The UK MOT Test Check List – Page 2
*New items added in 2012 are highlighted yellow or organge. Some of these items, highlighted yellow, have been incorporated into the MOT Test since 1st January 2012, and while the others (which are highlighted orange) were originally scheduled to be incorporated by May 2012, this was delayed until 20th March 2013. Whilst these items were inspected, if found defective a failure did not apply and they were 'Advised' only, and not recorded as a 'Fail' on the MOT computer. As of Wednesday 20th March 2013 these items, if defective, will result in an MOT failure.
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It is important, therefore, for motorists presenting vehicles for MOT retest, make sure that such previously 'advisory', but now 'failure' items are indeed properly repaired before presenting the vehicle for an MOT re-Test.
*As noted in 'Matters of Testing' 52, issued December 2011.
If you need detailed information about the full MOT check, go to the online MOT Tester's Manual.
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Includes body and components such as spoilers, bumpers and mirror housings.
For vehicles with a separate body, the body must not be so insecure or displaced so that it might lead to loss of control of the vehicle when driven, or be a danger to other road users
There must be no dangerous sharp edges or projections caused by corrosion or damage which is dangerous to other road users including pedestrians
A vehicle can fail with respect to corrosion for:
- Excessive corrosion in a 'prescribed area' — within 30 cms of certain safety related components, e.g. brakes, steering, suspension, seat belt mountings etc.
- Excessive corrosion not in a 'prescribed area', but which is likely to adversely affect the vehicle's braking or steering.
Excessive corrosion' can mean a hole or a significantly weakened structure
Car battery and electrical wiring to be inspected - includes electric and hybrid vehicles.
Reason for failure:
- leaking electrolyte
Reason for failure:
- insecure or inadequately supported
- damaged or deteriorated (so that it may cause short circuit or become detached)
- insulation dmamaged so that wiring or connectors are exposed
See Towbar section for Trailer electrical socket inspection.
An engine mounting which is missing or seriously deteriorated, resulting in excessive movement. Also includes gearbox mountings that provide essential support for the engine.
Reason for failure:
Mounting which is
- seriously deteriorated resulting in excessive movement
Engine Mounting bracket which is
- or damaged so that it is likely to fail.
Class (v) Reasons for Rejection:
- An entrance or exit step or its anti-slip provision is insecure or in such condition that it is likely to be a trip hazard or cause injury, or a retractable step not operating correctly
- A stair is missing
- A stair or its anti-slip provision is insecure, or in such a condition that it is likely to be a trip hazard or cause injury
- A passenger entrance or exit door is in such a condition that its function is impaired, it is likely to cause injury or its remote control is inoperative
- A passenger 'Door Open' warning device is inoperative
- A 'Break Glass' emergency exit hammer is missing
- An emergency exit sign is missing or illegible
- The driver's and the front passenger's seats must be secure.
- The driver's seat fore and aft adjustment mechanism must function as intended.
- All seat backs must be securable in the upright position.
MOT Test of Seat Belts including Supplementary Restraint Systems (SRS
Most vehicles after 1965 must have seat belts. Irrespective of that requirement, all seat belts fitted to any vehicle must be inspected for:
- Security of seat belt mountings and locking stalks
- Security and operation of the locking/release mechanism
- Condition of webbing
- Retraction of the belt (it is allowed to manually feed it in)
- A seat belt load limiter or pre-tensioner must not be missing or obviously deployed
Notes: 1. For technical reasons the inertia locking mechanism is not checked. 2. On some vehicles the belt is attached to the seat, in which case the security of the seat to the vehicle would also constitute part of the seat belt check.
Supplementary Restraint Systems
This inspection includes airbags, seat belt pre-tensioners and seat belt load limiters.
- Presence and condition of any SRS
Turn on ignition and check for
- Presence and operation of Malfunction Iindicator Lamp (MIL)
Presence and condition of any seat belt load limiters or pre-tensioners fitted as original equipment.
Reasons for failure:
- airbag missing or defective
- SRS Malfunction Indicator Lamp:
- Indicating malfunction
Brake efficiency and balace is usually checked on a roller brake tester. In certain cases where a roller brake tester may not be used (for example on certain 4-wheel drive vehicles) it may be necessary to check brake efficiency and balance on a road test, with a portable decelerometer.
Inside the car
- Electronic parking Brake (EPB) warning device must not be indicating a malfunction
- Electronic stability control (ESC) component must not be obviously missing, damaged or inappropriately repaired or modified
- ESC wiring must not be excessively damaged
- ESC warning lamp must be present, working and not indicating a fault
- ESC Swithch must not be insecure or faulty
- A brake slack adjuster must not be defective or incorrectly installed
- A brake fluid warning lamp must not be inoperative or illuminated
- Class (v): Electronic braking system (EBS) warning device must not be inoperative or indicating a fault
Anti-lock braking system (if fitted) warning lamp is checked for:
- Sequence of operation
- Sufficient reserve travel on the footbrake
- Pedal rubber not worn to excess
- Correct operation of the servo assistance system
- ABS and ESC components and associated wiring/switch checked for presence and condition
This could be hand, foot or electronically operated. Checked for reserve travel so that it doesn't reach the stops on application. The mountings will be checked for security and/or corrosion.
The brake lever or control will be a fail if:
- defective or located so that it cannot be satisfactorily operated
- any inappropriate repair or modification
During a decelerometer test, if vehicle deviates from a straight line when parking brake applied then this becomes a fail.
Anti-Lock Braking (ABS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) Systems
The inspection applies to all systems, original equipment or 'aftermarket'. Will be checked for being fitted (if originally specified), illuminating, not indicating fault, ABS to follow correct sequence.
If ABS or ESC system has been intentionally rendered inoperative the whole system, with the exception of sensor rings or other components which form part of another component.
Reasons for rejection:
- component missing, damaged, inappropriately repaired or modified
- wiring excessively damaged
- Does not illuminate
- Indicates a fault
- (For ABS) does not follow the correct sequence
ABS or ESC
- Component missing or excessively damaged
- Wiring excessively damaged
- Inappropriately repaired or modified
- Switch faulty or insecure
Under bonnet checks
Master cylinder and servo unit are checked for leaks with the engine on and the brakes applied
Servo unit will be checked to ensure it is operating correctly
Visible metal or flexible brake pipes will be checked for corrosion, condition, fouling or leaks
Under vehicle checks
Flexible brake pipes and any other metal brake pipes visible beneath the car are checked
Discs and drums (external only) checked for condition and contamination
Brake back plates and caliper securing devices are checked for condition and security
Condition of the brake pads will be checked if visible
The assistant operates the handbrake and the condition of the linkages and/or cables is checked.
On some vehicles there will be a brake compensating valve beneath the car which will need to be inspected for fluid leaks
All components checked for security, condition and operation.
Reason for failure:
- Component inappropriately repaired or modified
- Insecurely mounted
- Excessively weakened
- Retaining or locking device insecure
- Cable, rod or clevis joint insecure
- A load sensing valve seized, inoperative, function impaired or incorrectly adjusted
- Air brake actuator dust cover missing or not preventing ingress of dirt etc.
Brake performance check
The performance of the front and rear brakes and handbrake are checked for efficiency and balance using specialised equipment.
Changes to how vehicle windscreens are to be checked for the MOT
When an MOT Tester checks a vehicle’s windscreen for the MOT he or she will look at two different ‘zones’ of the screen. The most important zone is the one immediately in front of the driver, which is swept by the wiper blade – it is called ‘Zone A’ in MOT parlance.
Includes all items affecting the driver's view of the road: the condition of the windscreen, the wipers and washers. Satnavs in the windscreen, furry dice, air fresheners or trinkets hanging from the mirror are not allowed.
Chips or cracks in the windscreen directly in front of the driver, in the area swept by the wiper blades, are acceptable if they are less than 10mm in diameter. In the rest of the swept area, up to 40mm diameter damage is acceptable.
Change in policy (Oct 2011) "...it is permissible to have a defect larger than 10mm in the swept area of zone A, as long as it is not in the 'drivers view of the road'. Should now be "Pass and advise".
Official stickers (any used in connection with road enforcement, security or crime prevention matters) that are not readily removable are only a reason for rejection if they restrict the driver's view.
CLASS (v): window, screen or partition must not be missing
Above: MOT Windscreen Test - areas where damage is allowed
Washers and wipers
- Extent of area swept by the wipers
- Condition of the wiper blades
Reasons for Rejection
Wipers and Washers
a. A wiper or washer control missing or inaccessible to the driver
b. a wiper does not continue to operate automatically when switched on
c. a wiper installed for the use of the driver does not operate over an area of the windscreen large enough to give the driver an adequate view of the road (through the windscreen) to the left and right sides of the vehicle, as well as to the front.
A wiper blade insecure, missing, or in such a condition that it does not clear the windscreen effectively to give the driver an adequate view of the road (through the windscreen) to the left and right sides of the vehicle, as well as to the front.
The windscreen washers do not provide enough liquid to clear the windscreen in conjunction with the wiper(s).
Applies to obligatory mirrors and "Indirect vision devices" such as cameras – and in this case the method of inspection and reason for failure will apply to both the camera and the screen. Not all mirrors or cameras etc. on all vehicles are subject to Test, depending on the age of the vehicle.
Those mirrors which must be checked must be
- Visible from the driver's seat
- Not distorted or damaged so as to seriously impair the driver's view to the rear
|Obligatory Mirror / Device Fitment Requirements|
|Vehicle Type||Date of First Use||Requirements|
|Passenger vehicles with less than 8 passenger seats||First used before 1 August 1978||At least one mirror/device in any of the above positions.|
|Any passenger vehicle(excluding buses and minibuses)||First used on or after 1 August 1978||Two mirrors/devices, one of which must be in position ‘a’.|
|Passenger vehicles with 8 or morepassenger seats (excluding buses and minibuses)|
|Buses and minibuses||First used before 1 August 1983||An exterior mirror/device fitted on both the offside and the nearside (‘a’ and ‘b’).|
|First used on or after 1 August 1983|
Obligatory mirror options are:
a. an exterior mirror fitted to the offside (right-hand side when seated in the driver's seat), or
b. an exterior mirror fitted to the nearside (left hand side when seated in the driver's seat), or
c. an interior mirror.
All goods vehicles must have two mirrors, one of which must be option 'a'.
Passenger vehicles with no more than 7 passenger seats first used before 1 August 1978 must have any one of the above options.
Reasons For Rejection
An obligatory mirror:
a. is missing or insecure
b. is so damaged or deteriorated that the view to the rear is seriously impaired
c. does not provide a view to the rear of the vehicle
d. is not clearly visible from the driver's seat, or incapable of being adjusted to be clearly visible from the driver's seat.
Any mirrors additional to the obligatory mirrors are not subject to this inspection.
Under bonnet checks
- Upper suspension joints
- Any other suspension components which can be inspected from beneath the bonnet
Under vehicle checks
Applies to the front and rear suspension
- No split pins or nuts missing, no components broken or excessively damaged
- Road springs are checked for condition
- All suspension joints are checked for condition
- Ball joint dust covers checked for not allowing ingress of dirt etc
- Shock absorbers must not leak and must be secure (the vehicle will be 'bounced' by the Tester* to check that they damp the springs adequately).
- Inappropriate repair or modification of suspension components
- Any drive shaft (except the prop shaft) support bearing excessively worn or coupling gaiter missing or no longer preventing ingress of dirt etc.
The suspension is checked for wear by the assistant applying loads in various ways with the wheels jacked up whilst the Tester observes the result from beneath the vehicle. This may include the use of approved wheel play detectors in some Test Stations.
* This item will be removed from the MOT Test subject to the required legislation being passed.
Note: There are numerous different suspension systems, and the specific nature of any examination will depend to a large extent on the design of the suspension system.
The exhaust system will fail the MOT if:
- Part of the system missing or excessively deteriorated
(from February 2014 a missing diesel particulate filter, if originally fitted, will be a Reason for Rejection)
- A catalytic converter is missing where one was fitted as standard (on vehicles subject to a full cat test only)
- Mounting is missing or damaged so that the exhaust system is insecure
- There is a major leak
- The system emits appreciably more noise than a similar vehicle fitted with a standard system in good condition.
- Class (v): Exhaust tailpipe positioned so that fumes are likely to enter the driver or passenger area.
These are checked using specialised equipment, the details of the check depending on the year that the vehicle was first used on the road. Excessive smoking (checked visually) is a reason for failure.
Diesel smoke emissions are checked by using a smoke meter.
Any fuel leak will result in a fail. Checked under the bonnet and throughout the run of the fuel line from the fuel tank to the engine.
- Fuel filler cap must fasten securely
- The seal in the cap must not be torn, deteriorated or missing (includes self-sealing flaps)
- No other defect which could cause fuel to leak out
- The fuel tank must be securely mounted
- A fuel pipe or hose must not be excessively chafed or damaged
- A tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) warning lamp must be operative and not indicating a fault in the system
(On vehicles first used on or after 1st January 2012).
The reason for failure with respect to tyre wear is:
"The grooves of the tread pattern are not at least 1.6mm throughout a continuous band comprising: the central three-quarters of the breadth of tread around the entire outer circumference of the tyre".
Tyres must be correctly matched with regard to:
- Fitted in accordance with tyre sidewall markings – eg direction of rotation or ‘outside’ in case of asymmetric tyres.
NB. type or structure but not both.
- Tyres on the same axle must be of the same structure and size.
- General condition of tyre
- Condition of valve
Tyres fail if they have serious cuts, bulges or other damage.
The wear on the tyre is checked with a tyre tread depth gauge to ensure compliance.
The tyres are examined to ensure that there is no fouling with any part of the vehicle, unless part of the steering mechanism design.
1. Although under-inflation is not in itself a reason for failure (on vehicles on which the TPMS test is applicable, if a fault is indicated by the TPMS then that will be a fail), a brake test may be inadvisable because of possible damage, and it may affect headlamp alignment. The condition of the spare tyre is not part of the MOT.
2. From 2012, Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS) will form part of the MOT Test. Vehicles on which TPMS was originally fitted will have to have it fully operable. When this test is implemented one faulty sensor will result in a fail.
- Distorted bead rim
- Securely attached to the vehicle
- No wheel nuts or studs missing
An externally fitted spare wheel or spare wheel carrier must not be so insecure that it is likely to fall off.
- Handlebars or fork yokes must not be excessively deformed or inappropriately reapaired or modified
- A service brake control must not be missing, or its mounting retaining or locking device missing or insecure