Skip to content

Prepare for that MOT

The annual MOT can be a nerve jangling and costly experience but new research from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) suggests that up to 1.5 million MOT failures could be avoided just by carrying out some simple checks taking as little as two minutes. To promote the idea, the SMMT has launched a campaign called a "Minute or Two" to educate drivers about key checks that can be carried out quickly with no specialist knowledge and potentially save time and money.

The annual MOT can be a nerve jangling and costly experience but new research from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) suggests that up to 1.5 million MOT failures could be avoided just by carrying out some simple checks taking as little as two minutes. To promote the idea, the SMMT has launched a campaign called a "Minute or Two" to educate drivers about key checks that can be carried out quickly with no specialist knowledge and potentially save time and money. SMMT chief executive, Mike Staunton, explains: "The message that we are keen to get across to motorists is that an MOT fail could be very easily avoided if a simple check is carried out beforehand."

The SMMT campaign comes in the wake of new additions to the MOT test last month that many industry observers felt could result in more failures. Mr Staunton continued: "With the introduction of a number of new additions to the annual MOT test just last month, it is even more important for vehicle owners to understand the advantage that a few simple checks could make to the outcome of their test." The checks that the SMMT recommends are indeed simple and can be carried out by anyone. The top ten checks include the following:

1) Number plate: Your number plate should be clean and legible. Any plate obscured by road grime could result in failure. The typeface and spacing must also be standard, so if you have added a fancy font it might be best to revert to the original.

2) Headlights and indicators: Check every light on your car functions properly, including headlights, sidelights, rear lights, hazards and indicators.

3) Brake lights: Depress the footbrake and have someone check that the rear brake lights respond.

4) Seats and seatbelts: The driver's seat needs to be able to move backwards and forwards and all of the seatbelts should be in proper working order. Tug them to check they respond.

5) Wheels and tyres: Check tread depth is more than 1.6mm and tyres are undamaged.

6) Windscreen wipers: Wipers need to be able to clean the windscreen effectively.

7) Windscreen: Cracks as small as 10mm can cause a fail. It is 40mm for cracks out with the sweep area of the wipers.

8) Fuel and oil: It is a little known fact that even an empty fuel tank or too little oil can cause a fail. Make sure you are topped up.

9) Horn: It needs to work. Give it a peep.

10) Screenwash: Yes, even an empty screenwash can fail. Make sure it is topped up.

Posted by on

Back to April 2013

Back to top