Easy checks to avoid an MOT failure

This is according to research from the Society of Motoring Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) which highlights the extent motorists across Britian are wasting time and money on doomed MOT tests.

The reality is though that such a test can be avoided and can be turned successful just from some straightforward observatory checks to your car.

MOT tests are a vital requirement for all vehicles aged over three years in the UK, which undergo such a test once a year to check if the car is roadworthy.

The MOT is undertaken by qualified engineers to ensure the car meets safety regulations and emissions criteria.

If your car does not have a valid MOT certificate, it is not legally allowed to be driven on UK roads. The only exception is if your MOT has expired and you are driving to a pre-booked MOT.

In response to the alarming statistics it uncovered, the SMMT has now launched a UK campaign to provide guidance to motorists on the simple pre-MOT visual checks which they can carry out on their own vehicle.

With the backing of over 5,000 registered manufactured dealerships across Britain, this is one of the biggest campaigns of its kind ever.

As well as aiming to provide more assistance to motorists who are unsure about carrying out the checks themselves, the campaign has also spawned a handy ten-step checklist, which can be viewed now at passmymot.co.uk.

The ‘Minute or Two’ checklist forms a handy guide to UK motorists facing a MOT test soon, whom can look over it here now for guidance on whether their car is ready or not.

UK drivers can book an MOT check on their vehicle now from Perrys MOT page. Other services including checks and repairs can also be arranged through Perrys Service online page or by visiting your nearest Perrys Dealership.

The ‘Minute Or Two’ checklist

1. Headlights and indicators

Check that all of your car’s lights function properly – headlights, sidelights, rear lights, hazard lights and indicators.

2. Brake lights

Press the brake pedal and ask a friend to check that the rear brake lights come on – including any supplementary brake strip light. Alternatively, you can check the brake lights alone by making the use of nearby reflective surfaces such as a window, wall or garage door and look behind to see for yourself.

3. Number plate

Make sure that the number plate on your car is both clean and legible, even a quick wipe with a cloth can make a big difference. The font and spacing of letters on your number plate must also comply with legal requirements to be passed by the MOT station.

4. Wheels and tyres

Check that wheels and tyres are undamaged. The minimum legal tyre tread depth is 1.6mm and any tyres with less than this will be marked as an MOT ‘fail’.

If you’re in doubt about how much tread is left on a tyre, your local manufacturer main dealer can check for you. The relevant dealer can also advise on the type of tyre that is right for your car if a replacement is required.

5. Seats and seatbelts

The driver’s seat should be adjustable both forwards and backwards and all seatbelts should be in suitable, working order. Its worth testing the movement of the seat yourself and inspecting the seatbelt’s full length for damage. Also tug sharply on all seatbelts to check that they react as they’re supposed to if you have to brake severely.

6. Windscreen

Check the view out of the front of the car for any damage. Any traces of damager larger than 40mm will cause a ‘fail’. This along with any damage wider than 10mm in the ‘swept’ area of the windscreen, in other words the part of the windscreen directly in front of the driver.

7. Windscreen wipers

Check your wipers are able to keep your windscreen clean, any tears or holes in the wiper rubber can easily lead to an MOT fail.

8. Screenwash

Remember to top up the washer bottle before taking the car in for a test – something as simple as an empty container can cause an MOT fail.

9. Horn

Give a short blast of the horn, if it doesn’t work, your dealer will need to repair or replace it.

10. Fuel and engine oil

Check your car is filled with enough fuel and engine oil – you can be turned away from the MOT without suitable levels of either, both of which are required by the dealership when running the car to test its emissions levels. If you are unsure about the type of oil that should be used, ask your manufacturer main dealer.

Note: When checking fluid levels and handling parts that could be become hot to the touch (eg bulbs), it is safest to ensure that the vehicle has had an opportunity to cool down fully.