If you are due an MOT on your vehicle this autumn, specifically between September and December, the AA-approved garages group is suggesting you book as soon as possible. The season has been dubbed frantic fall, with over 10 million cars, vans, and minibuses needing an MOT in these four months.
The problem is not being helped by the number of vehicles failing the MOT in the first instance. Around 29% fail the first checks, and the defects are often very simple, easy to spot even by those without mechanical training and very cheap to fix. Sorting these in advance means that your car is more likely to sail through its MOT the first time. To try and help motorists, the AA has put together data from the 2021/2022 MOT records and found the top reasons for cars to fail. During this period, 3.75 million cars, vans or other vehicles failed the MOT on the first go.
Top Reasons for MOT Failure
This equates to 3 in 10 vehicles failing their initial MOT and requiring remedial work and re-testing to pass. At a time when money is tight and the cost of living is spiralling, these simple driver checks could save you money. You may also find that it is hard to get your car booked in due to this frantic fall, and should it fail, you may encounter long waiting times for your garage to do the remedial works and arrange the retest. The spokesperson for AA-approved garages said that she fully understood the decisions made by drivers. With budgets tight, it is very tempting to leave minor repairs and hope they go unnoticed. However, this can be a false economy, as something that could have been quickly and cheaply fixed can escalate and require more complex work with a much higher price tag. You could also find your vehicle becomes unsafe and causes an accident that is a lot worse in the long run.
Face the Problem
The best course of action is to face the problem head-on. Many garages will happily run a pre-MOT check, so you don't spend the money in advance. Others will recommend that, because the cost of an MOT is not too high, it's best to get the full breakdown of issues and allow the car to fail. However, as soon as you see any potential problem, whether you think your tires are getting bald or you see a dashboard warning light, you should take immediate action to remedy the situation. Some issues are not only mechanical and lead to MOT failures but could see you pulled over by the police and given a fine, so overall, it is better to deal with problems as they arise.