All vehicles within the the UK requires an MOT test to ensure that it is in a safe roadworthy condition.

motConsisting of a number of checks which have been designed to ensure that the vehicle being tested satisfies road safety and environmental standards which are stipulated by law, the first MOT test must be completed when a vehicle is 3 years old and must be completed on an annual basis thereafter. The test itself has been radically updated and now includes warning lights on the instrument cluster.

Under the VOSA requirements an MOT will test too many important items to list but include:

  • Emissions & Exhaust – A vehicle’s exhaust must be secure without any serious leaks. Dependant on the age and fuel type of the vehicle being tested, all vehicle emissions should at least meet the necessary requirements.
  • Lights – All required lights must be tested to ensure that they are secure and in good working condition.
  • Brakes – Brakes will be tested to ensure their efficiency, operation and performance meet legal requirements.
  • Tyres – It is essential that tyres are tested to ensure the correct size, condition, type along with the correct tread depth.
  • Seat Belts – Seat belts are a compulsory safety measure for vehicles and will be checked for security, operation and condition
  • Steering/suspension – The steering/suspension must be in an acceptable condition.
  • Windscreen – This will be checked for all items affecting the driver’s view of the road; its condition, the wipers and the washers.
  • Warning lights – Engine management, ABS, traction/stability control, TPS and air bag lights must not be on.
  • Horn – Horns must be operational and of a suitable volume to be heard by pedestrians and other vehicles.
  • Registration Plate – The number plate must be secure, legible & for all letters to conform to the approved font design with the correct spacing between them.
  • Mirrors & Doors – Mirrors are secure and visible from the driver’s seat and that they are not distorted or damaged. Both front doors must be operational from inside and outside the vehicle.

Despite the MOT Test, it is crucial for all vehicle owners to understand that a recently passed MOT does not imply that a vehicle may safely be driven without service for another whole year (indeed, any subsequent suspicion of problems with any of a vehicle’s safety systems should be immediately investigated).