The MOT Test Explained

Whether you have been driving for years or if you’re new to taking to the road, you should be aware of your vehicle’s annual MOT test and what is involved. Knowing more about the specific components of your car that are checked will make you more informed about repairs leading up to your assessment.

The law in the UK states that once a car is 3 years old it must be tested every single year to ensure that it still meets the legal road safety requirements and environmental standards. Short for the Ministry of Transport, an MOT can only be carried out by authorised and certified professionals that can be easily identified by the familiar blue and white sign.

MOT test centre logo icon

The inspection carried out involves multiple checks around your car that range from checking your lights, brakes, exhaust system, fuel system and all safety features. However, they do not cover checking your clutch, gearbox or the condition of your engine.

With as much as 40% of MOT tests failing the first time round due mostly to minor faults, it is important to understand exactly what is checked so you may be able to repair these issues beforehand. Typically, we see a few common mistakes people make before signing their car in for inspection.

Issues With Your License Plate

This can be anything from being too dirty to an illegal type face or missing completely. As a legal requirement your registration plate must be clearly visible and meet the requirements of the DVLA.

Screen Wash & Other Fluids Not Topped Up

Vital to the proper running of your car, the screen wash, oil, power steering, brake fluid & coolant should all be at the appropriate levels prior to your inspection. This can prevent very simple failures from happening.

Headlights & Indicators

Easily checked by yourself before your inspection, if your car’s headlights or brake lights are faulty then let us know when booking in your test to prevent a failed inspection. Our mechanics can replace the broken lights prior to your test to ensure they pass the assessment.

red and yellow fault lights showing in car speedometer

Warning Lights

A later addition to the MOT checks are warning lights on your dashboard. If any of these show up, you should have your vehicle checked by a professional as soon as you can. If any are lit up before your test, then this will cause your vehicle to fail.

By simply checking these things beforehand, you give your car the very best chance of passing with the components that are within your control. Of course, our team of mechanics can assist with any work that needs to be done prior to your test.

Components Checked In An MOT

Primarily the Inspection is put in place to make you and other road users as safe as possible. This is why the tests have such a clear focus on safety mechanisms and components both internally and externally.

Mechanical Components

Safety Features

Failing Your MOT

If your vehicle fails its MOT, the test centre will issue you a VT3O Certificate that explains why. You must repair these failure areas and schedule a partial MOT retest with us before you may drive your vehicle again.

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