mechanic doing a vehicle inspection

What Can Fail an MOT Test?

by | 27 Oct 2023 | News

When it comes to getting your vehicle through its annual MOT (Ministry of Transport) test, it’s important to be aware of the potential reasons for failure. The MOT test is a legal requirement in many countries and is designed to ensure that vehicles are safe and roadworthy. While it may seem daunting, understanding the common reasons for MOT failure can help you prepare and address any issues before the test.

Here are some of the key areas that can lead to a failed MOT:

  1. Lighting and signalling: Faulty headlights, taillights, indicators, brake lights, and fog lights are common reasons for MOT failure. It’s important to regularly check that all lights are functioning properly and replace any faulty bulbs.
  2. Tyres and wheels: Insufficient tread depth, damaged or worn-out tyres, and incorrect tyre pressure are all reasons for MOT failure. Make sure your tyres are in good condition and meet the legal requirements for tread depth.
  3. Brakes: Issues with the braking system can result in an MOT failure. This includes worn brake pads, leaking brake fluid, and malfunctioning ABS (Anti-lock Braking System). Regular brake maintenance is essential for passing the MOT test.
  4. Suspension and steering: Excessive play in the steering wheel, worn-out suspension components, and leaking shock absorbers can all lead to an MOT failure. Regular inspection of these components is crucial for a successful MOT.
  5. Exhaust emissions: Vehicles that emit excessive pollutants during the emissions test will fail the MOT. This can be caused by a malfunctioning catalytic converter, faulty oxygen sensors, or an engine running inefficiently. Regular servicing and maintenance can help minimise emissions and increase the chances of passing the MOT.
  6. Bodywork and structure: Significant corrosion or damage to the vehicle’s bodywork or structural components can result in an MOT failure. It’s important to regularly check for rust and address any issues promptly.
  7. Seatbelts and restraints: Damaged or non-functioning seatbelts, as well as faulty seatbelt buckles or pretensioners, can lead to an MOT failure. Ensure that all seatbelts are in good working condition.
  8. Windscreen and mirrors: A cracked or damaged windscreen, as well as faulty mirrors, can result in an MOT failure. It’s important to repair or replace any damaged glass before the test.
  9. Registration plates: Illegible or incorrectly displayed registration plates can lead to an MOT failure. Make sure your plates are clean, securely attached, and comply with the legal requirements.
  10. Other miscellaneous factors: There are several other factors that can cause an MOT failure, such as faulty wipers, an inadequate horn, or an insecure fuel cap. Regularly checking these components and addressing any issues will increase the likelihood of passing the MOT test.

By being aware of these common reasons for MOT failure and taking proactive measures to address them, you can ensure a smoother and more successful MOT test experience. Remember, regular vehicle maintenance and servicing are key to keeping your vehicle in good condition and passing the MOT test.