Top tips to keep car on the road

Regular MOT checks are vital in ensuring that a vehicle is road safe and meets environmental standards.

Shockingly, however, 29 per cent of cars and vans on UK roads failed their Motoring experts have revealed the most common reasons that UK cars fail their MOT.

Regular MOT checks are vital in ensuring that a vehicle is road safe and meets environmental standards.

Shockingly, however, 29 per cent of cars and vans on UK roads failed their MOTs last year.

According to Macklin Motors, the most common issues with these failed vehicles were found in either the brakes, tyres, lights, or windscreen wipers.

So, to help you pass your next MOT test with flying colours, the motoring experts at Macklin Motors have outlined what drivers should be looking out for in each of these areas.

The number one reason that cars fail an MOT is due to an issue with the brakes, most likely the brake pads or discs.

During an MOT test, the condition of the brakes is tested to ensure they operate and perform correctly.

They are also checked to see if any inappropriate repairs or modifications have been made.

General wear and tear is the most likely culprit behind any brake issues.

Brake pads, in particular, get worn away over time and can be extremely dangerous to drive with.

If ignored, the issue could also damage the brake rotors or brake callipers, which are costly to repair.

To fail the MOT test, the brake lining or pad would need to be below 1.5mm.

Other reasons for failure include when brake pads are, insecure, contaminated with grease, or missing entirely

Tyres are another common culprit for MOT failure.

The test will check the condition, security, tread depth, tyre size, and type of your tyres to ensure they are road safe.

According to Macklin Motors, tyre tread is the most likely of these factors to get flagged on an MOT test, as it impacts the braking distance of your vehicle.

The tread depth is typically worn away through general wear and tear or by direct damage to the tyre.

The legal minimum tyre tread to pass your MOT is 1.6mm – however, most manufacturers recommend changing tyres when the tyre tread reaches 3mm to ensure maximum performance.

If you are unsure whether your tyres meet the minimum requirement, insert a 20p coin into the groove of the tyre.

If the rim of the coin is hidden, then the tread is deep enough to drive on.

When it comes to light checks, no stone is left unturned.

Headlights, sidelights, indicators, fog lights, brake lights, and registration plate lights are all checked in an MOT.

And, according to Macklin Motors’ data, vehicles commonly failed these checks when their lights were inoperative, faulty, broken, or even showing the wrong colour, in some rare instances.

Broken lights can significantly reduce your vision when driving, especially at night or during periods of low light, and will also impact other drivers’ ability to see you.

In fact, not only would broken lights fail your MOT, but you would also be breaking The Highway Code.

It states that drivers must use headlights when visibility is seriously reduced, ensuring all sidelights and registration plate lights are lit between sunset and sunrise.

It might seem like a small issue, but windscreen wipers are inspected in every MOT to check that the driver will have a clear view of the road in heavy downpours.

The most common issue is when the wiper blade is split or torn, which results in smearing or not clearing the windscreen effectively.

Luckily, these issues can be quickly resolved and at a low cost.

You should also bear in mind that wiper blades wear down naturally over time as they come into contact with dirt and grit from the roads, so it is important to replace them regularly.

To avoid failing your MOT over such a minor issue, we recommend testing your wipers and washers thoroughly before the inspection.

Calum Thomson, Group Aftersales Director at Vertu Motors PLC said: “To avoid any unpleasant and costly surprises, it’s crucial for drivers to be aware of the potential issues that could see their vehicle fail its MOT.

“We recommend regular vehicle maintenance throughout the year, which will help drivers keep a better eye on the condition of their car. This will not only increase the likelihood of passing your MOT but may also save you money in the long run by catching any potential issues before they become more expensive to fix.

“If you have any concerns about the health of your vehicle, or you’d like guidance on how to complete basic maintenance checks, it’s always a good idea to speak to an expert first.”

Head over to the Macklin Motors website to see their new and used cars on offer.


Picture: Héctor Landaeta/


Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Everyone at the South London Press thanks you for your continued support.

Former Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing:


If you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can make a donation which will allow us to continue to bring stories to you, both in print and online. Or please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.