If your car is three years or older, the law requires you to have it undergo MOT testing. On any other day, the law still requires your vehicle to be in a roadworthy condition, even though no test is usually done to confirm that. Nonetheless, at some point, the MOT test will have to be done and what you don’t want at this time is the constant worry and panic. Will my car pass the test? What if it fails? Those are questions we come across often. Here’s the trick: If you service your car regularly, such a test should never worry you.
Why An MOT Test?
Having a car that is not roadworthy threatens not just the safety of other road users but also the environment. That law steps in to ensure that doesn’t happen. One way it does that is by requiring your vehicle to undergo an MOT Test.
The test thoroughly checks components of your car, the goal being to ascertain whether their condition and quality meet the legal requirements.
What Components Does An MOT Test Examine?
- Brakes – The condition and performance of your brakes will be checked thoroughly, together with their state of operation.
- Doors – Do the car doors open and close as expected? While shut, does it latch securely?
- Exhaust Emissions – There are laws that guide exhaust emissions. The test will check to see if your car abides by them.
- Exhaust System – Is it complete and secure? Does it silence effectively? Also, see to it that leaks don’t exist.
- Fuel System – Existence of leaks in your fuel system could see you fail the test. And if the fuel cap doesn’t fit properly and seal securely, that makes things even worse. Make sure that both issues don’t exist.
- Horn – The test looks at the type of horn installed in your car to determine if it’s the correct kind. It’s positioning also matters.
- Lights – Your lights need to be operational. Their colour also needs to be of the right kind. The test will also examine the security aspects of your light.
- Mirrors – Does your car have mirrors? If yes, the next step will be to check their condition and details that relate to security.
- Registration – When it comes to registration, four key factors will be considered: legibility, security, condition, and number/letter format.
- Seatbelts – Your seatbelts will be assessed to determine their condition, type, security, and condition of operation. Security aspects of it will also be probed.
- Seats – Are the front seats in your car secure?
- Steering and suspension – Both need to be working properly. Their state of operation will be inspected.
- Vehicle identification number – Is your vehicle identification number readable? How it’s displayed also matters – make sure it’s permanent.
- Vehicle structure – Certain sections of your car have to be free from damage and not susceptible to corrosion.
- Wheels and tyres – The test will focus will be on their condition, size, tread depth, safety, and condition of operation.
- Windscreen – The condition of your windscreen will be examined, together with the view of the road from the driver’s position.
- Wipers and Washers – Both have to be working effectively and in a position to ensure you have a clear view of the road.
What Happens When You Fail The MOT Test?
You can have the MOT test carried out a month before your MOT certificate expires. But before you consider this option, make sure you have noted your MOT certificate’s expiry date.
Even if your vehicle fails to pass the test during this time, you can still use it on the road – with your existing MOT certificate until its validity ends. However, if the test found serious problems, your car will not be allowed on the road until you have the issues fixed.
In the meantime, make sure the problems listed on your certificate are addressed before the certificate expires. This will improve your chances of passing the second test and getting another certificate.
Right now, there are a variety of retest options to choose from. Your choice will majorly depend on the reason for your first failure. Some are actually great because they save you the pain of having to pay extra test fees.
Here’s a brief look at each:
Option 1: Leave Your Vehicle At The [Location] Test Center For Repairs
In cases where you have the test done at a facility that also offers repair services, then you can have them fix the issues that lead to the failure. Should the repairs be completed within 10 working days, that will qualify your vehicle for a partial retest that only inspects the issues raised in the VT30 certificate.
Option 2: Retest the Car Within One Working Day
You can have your vehicle fixed elsewhere then bring it back to the facility where the initial test was carried out. A free partial retest will then be done.
Option 3: Have Your Car Repaired Within 10 Working Days
Take your car to another garage for repair but make sure that it’s ready within 10 working days. Take it back to the original test centre for a retest within this period. Note that you will be levied a partial retest fee that’s usually half of what you paid for the initial test. In cases where the repair work exceeds the set 10-day period, a retest will still be done but at a full fee.