As a motorist, the main test your vehicle will face is the MOT. If you take care of your vehicle, your MOT shouldn’t be too much to worry about, but, unfortunately, there’s no guaranteed way to ensure your motor will pass its MOT every time.
Luckily, however, some of the most common MOT pitfalls can be managed and checked in advance, preventing any unpleasant surprises from occurring on the big day.
Electrics and Lights
Unsurprisingly the most common faults found with vehicles during MOTs is with lights and other electrical aspects. They’re one of the most important too, without them you’ll find yourself in tricky situation when driving at night, putting yourself at high risk of a collision should your brake lights go.
It’s recommended that you check these regularly and definitely before an MOT, as it could mean the difference between a pass or fail.
As one of the most vital safety features in your car, keeping your brakes in check is vital. While broken cables can be tricky, newer models can be more easily adjusted so it won’t necessarily be too much of a financial hit should you need to fix anything.
An easy way to check your brakes is to see if they sink to the floor as this could indicate leaking in the system. Another sign of something amiss is if you can feel your motor pulling to one side when you brake, or if they growl. In both situations, your brake pads will need checking over and potentially replacing.
Cracked tyres with perishing sidewalls, cuts and punctures or bulges can all cause your vehicle to fail. And that’s not forgetting the tread of your tyre which is responsible for keeping you connected to the road.
The outer sidewalls of the tyre are easy to check but don’t forget to check the centre tread and, if you notice any unusual patterns, you may need to realign the wheel. For your tread, make sure your tread depth is 1.6mm but ideally for high performance, they should be 3mm. You can easily monitor this by comparing the tread with the indicator.
Vehicle suspension is one of the fastest growing fail points. Manufactures have been working to improve suspension, improving the ride and handling of their vehicles but the newer models, whilst satisfying the need for smoother rides, have been wearing out more quickly.
Identifying a suspension problem will require attention to detail. If your ride starts to feel bumpier, if your vehicle pulls or squeaks when turning or if you have uneven tread wear, you may need to get it checked. Another more direct way to test is by braking abruptly in a safe place and taking note to see if your front-end dips – if it does, there’s a potential issue.
We recommend checking your car over for these faults about once a month. If you spot them early, they’re usually fairly simple, easy and cheap to fix.
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