person with clipboard checking the engine of a car in a workshop

How to Check Your Car’s MOT Status

Most vehicles in the UK are legally required to hold a valid MOT certificate. And in the bustle of modern life, it’s extremely easy to lose track of when you last took your car in for its annual check-up. That’s when a quick MOT status check comes in handy. Here, we explain how to check your car’s MOT status, as well as reasons you may want to keep an eye on your renewal date. 

A car drives past a sign for an MOT testing centre

What is a car’s MOT status? 

Once a car turns three years old in the UK, it needs to pass an annual MOT check to ensure it’s safe to be driven on the roads. A registered MOT inspector or mechanic will review a wide range of different parts and features of your car, from the brakes to the windscreen wipers. If it doesn’t pass the MOT, then the issues need to either be fixed, or the car won’t be legally permitted back on the roads. 

When people refer to a car’s MOT status, they’re referring to whether it holds a valid MOT certificate and is legally permitted to drive. 

How can I check my MOT status?

Checking the MOT status of your car (or any car) is really simple. You just head online to the Gov.UK MOT status checker and type in the registration of the vehicle you’re checking. The site will provide you with the make, model and colour of the vehicle to confirm it’s the right one, and then will let you know whether it holds a valid MOT certificate or not. This reg check takes just a few seconds from start to finish. 

How long does it take my MOT status to update online?

You can usually expect the online MOT status page to update on the same day you get your certificate. However, it can sometimes take up to five days to refresh, so don’t worry if you’re not seeing it straight away. If it takes longer than five days, you’ll need to contact the DVSA to rectify. 

Why do I need to know my MOT status?

With all the life admin we each need to complete, it can be tough to remember when your next MOT is due. If it’s of interest, you can sign up to receive a text message or email from the DVLA to let you know when your MOT renewal date is coming up, but you may want to know in advance when to plan it in. That’s why it’s handy to be able to quickly check online. 

However, it’s not just your own car you may want to check. Perhaps you’re looking to buy a second-hand vehicle, which you’ve been told is fully MOT certified; it’s sensible to check for yourself how long is left on the MOT just in case the amount of time left on the current certificate may have been exaggerated. Likewise, if you’re selling your vehicle, you don’t need to have the actual certificate on hand, you can simply show potential buyers online, or encourage them to check for themselves. 

As easy as it is to check your car’s MOT status, if it’s looking likely that your motor won’t pass its next check and isn’t worth the cost of fixing, this could be a good time to consider selling it for scrap. Your car doesn’t need a valid MOT to be scrapped, as it gets towed to the scrapyard and most likely won’t drive on the roads again. Here at Scrap Car Comparison, we work with a huge network of scrap dealers across the UK, to make sure you can get the best price for scrapping your car, even if it doesn’t have an MOT. So, get a quote for scrapping your car today. 

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