn tips that increase safety, such as making yourself more visible to other drivers.

Alcohol, Drugs, and Other Dangers

The effects of alcohol and drugs on motorcycle operation and motorcycle riders are explained in manual.

Preventative advice is also provided, as well as information about riding when you are tired.

Motorcycle Learner's Permit

You must get a Class M learner's permit before obtaining your full motorcycle license in Pennsylvania.

You will need to pass the PennDOT motorcycle knowledge test to get your permit.

With the permit, you can:

  • Ride only during the day (from sunrise to sunset).
  • NOT have passengers, except for a licensed instructor.

If you are younger than 18 years old, you MUST meet the following requirements BEFORE you can get your full motorcycle license:

  • Hold the permit for a minimum of 6 months.
  • Complete 65 hours of supervised motorcycle operation.
  • Complete the Motorcycle Safety Program Basic Rider Course (which includes 10 hours of supervised riding and 5 hours of classroom instruction).

When you're ready to take a riding skills test and/or you complete other applicable permit requirements, you can apply for your motorcycle license.

Knowledge Test

The written knowledge exam asks you questions about the information found within the PA motorcycle manual.

By reading and reviewing the manual, you can learn the safe riding practices and traffic laws covered on the test.

To enhance your learning and build confidence before you take the test, you can take motorcycle license practice tests or use other test prep tools.

Motorcycle License in Pennsylvania

You'll get your Class M (motorcycle) license after you pass a skills test.

Your license may have restrictions based on the type of motorcycle you use for your test.

You may be restricted to the type of motorcycle (HPs, number of wheels etc) you are licensed to drive based on what kind of motorcycle you used during your skills test.

NOTE: If you enroll in the PennDOT Motorcycle Safety Program, your skills test will given as part of the course. You DO NOT have to go to a PennDOT office to take your exam.

You can make an appointment for your test at a PennDOT office.

Read the motorcycle manual for a list of the skills you'll be required to demonstrate during your test.

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Insurance for Your PA Motorcycle

Your motorcycle must be insured in Pennsylvania, just like any other motor vehicle.

The minimum liability insurance required in PA is:

  • $15,000 for injuries or death of 1 person.
  • $30,000 for injuries or deaths of multiple people.
  • $5,000 for property damage.

Read more about insurance option on our page about Motorcycle Insurance Minimum Requirements in PA.

Stay Safe When Riding Your Motorcycle

Taking a motorcycle safety course can help you stay safe on the roads and avoid an accident. Find a course near you by picking your location below.

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