Below are the main things your MOT tester will go through and some you can be thought about before the test is done. Nearly half of failures encompass these basic maintenance checks and will help pass your MOT test.
Lamps, reflectors and electrical equipment
30% of all MOT failures are related to lighting and signalling. Check all your lights and get someone to help. Check your front, rear, brake, indicators, hazard and plate lights are operational. They must be; Correctly positioned, Secure, Not be obscured, Be in good condition, Show the correct colour (white or white with a bluish tinge), Not be adverseley affected by other lights and illuminate with a single move of the relevant switch. Pairs of light must work together with the same level, colour, size and shape of light.
Your headlights must be pointing at position 0 or lower for the dip and main beam light so as not to obscure other drivers vision.
It must be operational with a continuous note and loud enough for other drivers to hear.
Must be of the correct type, not be leaking its contents and securely fitted.
It should be secure and must not be damaged enough to cause a short circuit or become detached.
All electrical sockets must be in good condition and operate correctly, the tester will check this is operational for signalling, reversing, braking and rear fog lighting with the vehicle controls.
Before your test check all of these including the cars lights to see if thre are any bulb replacements or other problems.
Steering And Suspension
The steering mechanism will be moved to check all components in the system for wear or damage. If a steering wheel lock is fitted it will be checked to ensure it does not activate when driving. If it is fitted with power steering then the fluid reservoir will be checked for its minimum level.
The suspension system components will be checked for excessive distortion, corrosion and fractures.
9.6% of MOT tests fail due to brake issues. The whole breaking system is checked from the pedal to the brakes themselves and any warning light system. It will be tested on a rolling road for performance and efficiency.
Tyres And Wheels
10% of all MOT test failures are related to the tyres not being correct for the vehicle and its load rating.
The tread depth must be in the legal limit of greater than 1.6 mm and examined for lumps, bulges, tears or exposure of the cord, tread separation and cuts greater than 25 mm.
If run flat tyres are used the warning light must work correctly and the wheel must be in good general condition.
Before the test measure the tread depth with a gauge or ruler and ensure the tyre pressure is at the correct level for the vehicle and load.
All components and parts will be checked for security and condition.
Body, structure and general items
The body, chassis, engine mountings, seats and doors must be free from excessive corrosion and must not have any sharp edges.
It must be fitted at the front and rear and clearly legible to someone standing 20 metres away.
Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
It must be on display and legible in one of these locations, between the dashboard and windscreen, on a plate secured to the vehicle, or stamped or etched on the body or chassis.
A speedometer must be present and will be tested for illumination and operational for reading purposes.
Exhaust, Fuel And Emissions
The exhaust system must be secure and not leak. If your vehicle was fitted with a catalytic converter, it must still be present.
The fuel system will be checked and covers leaks and the fuel cap seal.
The mechanic conducting your test will use a test system to measure how much of a number of gasses and smoke exit the exhaust when being run. These results must fall between the legal limit required.
If the test results in too much dense blue or black smoke, this may result in your test failing.
6.6% of MOT tests fail and are due to issues with the road view.
Mirrors And Wipers
All mirrors must be secure and provide a good view to the rear and sides.
The wipers must clear a large enough area to give a good enough view of the road.
The windscreen must be clear and there must not be an obstruction in front of the driver larger than 10 mm and in the wiper blade area bigger than 40 mm. Before you bring your car in this can be checked along with the screenwash topped up and the wiper blades in good condition and operational.