Checks to Make Before Your Car Goes for an MOT

The date of your MOT is fast approaching, so why not make sure you stand the best possible chance of passing, by performing a few key checks before the big day.


  1. Tyres and wheels

    For optimum safety, it’s important that your tyres are the correct size for your model of car. Not only this, but tyres must be in good condition with no bulges, lumps or cuts, and must also have a tread depth of 1.6mm for the entire way round – this can be checked by inserting a 20p coin into the groove, and if the edge of the coin is obscured, your tread depth is at legal levels.

  2. Lights

    All lights need to be fully operational and the correct colour, and this includes headlights, reverse lights, indicators, and parking lights. You may need to enlist the help of another person to help you test them. Giving them a thorough clean before the MOT is also wise.

  3. Wipers and windscreen

    Cast a glance over your windscreen and see if you can spot any cracks or damage – any marks or blemishes over 40mm, or over 10mm in the area the wipers cover, may result in the failure of your MOT. The wipers themselves should not be torn or damaged and should be able to fulfil their role of clearing the windows of rain.

  4. Registration plates

    The numbers on your registration plates should be easy to read and unobscured, and not loose in any way – make sure they are clean and well-fastened to the car.

  5. Doors

    Check that all car doors can open and close from inside and outside the car without hindrances, and once shut, remain firmly closed.

  6. Vehicle structure

    Take the time to walk around you car, examining the vehicle body for any signs of damage, corrosion or sharp edges. This is to ensure that nothing will affect braking, steering, or pose a risk to other road users.

  7. Under the bonnet

    Have a look under the bonnet and ensure that the oil and brake fluid are topped up. Make sure too also check the windscreen washer bottle/levels. These will be checked as part of the MOT emissions test.


  1. Warning lights

    Any warning lights in your car are an invaluable and important way of being informed of when something has failed in your car.

  2. Seats

    Ensure all seats are secure and adjustable, and also able to be fixed into the upright position.

  3. Seatbelts

    Seatbelts must be free of damage, and react in the correct way when pulled on.

  4. Horn

    Give your horn a quick toot to check it’s working.

  5. Mirrors

    Check that all mirrors are intact, with the view undamaged and no edges exposed.

Watling Tyres are your premier tyre dealer and autocentre, with 15 branches across South London, Sussex, Kent and Surrey. Established over 55 years ago, our growing expertise and knowledge has seen us become experts at MOTs, auto servicing, and tyre replacement. To find out more, simply contact our friendly team today.


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