Checks you should do before taking your car for MOT
First introduced in 1960, the Ministry of Transport test - more commonly known as an MOT - is a test conducted every year on cars over three years of age, to ensure the roadworthiness of the vehicle. It involves, among many other things, testing the steering, braking and exhaust systems. You cannot drive your car if it possesses an expired MOT, so it’s incredibly important to keep on top of it.
Although an MOT is designed to find the faults and the issues that may be facing your vehicle, there are a number of things you can do to prepare. There is always the chance your MOT will fail on something you could have fixed in advance - something as simple as a broken bulb - and this is certainly the case for 1.5 million failed MOTs every year. So which parts of the car can you check before your MOT to help ensure your vehicle passes this essential test?
1. The lights - the lights are an essential part of driving, be it for lighting the road in the dark or indicating direction, reversing or braking. These can easily be checked by simply switching them on and off, however it could be worth asking for help to confirm the brake lights are bright and working correctly.
2. The horn - the number one job the horn does is to make other road users aware of your presence. In an emergency situation, the horn is vital, so testing it frequently is important.
3. The windscreens - if you can’t see, you can’t drive, so a windscreen with cracks or chips, broken wipers or anything at all impeding the driver’s view is bad news for the MOT.
4. The tires - a really common MOT failure point, the tires must be of the legal tread depth in order to pass the test.
5. The exhaust - noisy exhaust systems scream failure, so instead of paying for another MOT as a result of failure, seek professional help to fix the problem.
5. The brakes - hands down one of the most important parts of the car, your handbrake and your footbrake must be in complete working order, and in no way faulty due to excessive wear.
6. The seatbelts - your seatbelt is an essential safety feature - be sure there is no damage and that it works correctly when pulled in a mock-collision position.
7. The number plates - the number plate is a legal issue and must be visible and in a good condition at all times, so make sure both plates are cleaned up and easily seen.
8. Fuel, oil and water - the test centre will need to check the emission levels of your vehicle, so make sure your car is topped up with all the essential fluids.
Sorting out these issues in advance will save both money and time, so take a moment to do all you can before your MOT and you might just play a big part in its success.
published: 07/03/2014 10:01:53