The MOT Test is Changing

MOT test

This year the MOT test is changing. The Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) is  making the changes that will come into force on the 20th May 2018 and an updated inspection manual will be introduced for all MOT testers across the UK.

The test is changing to bring it into line with an EU Directive called the EU Roadworthiness Package.

But what changes will this new MOT test include?


New MOT fault categories

There will be three new fault categories:

  • Minor
  • Major
  • Dangerous.

The DVSA say these have put in place to help drivers do the right thing, as in not simply drive away from the garage and not take action on the repairs that need to be made.

A minor fault would be flagged up on the MOT certificate with other advisory notes about what needs to be done. Major and dangerous defects will mean an automatic MOT fail. Major faults will require the vehicle to be fixed and retested.   Whereas a dangerous defect will mean the car will be deemed too dangerous to drive, making it a criminal offence to drive on the road.


Other MOT test checks

Brake discs will be tested for significant wear and tear and will also be considered a major or even dangerous fault if found to be obviously worn.

There will be a check on the reverse lights, and will result in a fail if they aren’t working.

Steering blocks will be tested.

Emission testing will become tougher. Particularly for diesel fuel cars, in a drive by the government to reduce emissions.  If ‘visible smoke of any colour’ is emitted from the car’s exhaust, it will be failed as a major fault.

It will be an automatic fail if any diesel has a faulty diesel particulate filter, or has one removed. A diesel particulate filter (DPF) works to remove the soot from the exhaust gas of a diesel engine –  the dirty part of the emissions that causes damage to health.

DPFs in diesel cars become clogged easily and therefore require a lot of potentially expensive upkeep. Some drivers choose to remove them completely. This is already a criminal offence punishable with a financial penalty and until the new rules come into force it was always just a visual inspection to check if the DPF in fitted.


What can you do to ensure your vehicle passes?

Before taking your car for its MOT it is always worth doing some basic checks:

Tyre tread is something that often leads to a fail so it is worth checking these before the test.

Check your windscreen for cracks or chips, check the wipers are still working well.

Tyre tread is something that often leads to a fail so it is worth checking these before the test.

Check your horn works. This is a very common fail item.

Check for any blown lightbulbs and replace them if necessary.

Ensure your fuel is at a decent level before taking it for the test. An MOT can’t be carried out on an empty or nearly empty fuel tank.

Make sure the seatbelts work smoothly and correctly.

Look around the vehicle to see if there are any leaks.

For diesel car owners (or if you’re considering buying a diesel) check the DPF (diesel particulate filter) if you have one. If your dash light is flashing orange then it may be becoming blocked, which could cost a lot of money.


Driving without an MOT is an offence and could land you in hot water with fines of up to £1,000.

If you have any questions about this or any other driving matters, you can contact us on 01926 886007 or by filling out our contact form here