How Many Times Can You Take the CSLB Exam and How to Retake It?

Are you about to take the California Contractors State License Board (CSLB) exam and you’re freaking out because you think you might fail it? 

Or maybe you’re heading back from the exam right now, stunned to read a number on the screen that was less than the 72% needed to pass the exam?

Either way, you’ve got the intrusive thought that just won’t go away: how do I retake the CSLB exam? How many more chances have I got to pass? And how long do I have to take it again?

First off, take a deep breath. It’s going to be okay. We’re going to get through this, and you’re going to be a CSLB-certified contractor before you know it. Let’s dig in.


How Many Times Can You Take the CSLB Exam?

So how many times can you take the CSLB exam? 

As many times as you like, my friend.

That’s right – you can take the CSLB exam as many times as you like, with no exceptions. You can keep taking it until the sun goes out, theoretically!

Hopefully that should ease some of your anxiety. If you fail the CSLB exam the first time, no worries! You just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and get ready for round 2 with your mortal enemy.

That doesn’t sound so bad, does it? It’s not! There are some things to look out for, though, as re-taking the test can cause some problems with your plans and goals.


Retaking the CSLB Exam: The Facts

Here’s the steps you have to take to retake the CSLB exam.

  1. Wait for the mandatory waiting period: After an unsuccessful attempt, you must wait 3 weeks (21 days) before you can retake the exam. Use this time to study and better prepare yourself for the next round.
  2. Reschedule the exam: Once the waiting period has passed, you’ll need to reschedule your exam. You can do this by contacting the CSLB at (800) 321-CSLB (2752) or through your online account.
  3. Pay the exam retake fee: Each time you retake the exam, you’ll be required to pay a non-refundable fee. The retake fee to retake the CSLB exam is $60 per exam section (Law and Business or Trade).
  4. Receive a new test date: Once you’ve rescheduled and paid the retake fee, the CSLB will provide you with a new test date. Be sure to mark your calendar and show up early to the testing center on the day of the exam.


Insights from Official CSLB Resources

Here’s what the CSLB wants you to know about the CSLB exam – straight from the source! 

You can also check out our comprehensive guide about the CSLB exam to make sure you’re fully prepared for anything the test can throw at you.



Although there’s no limit to how many times you can take the CSLB exam, it’s crucial to learn from each and every failed attempt. Any failure is a chance for you to learn more and get that much closer to a passing grade.

The quickest way to passing the CSLB exam is just to be ready the first time around. CSLS provides courses tailor-made for contractors who want to just GET. IT. DONE. and get their licenses ASAP.