Latest blog posts
Check your headlight casings and bulbs before MOT

2018 – Top 4 MOT Failures

It’s that time of the year again and your car is due an MOT. If you’re not too sure when your vehicles MOT is due, please use the MOT checker here. As many as 40% of vehicles FAIL their MOT test on the first attempt (*1). MOT re-tests are generally free – but it’s time, hassle and inconvenience many drivers could avoid.

Any labour involved in refilling your washer water, changing a bulb or wiper blade will be charged at the garage’s regular rate. Also – you will be charged a premium for any parts required to get your car through the MOT

An obvious MOT failure

Affiliated Partner

National Tyres and Autocare is the largest independent fast fit specialist in the UK. Our highly trained technicians are specialists in vehicle parts repair including tyres, exhausts, brakes, batteries, MOT testing and vehicle safety inspections. We have a network of over 200 branches throughout the UK.

End of Advert

Common Reasons for MOT Failure

Here’s the list of most common reasons for MOT failure and some guidelines to help get your car through the MOT. You may also find our MOT Self-Checks guide useful before booking your car in for it’s MOT test.

The data below has been compiled from the website’s data – an external link can be found at the bottom of this post. It’s quite amazing to see that nearly 1 in 5 cars fail an MOT due to a blown lightbulb or similar.

1) Lights & Signalling – approx 20%

This covers all aspects of illumination and signalling. Don’t forget to check the following

  • Brake lights
  • Indicators
  • Number plate light
  • Revering light
  • Headlights & sidelights

If your car has plastic lens covers check that they are not misted over – this will affect the efficiency of the headlights and may lead to a failure. Headlight cleaning kits are available from stores such as Halfords. If the lens cover is glass – check it for cracks and chips.

2) Suspension – approx 10-15%

If you do find something wrong with your suspension it’s worth getting it repaired BEFORE the MOT test. This way you have the opportunity to get a couple of quotes and get the best price. Suspension problems manifest themselves in various ways – sometimes subtle, other times very obvious. Knocking, clunking or banging – especially when turning a tight corner or driving over a speed bump or pothole – can be an indicator of a suspension problem.

Push and Bounce

The old way of checking a cars suspension – before the days of electronically controlled dampers etc – was to push down hard on each corner of the car. The desied result is for the car to dip down once, under pressure of the push, then return to the original position. The undesired result is for the car to bounce several times before settling ack down.

Get a Professional to check

If you think you may have an issue with your suspension, please get a professional mechanic at your local garage or auto-centre to check it out for you.

Affiliated Partner

Win a Supercar? Every week someone is guaranteed to win a BOTB Dream Car. In the past 19 years there have been over 400 winners, taking home over £23 million worth of prizes. Use your Spot the Ball skill for a chance to win The Best of the Best

End of Advert

3) Tyre Condition & Pressure – approx 10%

This is something most people can check themselves. Key points to look out for are :

  • Correct tyre pressures – refer to owners manual or sometimes inside the door pillars or petrol flap.
  • Check minimum tread depth. The minimum tread for a car is 1.6mm. Most modern tyres have a convenient tyre wear tread depth indicator strip. Look inside one of the deep treads running around the tyre and you should be able to locate a wear indicator – running at 90 degrees to the tread. If the main tread is at the same height – or lower – than the wear indicator the tyre will fail an MOT.
  • Look for obvious damage to the tyre such as cuts in the sidewall, bulges or even nails, tacks or similar stuck in the tread.

4) Brakes & Braking System – 10%

1 in 10 cars fail an MOT due to brake related issues. Similar to your car’s suspension, this is better left to a qualified mechanic. There are some basic things a driver can check themselves.

  • Does the car pull to one side when braking hard? If so, book it in to your local garage or auto-centre before the MOT.
  • Check brake fluid levels. Before booking your car in for an MOT check the level of brake fluid in the resevoir. There should be easily defined MAX and MIN levels on the side of the brake fluid resevoir. if you are having to top up the brake fluid regularly – then you should get the car looked at. It is NOT normal to have to top up brake fluid more than once a year or so – if that.

Affiliated Partner

CarParts4Less? is one of the largest online car and van parts store in the UK. We have a complete selection of high quality car parts for a wide range of makes and models – offered at the lowest prices

End of Advert

More services from

Visitors to the website may also be interested in the following motoring topics