Planning to go in for an MOT check

Vehicles that are at least 3 years old are required to undergo an annual MOT check. The 3-year timeframe is determined by the vehicle’s registration date, not its purchase date. However, in Northern Ireland, this requirement applies after 4 years. Vintage vehicles, over 40 years old, are exempt from MOT unless significant modifications have been made. You can easily and conveniently check the MOT due date on the DVLA website, ensuring compliance with the necessary testing and providing peace of mind regarding your vehicle’s roadworthiness.

Going in for an MOT test

Currently, there are around 21,000 MOT centres across the UK. However, it’s essential to verify if a garage is approved by checking the DVLA website. Plan ahead and schedule your MOT well in advance, considering both national chains and independent garages that offer MOT services. Ensuring timely booking helps you meet the MOT due date and gives you a range of options for conducting the MOT test.

Time taken for an MOT test 

Typically, an MOT test lasts approximately 60 minutes, and vehicle owners have the option to wait at the centre until the test process is finished. Once the vehicle passes the MOT, the owner can make the payment, collect the certificate, and retrieve the car from the centre. However, if the vehicle does not pass the MOT, the garage will contact the owner to provide details on the required actions to ensure the vehicle meets the examination standards. This communication allows the owner to address the identified issues and make the necessary repairs or adjustments to pass the MOT successfully.

Unable to clear the MOT 

Once a vehicle successfully passes its MOT test, the owner can obtain the certificate and use the vehicle without any worries for the next 12 months. However, if the vehicle fails the MOT for specific reasons and the same garage performs the necessary repairs, the retest will be conducted at no additional cost. During the retest, only the areas that previously failed will be assessed. Alternatively, if the owner chooses to have the repairs done at a different garage, they must complete the repairs within 10 days and return to the original garage for the retest. In this case, the retest will not be free, but it generally proves more cost-effective than obtaining a completely new MOT test.

If a vehicle has a major fault during its MOT, it is deemed as not cleared. Owners have the option to have the repairs completed at the original garage or take the vehicle to another garage. Major faults can include issues such as issues with the catalytic converter, faulty brake lights or an excessively loud exhaust. While the vehicle may still be drivable, addressing major faults is crucial to ensure compliance with MOT standards and maintain road safety.

If a dangerous fault is identified during the MOT test, the vehicle owner is prohibited from driving the car away from the testing garage, as it is considered unfit for the road. In such cases, the vehicle will either need to have the necessary repairs conducted at the MOT garage or be towed to another garage for repairs. Examples of dangerous faults include issues like defective brake lights, missing wheel nuts and hydraulic fluid leakage etc. Addressing these dangerous faults promptly is essential to ensure the safety of the vehicle’s occupants and other road users.

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