Getting your driving license opens up your world to so many possibilities. You can travel without delay, choose your own route, and travel whenever and wherever you like. But owning a car also comes with a number of responsibilities, one of which is the necessity to get your car MOTed once a year from its third year. You need to have a proper MOT certificate if you are driving in major UK cities such as London. Here are the facts you need to know about your MOT check.
What Is It?
The MOT test – short for Ministry of Transport test – was introduced in 1960 when the first motorways allowed the great number of decrepit vehicles on the UK’s roads to attempt speeds not previously possible before. This had led to a sharp increase of accidents, many of them serious, and accident investigators had put the blame squarely on vehicles that were in serious need of maintenance or scrapping. The initial tests looked at just three items: brakes, steering and lights, on vehicles older than ten. Current tests examine upwards of thirty items (find the full checklist here) on vehicles older than three years old. The test is basically aimed at reducing the impact of your vehicle on the road, whether through ensuring emissions are minimal or by your being easily visible and therefore avoidable, and also your being able to steer the car to safety and stop it in an appropriate place on the side of the road. The UK’s roads are dramatically safer now, thanks to the enforcement of the MOT test.
How Much Is It?
The government puts out the MOT cost each year: it is currently £54.85 for regular vehicles. However, many garages offer cheaper MOTs, and may even throw in a free or heavily discounted MOT for a car that is being fully serviced by their mechanic, before the MOT inspector begins the test. There are many reliable garages which perform MOT, you can also book your car’s MOT in London with Iverson Tyres.
What Happens If I Don’t Get My MOT?
Not having a valid MOT usually means also not having valid insurance as insurance cover depends on your vehicle being legally compliant. Should you be found driving in such a non-compliant state, you could be fined (up to £2,500) or lose your car entirely, as the police can seize and destroy any vehicles. If they seize your car and you do not want it destroyed, you will have to pay a £200 release fee plus £20 per day – on top of having to have any faults remedied! It is really not worth the risk, given the relatively low cost of the MOT test!
How Do I Book an MOT?
Booking an MOT is easy. Once you know the date by which your MOT is due – it will be the same every year, and is usually within the month before the vehicle’s initial purchase date, some three years before. If you have bought a car that was declared SORN (no longer in use), the MOT will have expired, and you will need to organize a test before the car can even be parked on the side of the road. Once your vehicle has its certificate, you will then use that date as your ‘anniversary’ for future MOTs. You can book your MOT up to 30 days in advance without losing your anniversary, as you will be issued with an MOT certificate that is effective for thirteen months.