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The complete Guide to the MOT Test page

guide moduleMotorists will find everything they need to know about the MOT Test here: What is checked, how it is checked, how to prepare your car for the MOT, MOT prices and what to do if you are not happy about your result.

Select items from any of the menus on this page to read about the MOT.

 

Car Owners Guide to the MOT

guide module2Click on the captions on the image below to read a description of how each item is MOT Tested, or scroll down the page to read through a description of each part of the MOT Test (Note: not listed in the order in which they are actually tested).
If you have a specific question which is not answered here, try posting a question on the MOT Testing Forum.

Click on an item below to see how it will be MOT Tested

Click on the labels below to view the details of how each item is MOT Tested.

Click here for Motorcycle MOT

mot guide

 

 

 

 

Complete List of MOT checks – Click on an item below for a description of the MOT Inspection

Click on the headings below to read a description of the relevant  MOT Test inspection.

Tyres

MOT Test of Tyres

Interior

  • 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).

Tyre condition
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:

  • Type
  • Size
  • Structure
  • 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.

Also examined:

  • 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.

Notes:
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.

Wheel condition

  • Damage
  • Distortion
  • Cracks
  • 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.

Instrument Panel

Note: Some items listed under this heading are repeated here for convenience, as they are warnings or function indicators of systems which are more fully described under their own headings.

MOT Test of Speedometer

For vehicles first used on or after 01 October 1937

The glass being cracked is not a reason for failure providing there is no possibility of misreading the speedometer, no possibility of the indicator needle being fouled or the cracked glass being a safety hazard.

Will be checked for:

  • Presence
  • Condition
  • Can be illuminated

Steering

An electronic steering lock malfunction lock warning must not be indicating a malfunction

  • An electronic power steering malfunction indicator lamp must not be indicating a malfunction


Lights – function indicator

  • 'tell-tale' device does not iluminate when main beam is selected

Supplementary Restraint Systems – Warning Indicator

  • SRS Malfunction Indicator Lamp:
  • Inoperative
  • Indicating malfunction

Brakes – Warning indicators

  • Electronic parking Brake (EPB) warning device must not be indicating a malfunction
  • ESC warning lamp must be present, working and not indicating a fault
  • ESC Switch must not be insecure or faulty
  • A brake fluid warnimg lamp must not be inoperative or illuminated
  • Class (v): Electronic braking system (EBS) warning device must not be inoperative or indicating a fault
  • ABS and ESC components and associated wiring/switch checked for presence and condition

Anti-Lock Braking (ABS) and Electronic Stability Control (ESC) Systems – Warning Indicator

Warning Lamp

  • Missing
  • Does not illuminate
  • Indicates a fault
  • (For ABS) does not follow the correct sequence

ABS or ESC

  • Switch faulty or insecure

Tyres - Warning Indicator

  • A tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) warning lamp must be operative and not indicating a fault in the system

Registration Plates (Number Plates) and VIN

MOT Test of Registration Plates (Number Plates) and VIN*

* Required on all vehicles first used on or after 1st August 1980.
NOTE: Revised Registration Plate Testing and Tow Bar Testing (see below) were effective from April 09.
see current Number Plate Regulationss table below.

Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)

  • VIN number incomplete

Registration Plate

For registered vehicles the registration plate must be:

  • Present
  • Secure
  • Not faded, dirty or obscured
  • Letters and digits must conform to the approved font design with correct spacing
  • Front plates must be black digits on white background, rear must be black on yellow
  • Honeycomb background is not allowed.

Vehicles manufactured before 1 January 1973 may have registration plates displaying white, grey or silver characters on a black background. A three-wheeled vehicle, which has a motorcycle derived front end, does not require a front number plate.

Vehicles manufactured before 1 January 1973 may have registration plates displaying white, grey or silver characters on a black background. Three-dimensional characters are permitted to use grey edging in order to achieve the 3D effect on any age of vehicle. Quadricycles must be fitted with a front number plate.

MOT Registration Plate Specifications

Relevant Dimension

Tricycles & quadricycles

All other vehicles

Character height

64mm

79mm

Character width
(except for the figure 1 or letter I)

44mm

50mm

Stroke width

10mm

14mm

Space between two characters in group

10mm

11mm

Vertical space between groups of characters

13mm

19mm

Horizontal space between groups of characters

30mm

33mm

Margins (minimum)

11mm

11mm


The VIN number* must be:

  • Permanently displayed
  • Consistent
  • Legible.

*Required on all vehicles first used on or after 1st August 1980.

Towing Hook

MOT Test of Tow Bar (Towing Hook)

Reason for Rejection:

  • A towbar component insecure, fractured or excessively worn, corroded or damaged
  • Excessive corrosion within 30cms of the towbar mounting is also a fail.
  • Towbar assembly is attached to the vehicle structure using a mounting, support or fixing which is obviously of an inappropriate size or type.
  • Retaining device missing or insecure
  • Locking device missing, insecure, inadequate or damaged to the extent that its operation is impaired.
  • Excessive play between a detachable tow ball and its receiver socket
  • A quick release mechanism that does not secure the tow ball arm as intended
  • A towbar assembly inappropriately repaired or modified
  • A trailer electrical socket insecure or damaged, or deteriorated to the extent that the connecting lead could not be securely connected
  • A trailer 13-pin Euro socket not operating the trailer lamps as intended
  • Wiring showing exposed conductors


2012 Notes: 1. Does not include emergency towing eyes. If a tow ball or pin is not fitted at the time of Test e.g. because it is detachable, has been unbolted or otherwise removed, but the attachment brackets are still in place these brackets and any trailer electrical socket should still be assessed unless the attachment brackets have been deliberately rendered unfit for further use.

2. 13-pin electric socket inspection and test for electrical function (specialist tool will be used) and check for inappropriate towbar repairs/modification will come into force when the appropriate legislation has been passed.

3. 7-pin sockets are not testable with an electrical tester as there is no standard wiring protocol.

Steering

MOT Test of Steering

Steering: Inside the car MOT checks

Steering wheel and steering column:

  • Steering wheel is in acceptable condition
  • Steering wheel is securely attached to the steering shaft
  • A steering lock mechanism must not be missing, inadvertently engaging or inoperative
  • An electronic steering lock malfunction lock warning must not be indicating a malfunction
  • An electronic power steering malfunction indicator lamp must not be indicating a malfunction
  • Upper bearings of the steering column are inspected for wear
  • Steering shaft is checked for excessive end float
  • The clamping bolts are all checked for security
  • Split pins and locking nuts are also checked.
  • 'Free play' in the steering is checked*
  • All flexible couplings and universal joints are checked


*Free play allowed depends on type of steering: 75mm for non-rack and pinion, 13mm for rack and pinion steering. Where there are several joints between the steering wheel and the rack, up to 48mm on a 380mm diameter wheel may be accepted.

Further information – reasons for failure:

1. Steering wheel weakened by modification, cracks, fractures, in a condition that hampers proper control or likely to injure the driver's hands.
Note: Cracks or incompleteness of the covering skin of a steering wheel or hub, are not a reason for rejection.
2. a) an adjustable steering column will not lock in a fixed position
b) movement between the shaft and steering wheel
c) excessive radial movement (play) at the top of the steering column between the column and the shaft indicating a badly worn top bearing.
Note: Some vehicles have flexible top bearings for the steering column. With these more than average movement is acceptable.
d. insecurity at the steering column top mounting bracket.
3. Excessive steering shaft end float.
4. Insecurity, excessive play or deterioration of a flexible coupling or universal joint.
5. A retaining or locking device missing or insecure.

Under bonnet checks

This varies vehicle to vehicle; some of these items cannot be observed from under the bonnet on some makes and models.

  • Security of the steering rack or steering box and its mountings
  • Play in steering joints
  • Inspection of any other swivel joints which form part of the vehicles' steering system which can be readily inspected from under the bonnet.

Under vehicle checks:

All the steering joints are inspected by the Tester whilst the steering is loaded by turning the steering wheel from side to side, or by the use of approved wheel play detectors

Power steering systems are checked with the engine running (Power steering fluid level will be checked with engine off)

The security of attachment of the steering rack or steering box is checked both with respect to the tightness of nuts and bolts, and structural cracking or corrosion of the vehicle chassis where it is attached

Whilst the vehicle stands on special swivel plates the wheels are turned from lock to lock and checked for smoothness of operation and to ensure that the wheels and tyres do not foul either the structure of the vehicle or any brake pipes or hoses

With the wheels jacked the wheel bearings are checked
Steering rack gaiters and front outer constant velocity joint boots are examined
Ball joint dust covers inspected for not allowing ingress of dirt etc
Metal and/or rubber bushes are checked as are split pins, locking nuts and other locking or retaining devices which relate to steering components.
On some cars there will be rear wheel steering which is checked from beneath the car.
Checked for inappropriate repair or modification to steering linkage or power steering
Steering lock stop must be present if fitted as standard
No significant oil leak from the steering box
Power steering: checked for fluid level below minimum (where visible) pipes and hoses damaged, corroded or fouling; components fouling or misaligned on external power steering systems
Any drive shaft (not including the prop shaft) support bearing excessively worn or a coupling gaiter missing or no longer preventing ingress of dirt etc.

Horn

MOT Test of Horn

  • Operation
  • Control can be easily reached by the driver
  • Loud enough
  • Not a sequential multi-tone.

Further Information
Pre 1906 vehicles can have a gong, bell or siren audible warning, provided they were designed before 1 January 1905 and constructed before 31 December 1905.

Reason for Rejection

  • The horn control missing, insecure or not readily accessible to the driver.

Note: Inform the driver if the horn is insecure.

Or the horn is

  • inoperative
  • is not loud enough to be heard by another road user
  • is a gong, bell or siren
  • has more than one tone

Note: When operated, a two or more tone horn automatically produces a sound which alternates at regular intervals between fixed notes

If fitted to a vehicle first used on or after 1 August 1973, emits a sound which is

  • Not continuous or uniform
  • Harsh or grating

Lights

MOT Test of Lights

The headlamps are checked for alignment with a Beam Setter. The headlamp beam image will be a fail if it is clearly incorrect. After first aligning the equipment with the vehicle, the left and right headlamp beams are checked to ensure they are correctly set so as not to dazzle other road users.

All required lights are checked for:

  • Operation
  • Condition
  • Security

With the exception of headlamps, all lamps must have at least 50% of the light source illuminating.
All lamps must be visible from a reasonable distance (not obscured by products on the light lens or source.

Side lights and headlamps

  • are the correct type and colour
  • dip and aim
  • LED and HiD headlamps: automatic levelling or cleaning device inoperative or obviously defective
  • 'tell-tale' device does not iluminate when main beam is selected

Stop lights, indicators and hazard lights*

  • are the correct type and colour
  • do not interfere with each other in operation
  • driver's tell-tale works with respect to indicators, or there is an audible warning system
  • hazard lights fitted and operative

Rear Fog lamps**

  • must be fitted to the centre or offside of the vehicle
  • tell-tale must work
  • must not be affected by other lamps and not be obscured
  • must be red.

Registration Plate lamps (Class (v): incl. end outline marker lamps)

  • All lamps fitted must be working
  • must illuminate with a single operation of the switch

Rear reflectors

There must be two red reflectors fitted reasonably symmetrically, securely attached and not obscured.

* Must be fitted to all vehicles first used on or after 1st April 1986, but if fitted, must be Tested.
** Must be fitted to all vehicles first used on or after 1st April 1980.

Bonnet Catch

MOT Test of Bonnet Catch

Reasons for Failure:

  • A bonnet that cannot be safely secured in the closed position
  • An excessively deteriorated, ineffective or insecure (bonnet) retaining device

Doors

MOT Test of Doors

  • Both front doors must be openable from the inside and outside and all doors must latch securely.
  • a passenger door must open from the outside using relevant control
  • All door hinges, catches and pillars to be assessed for door readily opening and closing, and security

Tailgates, bootlids etc.

All these items, including the tailboards and dropsides of trucks must be securable in the closed position.

Body Condition and Security

MOT Test of Vehicle Structure, Body condition and security

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

Corrosion
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.

Battery
Reason for failure:

  • insecure
  • leaking electrolyte


Wiring
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.

Engine mountings

An engine mounting which is missing or seriously deteriorated, resulting in excessive movement. Also includes gearbox mountings that provide essential support for the engine.

Checked for:

  • Presence
  • Security
  • Condition


Reason for failure:
Mounting which is

  • Missing
  • seriously deteriorated resulting in excessive movement


Engine Mounting bracket which is

  • Missing
  • insecure
  • fractured
  • 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

Seats

MOT Test of Seats

  • 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.

Seat Belts and Restraint Systems

MOT Test of Seat Belts including Supplementary Restraint Systems (SRS

Seat Belts

Test Description
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.

Test method:
Check for

  • Presence and condition of any SRS

Turn on ignition and check for

  • Presence and operation of Malfunction Iindicator Lamp (MIL)

Check for
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:
  • Inoperative
  • Indicating malfunction

Brakes

MOT Test of Brakes

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 warnimg 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:

  • Function
  • Sequence of operation

Footbrake

  • 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

Parking brake
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:

  • missing
  • insecure
  • 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

Warning Lamp

  • Missing
  • 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

General
All components checked for security, condition and operation.

Reason for failure:

  • Component inappropriately repaired or modified
  • Insecurely mounted
  • Excessively weakened
  • Damaged
  • 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.

Windscreen

MOT Test of Windscreen

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

motwindscreen-large

Above: MOT Windscreen Test - areas where damage is allowed

Washers and wipers

  • Operation
  • 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).

Mirrors

MOT Test of Mirrors

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

  • Secure
  • 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 TypeDate of First UseRequirements
Passenger vehicles with less than 8 passenger seatsFirst used before 1/8/78At least one mirror/device in any of the above positions.
Any passenger vehicle(excluding buses and minibuses)First used on or after 1/8/78Two mirrors/devices, one of which must be in position  'a'.
Passenger vehicles with 8 or morepassenger seats (excluding buses and minibuses)

Any age

Goods vehicles
Buses and minibusesFirst used before 1/8/83An exterior mirror/device fitted on both the offside and the nearside ('a' and 'b').
First used on or after 1/8/83


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.

Additional mirrors
Any mirrors additional to the obligatory mirrors are not subject to this inspection.

Suspension

MOT Test of Suspension

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.

Exhaust and Emissions

MOT Test of Exhaust and Emissions

The exhaust system will fail the MOT if:

  • Part of the system missing or excessively deteriorated
  • A catalytic converter is missing where one was fitted as standard (on vehicles subject to a full cat test only)
  • Mounting are 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 liekly to enter the driver or passenger area.

Emissions

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.

Fuel System

MOT Test of Fuel System

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.

    MOT Motorcycle Testing

    Motorcycle Testing - Around the machine

    d) Lower front wheel and go to right side of vehicle and check: Frame, VIN, seat and foot rest Exhaust system Final drive (if fitted to RHS of machine) Rear wheel, tyre and brake Fuel system for leaks, engine running and engine off. e) Raise the rear wheel and check: Rear wheel, rear brake/components and tyre condition Rear suspension and final drive f) At the rear check: Rear position lamp(s)/stop lamp(s)/reflectors and indicators Rear suspension Registration Plate   g) On the left of the machine check: Frame and Footrest Exhaust system Final drive (if fitted to LHS of machine) Rear wheel and rear wheel brake Rear tyre Fuel system for leaks, engine running and engine off.   h) At the front of the machine check: Wheel alignment Headlamp aim Brake performance   If a sidecar is fitted it will also be examined in a manner specified by VOSA with respect to Security, Suspension, Wheel Bearings and Wheel Alignment.

    Motorcycle Testing – Wheels

    Wheels – Reasons for MOT failure 1. a. deliberate modification, inadequate repair, excessive corrosion, damage or fracture of a road wheel which significantly reduces the original strength (see information column) b. a spoke which is missing, cracked, excessively loose, bent or corroded 2. An excessively distorted or eccentric bead rim. (see information column). 3. a. loose or missing wheel nuts, studs or bolts b. an insecure wheel.

    Motorcycle Testing – Sitting on the machine

    a) Sitting on machine check: All controls, switches and horn Front suspension, forks, handlebars and head bearings Fuel tank security, fuel filler cap security and rubber seal   b) At the front of the machine check: Front lights and indicators Front brake master cylinder (if fitted)   c) Place the machine on its stand and raise front wheel check: Steering, front forks and head bearings Front brake and wheel bearings Wheel and tyre condition

    UK MOT Testing Manuals Online


    If you need more detailed information about the UK MOT Test, such as the method of inspection and reasons for failure, click on the relevant links below.

     UK MOT Testing Guide

    If you want to become a Tester or to set up a Testing Station, what you need to do will be found in the Guide. It will also tell you how you will be expected to run the Testing Station and as a Tester what will happen if you do not carry out an MOT Test correctly – a disciplinary code.

    UK Motorcycle Inspection Manual

    The MOT examination for motorcycles is considerably more basic than that for cars and light commercial vehicles. This Manual covers the items checked, method of inspection and reasons for rejection.

    UK Car and Light Commercial Vehicle Inspection Manual

    This Manual covers the items checked, method of inspection and reasons for rejection for MOT Testing cars and light commercial vehicles.

    MOT Testing Tips

    wheel bearing

    Hint: If you want the Tester to look at your wheel nuts (visual inspection only), you must remove the hub caps – otherwise he is not able to examine them.