So you’ve just had your reminder through that your car’s MOT is due at the end of the month, and the annual anxiety and nerves settle in as you start to make preparations for the all-important test.
If you’re new to taking cars to MOTs, or if you’ve forgotten how any step of the process works over the past 12 months, then let us at Scrap Car Comparison talk you through the entire process and answer your most common questions.
How do I book an MOT appointment?
The very first job on the list is to find your nearest MOT centre and get yourself booked in. All MOT tests must be carried out at approved MOT Test Centres, and for most there will be a number in close proximity that will be able to carry out the service, meaning you can shop around for a potentially cheaper rate – test stations can charge a maximum of £54.85 for a test. To book the MOT simply contact the centre directly, ensuring your test is arranged before your current certificate runs out.
What do I need to take to my MOT appointment?
Thanks to modern technology and the availability of various documents online via the DVLA system, what you physically need to take to an MOT appointment can be as little as just the car itself. If you are able to provide the test centre with your latest MOT certificate and the V5C registration document then this could be helpful, but again these will be easily accessed on the test centre’s computer systems.
Can you book an MOT appointment on the same day?
As with any booking process, particularly when it comes to cars and garages, it’s always best to get your booking in as early as possible in case there are any availability issues. Some MOT centres will allow you to book a same day appointment for your MOT, but it’s also worth remembering that you can get your MOT test sorted up to one month before your current one expires. For example, if your MOT runs out on the 24th March, the earliest you can get a test is the 25th February.
How to change an MOT appointment
Changing an MOT appointment is as simple as it is to book one in the first place, as long as the MOT centre in question has the availability to ensure your test is carried out before your current certificate expires.
However, if you’re looking to change the date of your MOT entirely, that’s where things get a little trickier. The only way you are able to get your MOT date changed is to book your appointment earlier than is needed to bring your renewal date forward. There is no way you can delay your MOT renewal date.
How to cancel an MOT appointment
To cancel an MOT appointment simply get in touch with the MOT test centre you arrange your appointment with. However, it’s worth noting that should your MOT run out before you are able to rearrange your appointment, driving your car on the public highway becomes illegal, unless you are driving it to a pre-arranged MOT test.
What happens at an MOT appointment?
The MOT is a general test to ensure your car is safe to be on the roads, and will see your vehicle put up against a series of strict parameters to make sure it meets the requirements to be deemed roadworthy. This will include a check of elements such as the electrics, steering, tyres, brakes and much more – for a detailed view on what gets checked at an MOT test, read more here.
Am I allowed passengers when going to an MOT appointment?
There is no reason you can’t carry passengers with you to an MOT appointment, in fact sometimes it could be advisable if you’re going to be sitting around at the test centre waiting for the results to come through as having someone to talk to is better than reading the same issue of whatever motoring magazine is lying around in the waiting room over and over again. A popular option is to have a friend follow you in their own car to the test centre so they can take you elsewhere, either back to work or to lunch, for example, so you’re not kicking your heels awaiting your result.
Can I drive my car until the MOT appointment?
Providing your MOT certificate is still in date, then you can drive your car right up until your MOT test itself, however if your previous certificate is now out of date, then driving the car is an offence. Cars are only road legal if they have a valid MOT certificate, tax and insurance, and driving without any of these can land you a hefty fine and a handful of points on your licence. If your previous MOT has lapsed, then you can only drive your car to a pre-booked MOT test.
How early can I arrive for an MOT appointment?
Most test centres will allow you to drop your car off first thing in the morning so your car can get sorted as early as possible for you, which can be incredibly handy if there are any failures or advisories that require your attention before you get back on the road. However, it’s worth checking with the individual centre on their own policy, as some may not appreciate you turning up early if you are booked in for a specific time.
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Can I change an MOT appointment?
You can book your car in for an MOT appointment up to one month before your the existing certificate runs out, minus one day. So you can change the appointment within this month-long timeframe. If you want to change the appointment to be further into the future, so that it falls outside of this one month time frame, this is problematic as you will be driving your car without a valid MOT, which is illegal.
Can I take an MOT test earlier?
The simple answer is no, you can’t book your car in for an MOT early. You can book an MOT up to a month before the certificate expires.