If you have been driving for ten, twenty, or even thirty years, the MOT is just an accepted and established part of life and will have been so even back in the 1990s. The MOT test was initiated in 1960 in an attempt to ensure that the cars using the UK’s ever expanding road network were roadworthy. And it has been, by and large, a successful ploy: road deaths plummeted far beyond what might have been expected, even with advances in traffic control and vehicle manufacturing, both of which has helped reduce deaths and severe injury on the road. This helped reduce accidents in busy cities of the UK such as London too.
If you have ever wondered why you have to take your car for an MOT each year, here are five important things you need to know about the MOT test.
It’s a Legal Requirement
By law, every car older than three must have a valid MOT certificate. Without it, your car can be seized and crushed, you can be financially penalized, receive penalty points on your license or even be gaoled, depending on the circumstances. When you consider the fact that skipping your MOT, which usually costs less than £60, could earn you a hefty £1,000 fine (and that’s just a middle-of-the-road fine, the most egregious offenses can see you receive an eye-watering £2,500 fine!) then the MOT suddenly seems like a most reasonable alternative!
MOTs Keep You Safe
And there’s another reason for complying willingly with this law: the whole premise of the MOT is to keep you, and other road users, safe on the UKs roads by ensuring that your vehicle is sturdy enough to withstand an unexpected impact, get safely to the roadside and stop in a timely manner. It is hard to complain about laws designed to look after you and others!
MOTs Cannot be Overcharged
Because it is a legal requirement, the price of the MOT is capped by the government. At present, that cap sits at £54.85 – so if you are ever asked to pay more than this amount just for an MOT, you should refuse to pay it. Of course, any work done on your car in order to pass the MOT is liable for the garage’s usual prices, the £54.85 refers only to the test. You can, however, find MOTs for less than this amount, especially if you bundle your test with other products, such as a major service. If you are looking to get your MOT in London you can avail at DAT Tyres (phone 02089693030), and you will soon be back on the road and legally compliant once more.
There’s No Grace Period
There is something of an urban legend that you have a set period (two weeks is the usually quoted figure) during which you can drive your car with no MOT. This is not true at all. You must have a valid MOT certificate in force every moment from the time your car turns three until it is ready for the scrap heap. During the Covid pandemic in 2020/2021, the government did allow a six month pause on MOTs, mainly because the MOT inspectors were meant to be at home, isolating and allowing the virus’s spread to die down – but this expired and as soon as MOT testing centres were reopened, drivers were expected to book their MOT as quickly as they could.
You Can Keep Your Anniversary Date
It’s not all bad news though: you can keep your anniversary date. This is because you can book your MOT for any time in the 30 days before the expiry of the certificate and keep the same renewal date. In short, you will be given a certificate for around 13 months, so you will have plenty of time for next year’s renewal too.