Recent data shows that many cars are failing MoTs on easily-rectified faults. Follow this guide and avoid the pitfalls.

 

 

 

 

ANY CAR more than three-years old has to go through the dreaded MoT test, but does it have to be a cause for dread? Not of you make some simple checks beforehand to avoid the most common MoT failure points.

You’ll know if there’s something major wrong with your car, such as a damaged engine or gearbox, but most cars fail the MoT on broken lights, worn wiper blades and cracked windows.

All of these are easy points to check for ahead of the MoT test and to have them fixed so you don’t have to worry about them.

A quick visual inspection of the light lenses and windscreen will show up any cracks or stonechips. If you find any on the windscreen, there’s a good chance your insurance will cover the cost of a replacement without affecting your no-claims bonus or premium.

Damaged light lenses are usually easy to replace and you can often find them online at very competitive prices if you don’t mind wielding a screwdriver yourself.

While checking the lights, make sure all of the bulbs are working properly, including the brake lights, indicators and hazard warning lights. They are often forgotten about but are vital safety items.

As part of this visual check, have a look underneath the car for any leaks that might point towards a possible problem. If you’re not sure, ask a mechanic to look at the car before the MoT test is due so you can have the work completed while the car is still road legal.

Also have a good look at the tyres for plenty of tread across the width of the tyre and tread depth. Take the time to check the tyre pressures too as a sagging tyre will alert an MoT tester to a car that is not cared for.

Under the bonnet, look at the brake and coolant fluid levels. There are marks on the reservoir bottles so it’s easy to spot if either needs topping up. If your car is regularly serviced, this should not be a concern. Also check the oil level while you’re here: it’s not an MoT check but still worth doing. Don’t forget the windscreen washerbottle too.

After closing the bonnet, inspect the wiper blades for any cracks, splits or wear. Replacing wiper blades is quick and easy and many car parts superstores will even do this for you for free when you buy new wipers.

Finally on the outside, give the car a good wash and make sure the number plates and lights are all free of dirt.
Clean the inside too as it shows the car is looked after.

Then, press the horn and every buttons and switch to make sure they all work properly. Look at the dashboard for any warning lights that don’t go out when the engine is running. This is now an MoT fail point to have warning lights on but can often be fixed with a new fuse.

Inspect all of the seat belts for any wear, fraying or cuts and they pull out and retract smoothly. Then, release and reapply the handbrake to be certain it’s doing its job.

All of these checks are quick and simple to carry out ahead of an MoT and they could save you a lot of hassle, time and money by avoiding that dreaded MoT failure.

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