Some drivers feel that MOT tests are a mystery—a mandated inconvenience, during which an overly fussy inspector will do their best to find something wrong with the car in order to fail it. But this is not the case at all. MOT inspectors have very strict criteria to adhere to, and they cannot randomly fail cars just because they feel like it. And the more you know about the MOT process, the more confident you will feel about, understanding exactly why your car will pass or fail the test. Let’s have a look at some of the lesser known aspects of the MOT test to broaden your understanding even more.
How does an MOT work?
Be quick and get a partial retest
If your car does happen to fail its MOT, act quickly to get the necessary repairs done. If you present your car back at the MOT inspection centre within 10 working days, you will qualify for a partial retest. This is when the MOT inspector just looks at the items that failed, rather than re-examining the whole car – and it will be cheaper too; something that many drivers are glad of after having their car repaired. Elite Direct can be your ideal choice for MOT test in London – and hopefully, they will see you sail through your test, without needing a partial retest at all!
Illegal vehicle modifications
Motor head’s love to make their cars look and feel – and sometimes even sound – unique, something distinctive while out and about on the road. While a great number of vehicle modifications are perfectly legal, make sure you check the regulations before changing anything on your car, just in case. Let’s have a look at some problematic mods.
- Noise: A jacked up exhaust system that makes your car roar like a dragon, or a bangin’ music system to blast your favourite beats might sound like something that you can choose to install in your car. But if your car is too noisy, from either of these causes, it can cause you to be pulled over by police as noise pollutions—and it can see you fail your MOT too.
- Number plate: Number plate cages, funky lighting around the number plate, or setting your number plate off to one side can all raise eyebrows during your MOT. The main thing with number plates is that they must always be easily read by ANPR systems (automatic number plate recognition systems). If your inspector thinks that your modification to the number plate area will make it harder for law enforcement to catch the registration of your car, you will receive an MOT fail.
- Visibility: Tinted windshields and windows are usually a no-no. Cars tend to be manufactured at the maximum level of tint, so adding anything to darken your windows and windscreen is not a good idea.
- Distractions: Anything that might distract you or other road users is a no-no. This includes flashing lights in the wheel-wells, stickers and air fresheners hanging from the mirror and anything else that might draw attention.
MOT grace period
There is a rather persistent urban myth (exacerbated during the Covid-19 lockdowns) that there is a grace period for your MOT. This usually runs that you can drive without an MOT for up to two weeks after the expiry date—this is not true and never has been! While MOTs were all extended during the lockdowns (because it would have been illegal to be out for such a ‘frivolous’ reason), there has never been a grace period before the MOT. Rather, you can get your MOT done in the month before its expiry date without losing the anniversary date.
Featured image: Macrovector/Freepik