Are you aware that most of MOT fails are as a result of faulty light bulbs? Save money on your car repair and MOT by making sure you’re not failing your MOT tests for reasons that could be easily avoided.
Problem with headlights is the most common cause of MOT failure – normally because of faulty light bulbs that you could easily fix yourself. Second on the list of common MOT fails is tyres. Either there is damage to the tyres, which makes it dangerous to drive on or the tread depth is below the legal limit.
Other reasons for fails can include seatbelts, brakes and windscreen wiper blades. As a car owner, there are a lot of small checks you can do on your own before your MOT. This will help highlight any area that needs attention and save you the stress of a failure, and a retest.
For starters, you can easily check your windscreen to see that they are free from cracks or damage, especially on the driver’s line of vision. Check side mirrors and make sure they are secure, intact and adjustable. Also check the condition of your wipers, lights and seatbelts.
Below are other easy DIY checks:
Your steering wheel should be able to turn easily – check. If you find out your steering wheel have to be moved excessively to change the direction of your car, you may have a worn steering rack or a loose nut – Check in with a car mechanic ASAP.
Power steering is supposed to make your steering feel easier and lighter when you have the car engine on. If there is a loss of power steering, then you may have worn or faulty pump, or low on power steering fluid.
Does your handbrake work the way it should? To check its performance, drive slowly for a short distance and then apply the handbrake. It should be able to slow the car, and hold it in place even when parked on a hill. Take note of the number of clicks when you pull the handbrake. It should be approximately 6 clicks for full engagement. If you experience hard pull or it gives in too easily, you may need an adjustment – any good click mechanic can handle that.
For the footbrake, check that you don’t have to press the pedal down to the floor for it to engage. More still, as you hold your foot in place, it shouldn’t creep further down. Any of these is an indication of a leak in the brake system, which is dangerous. Ensure you attend to it before a MOT. Also, if you discover that the pedal moves down too easily, you may have a worn brake pads or disc on your hands. In either case, you’ll need a brake disc replacement or brake pads replacement.
A quick check of your electricals will eliminate several common reasons for MOT fails. It includes:
- Headlights, side lights, brake lights, hazards and fog lights (check that all lights are working properly).
- Horn (check it works every time it’s pressed and quite audible).
- Instrument panel (check that indicators/lights are lit or unlit as it should when you turn on the ignition, for example fuel, oil, ABS, handbrake, airbags, etc.).
- Wipers and washers (blades should be in good condition and working properly, and washers unclogged and filled).
If for any reason you doubt the condition of your vehicle, regardless of whether MOT is due or not, endeavor to get it checked by a professional car mechanic in a reputable service center.