The New MOT Test

The New MOT Test

By Swansway Motor Group 30-04-2018

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From Sunday, May 20, the MOT will be changed and the new tests performed on vehicles will have five major changes.

How is the MOT Test going to change?

From Sunday, May 20, there will be 5 major changes to the MOT test:

  • Faults will be classified as Minor, Major and Dangerous - Vehicles with a Dangerous or Major fault will fail.
  • Diesel emissions - if the tester sees smoke of any colour coming from the exhaust of a disel car with a DPF, it's a Major fault and a fail.
  • New areas will be tested - including whether brake fluid has been contaminated, if tyres are under-inflated, fluid leaks posing an enviornmental risk and more.
  • New Style MOT Certificate - the new layout will list the defects and make it easier to understand any faults found.
  • Exemption for 40 year old vehicles - cars, vans and motorbikes which are over 40 years old and haven't been substantially changed, will be exempt from the MOT Test.

How to stop your car or van failing it's MOT

The best way to stop your car or van failing is to check it over yourself in advance. Use our Minute or Two Check to give your vehicle the best chance of passing the first time around.


Minor, Major and Dangerous Faults

The first is that faults will now be classed as Dangerous, Major or Minor. A Dangerous fault means the vehicle is putting you and others at immediate danger and/or is a serious risk to the environment. You will not be allowed to drive it until it’s been fixed. It probably goes without saying, that the vehicle will fail its MOT test.

The second category, Major, will also result in a fail and the fault will need fixing before the vehicle can be driven.

The third, a Minor, is a problem picked up by the tester which, although not an immediate safety or environmental concern, will only get worse; you’ll be advised to have it fixed as soon as possible. A vehicle with a Minor will pass the test and get an MOT certificate.


Diesel Emission Testing

One of the biggest changes will be for diesels. From this month there will be stricter limits on emissions from diesel cars, with a diesel particulate filter (DPF). Your vehicle will get a Major fault, and therefore fail, if the MOT tester can see smoke of any colour coming from the exhaust or finds evidence that the DPF has been tampered with.

Dirty smoke coming out of a car exhaust


New Areas of Testing in an MOT

  • Daytime running lights (on vehicles first used from March 1, 2018)
  • Obviously under-inflated tyres
  • Contaminated brake fluid
  • Fluid leaks posing an environmental risk
  • Brake pad warning lights or missing brake pads or discs
  • Reversing lights (on vehicles first used from September 1, 2009)
  • Headlight washers (on vehicles first used from September 1, 2009)

Silver car with headlamp washer being operated


New MOT Certificate

The MOT certificate will change with the new style listing the new types of defects and making it easier to understand any defects found.

New MOT Certificate alongside exisiting MOT certificate


Most 40 Year Old Vehicles Exempt

Some vehicles over 40 years old won’t need an MOT. Cars, vans, motorcycles and other light passenger vehicles won’t need an MOT if they’re over 40 years old (first registered after May 31, 1978) and have not been substantially changed.  At the moment, only vehicles first built before 1960 are exempt.


Remember: You can be fined up to £1,000 for driving a vehicle without a valid MOT.

The 'minute or two' Check


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