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How to avoid an obvious MOT fail

Garage servicing

Eight of the 10 most common causes of MOT failures amongst UK drivers could be easily identified and resolved ahead of the test.

According to research from the AA Garage Guide, the AA’s MOT, repairs and car servicing garage finder, issues with wipers and washers, bulbs and tyres are among the top causes of test fails.

Top 10 most common causes for an MOT failure

CODE

FAILURE ITEM

IDENTIFIABLE?

8.2

Wipers and washers

Yes

2.4.G

Suspension arms and linkages, sub frames etc

No

1.1.C

Registration plate bulb

Yes

1.1.A

Front and rear position bulb

Yes

4.1.E

Tyre tread – pattern, breadth and depth

Yes

1.2

 Brake light

Yes

1.8

Headlamp Aim

Yes

2.4.C.1a

Suspension – Coil springs

No

1.7

Headlamps

Yes

4.1.D

Condition of tyres

Yes

AA Garage Guide analysed 146,000 MOT records of UK-registered vehicles owned by AA members in May and June this year.

Across the UK, 44% of vehicles failed their last MOT test and Great Yarmouth (53.8%), Weston-Super-Mare (52.6%) and Edinburgh (51.8%) saw the highest MOT failure rates, while Romford (34.8%), Solihull (35.3%) and Bury St. Edmunds (35.6%) experienced the lowest failure rates.

“There are countless numbers of potential reasons for vehicles failing their MOT, but it’s shocking to see that the number one cause identified came down to the humble windscreen wipers and washers,” said AA Garage Guide Olli Astley.

“An empty screen wash or smearing wipers are easy to spot – and fix – at home ahead of the statutory roadworthiness test, so there’s really no excuse for failing on such an easily solvable problem.

“Tyres and headlights have also been highlighted as popular problem areas and are therefore worth checking in advance of your car’s MOT.

“Make sure that your tyre pressures are correct and that wear across the whole of the tyre surface isn’t below the 1.6mm legal minimum, and that any blown lights are replaced.

“You should make sure you’ve addressed any previous ‘advisories’ – that’s the maintenance work recommended by the garage during your car’s last MOT.”

About Gareth Herincx

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who's worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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