I thought I'd start a thread about peoples concerns over MOT's.
There are many myths about what it is checked and what can fail an MOT and I'll start with some of the most common ones....
MYTH;'I don't have a spare wheel/my spare tyre is illegal/flat and will fail an MOT'
REALITY:A spare can only fail an MOT if it is stored outside of the vehicle and is insecure,i.e if it is held in a cage under the car and is deemed to be liable to come adrift from the car.There are no other reasons for failing a car on an MOT.The spare can be missing(many modern cars aren't fitted with them from new anyway
,flat,bald,the wrong size etc,etc.It only becomes a problem when the spare is fitted on to an axle,and then it's not a spare anymore!.
MYTH;'One of my front foglights isn't working and will fail an MOT'
REALITY:Front foglights are not testable as part of an MOT.The only legal requirement for foglights is that vehicles are fitted with a rear foglight that is either in the centre(Peugeot 206
) or to the offside of the vehicle and that functions.
MYTH;'I can present my car in any state to the garage and they will have to MOT it'
REALITY;If a car cannot be inspected properly or safely,then the garage can refuse to test it.If the boot is filled up with 14 bags of shopping and it stops the tester from properly checking a seat belt mounting(or similar),then he should refuse to test the car.Also,if the vehicle is so dirty that he can't properly check testable items on a car,i.e the rear suspension is completely caked in mud,then the same should happen.If for any reason the car is deemed to be unsafe to test(i.e has a large fuel leak etc),or is likely to cause damage (i.e a major engine
leak),the test will be aborted.
MYTH;'The MOT test is veiled in secrecy and is only a means of garages to make money'
REALITY;If anyone wants to read the MOT testers manual which explains the way a test is carried out and the way items are tested with pass/fail criteria,then it can be openly purchased from VOSA.You can watch your car being tested at all test stations(it's a legal requirement to provide a viewing area for customers),although your not supposed to ask questions/talk to the tester whilst they are carrying out a test.
.The MOT is primarily there for your safety,and although there are garages that disregard the MOT rules and break the law,they will always eventually get found out by VOSA.If you ever have any problem with an MOT,contact them directly(details are on the back of the pass/failure/advise forms),and they will always follow up your complaint.
I'll be adding posts to this thread periodically,but if anyone else would like to add their thoughts/experiences,please do.