I've been seeing a few weaknesses show up on several check rides. Interestingly enough, it doesn't matter if is a private, commercial or CFI ride these are common problems among all.
1. Knowing how to properly lean an engine. Refer to the POH or the Engine manufactures manual. If the airplane has an EGT, know how to use that
2. Figuring pressure and density altitude. Performance charts use either pressure and/or density altitude to come up with correct performance numbers.
3. Cross wind landings
4. Short field landings. Several applicants have forced the airplane to the ground by pushing the yoke forward during the flare. At best the airplane landings on all 3 wheels. At worst the airplane porpoises and the nose wheel collapses. If it looks like you will over fly your spot, go-around!
5. Clearing turns. This is a special emphasis area in the PTS. One Initial CFI applicant didn't preform any clearing turns. That right, NONE! A Commercial applicant only did one clearing turn during the entire ride. We did 1 clearing turn for 7 or 8 maneuvers.
6. Not using Carb heat correctly. Refer to the aircraft POH. If you're flying on auto fuel be advised that auto fuel increases the chance of carb ice. To properly use carb heat a pilot must apply it BEFORE reducing the power out of the normal operating range. Note to Robinson Helicopter pilots, the POH now wants you to use FULL carb heat during engine warm up.
So there's the latest problem areas. Please take some time and make sure these areas are ironed out before taking the check ride.