09 August, 2018

New MOT rules introduced this May mean it’s going to be easier to fail. Now vehicles will have their faults judged against new ‘Dangerous’, ‘Major’ and ‘Minor’ defect categories, with ‘Major’ and ‘Dangerous’ defects causing a vehicle to automatically fail the test. Dashboard monitoring is also stricter, so if you have any warning lights on when your vehicle’s having its MOT, it will fail. There are also stricter limits for emissions from diesel cars: any diesel cars that show smoke coming from their exhaust will automatically fail and those fitted with a diesel particulate filter (DPF), which captures and stores exhaust soot, will get a ‘Major’ fault if the MOT tester can see smoke of any colour coming from the exhaust or finds evidence that the DPF has been tampered with.

Here’s the full list of new MOT checks now in force:

• reversing lights on vehicles first used from September 2009
• daytime running lights on vehicles first used from March 2018
• front fog lights on vehicles first used from March 2018
• prop shafts
• bumper security and condition
• rear drive shafts on all vehicles
• cab security
• cab steps
• floor condition
• undertray security
• noise suppression material
• emission control equipment
• engine malfunction indicator lamp
• fluid leaks posing an environmental risk

Speaking about the changes RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: “It is important everyone quickly gets to grips with the changes to the MOT, and that test centres and garages do a good job of explaining the new fault categories so motorists understand correctly the severity of faults with their vehicles.

“Changes to the MOT that make vehicles using our roads safer are undoubtedly a positive step so we hope that testers everywhere interpret and apply the new rules fairly and consistently. The last thing we want to see is a lowering of MOT standards and an increase in the number of unroadworthy vehicles on our roads.

“There is rightly a lot of attention at the moment on ‘harmful to health’ nitrogen dioxide emissions from diesel vehicles so stricter rules should help to make sure vehicles aren’t emitting more than they should be. Those unlucky enough to discover their vehicle has a faulty or tampered with diesel particulate filter will, unfortunately for them, be burning a big hole in their pocket due to the very high cost of replacement.

“Drivers who have a diesel vehicle with a DPF should make sure it is regularly given a good run at motorway or dual carriageway speeds so the filter is automatically cleared of any clogged up soot. This is very important if the vehicle is predominantly used for short journeys on local roads.”

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