The complete guide to your MOT test


A Ministry of Transport Test (or MOT test) is a compulsory condition in the UK made by the Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency. With a main purpose of keeping all cars safe and secure as well as them meeting environmental standards and the vehicle not being a risk to its driver or other users of the road.

In an annual car MOT test, the main things that are tested include; Brakes, Steering & Suspensions, Tyres & Wheels, Lights & Indicators, Seats, Seat Belts & Horn, Windscreen Wipers, Exhaust & Fuel Emissions, Body Structure inc spoilers, mirrors and bumpers, Drivers view of the road, Registration Plates and Vehicle Identification Number.

An MOT test does not cover the engine, clutch or gear box – these are inspected and repaired during a car service.


Your MOT test must be carried out by a garage or mechanic permitted to perform MORE tests and a certificate must be provided in order for the vehicle to pass. If your car doesn’t pass the MOT test, it will be recorded on the MOT database and the test centre will provide you with a VT30 (an MOT refusal) certificate. This states that your car failed it’s MOT tests and the reasons why. It is the responsibility of the owner of the car to get the failure points fixed. For a partial retest, the car must be repaired and re tested within 10 days, after the 10 day period, the car will need to go through another full MOT test.

Driving without a valid MOT certificate may invalidate your car insurance and could see you banned from driving, or leave you facing a £2,500 penalty and 3 points on your license.

The only time it is okay to drive without an MOT is if you’ve already pre-booked a re-test or booked your vehicle in to have the defects fixed.


If you’re not happy with the results of your MOT test, it’s worth raising any issues with the test centre before repairs are carried out. Alternatively, there is an appeals procedure where you can log an official complaint with the SVSA within 14 days of the initial test. Once this is received, they will; organise an appointment within 5 days to recheck your vehicle, but you will need to pay the full test fee again. They will also send you an inspection report detailing any vehicle defects and advisory problems to be looked at.


Not all vehicles need to have an MOT test.

Cars that are less than 3 years old are exempt from tests, along with any good vehicles powered by electricity, vehicles built before 1960 and tractors. Large vehicles like buses, trailers and lorries all require an annual vehicle test.

For more information on MOT’s, including how they work, when your test is due and your cars MOT history, visit the GOV website.

Is your car due for an MOT test? Drive into any of our depots today!