Ways to cut the cost of your MOT before it's due

Insurance Revolution Blog , Car Servicing , MOT


Car owners often dread the MOT test given the rising cost of MOT bills. Now, the MOT tests itself cost a standard fee but it’s the repair charges that hike up the overall bill. There have been cases where MOT costs had staggered to as much as £375. However, the MOT test is mandatory for any vehicle to ensure your compliance to road safety & environmental standards. But you can cut the cost of your MOT even before it happens. Yes you heard it right. The article below offers the best secrets to reduce your MOT bill.

But first let’s check a few major points about MOT.

When to get the MOT test?

You should send your vehicle for MOT test by-

  • 3rd anniversary of the vehicle’s registration
  • Anniversary of the vehicle’s last MOT when the car is already 3+ years

On the other hand, there are some vehicles which must be sent for MOT after its 1st year. You can check with MOT website to see whether your current vehicle falls under that category.

MOT fees

The maximum MOT fee for car is around £54.85. If it’s a motorcycle (standard option) the cost would be £29.65.

MOT fines

Don’t ever make the mistake of not sending your car for MOT if it qualifies for the test. You would be fined something like £1,000 if you are caught driving your car without valid MOT.


Tips to reduce MOT bills:

Follow regular maintenance

This is one of the most important points to cut the cost of your MOT. Most cars fail in MOT test and land up with expensive bills due to maintenance issues. Thus, expert always advise to get regular with car maintenance so that you can avoid a pricey repair on time. You must keep check on the car parts at regular intervals and make sure to find appropriate replacements before it’s too late. If you car receives timely maintenance it will assure better safety on road and hence will be more likely to pass the MOT test.

18.7 percent of cars fail test due to lighting & signaling problems, 12.5 percent for suspension issues and 10.2 percent for braking problems.

Get the light & signal tested beforehand

As mentioned in the above point, maximum cars fail the MOT for light & signal issues. So, it’s always advised to get a regular checkup on your car light & signal. It will help to locate any possible problems on time and get their fix done before you send the car for the test.

Make sure to have a regular check on rear & front lights as well as headlights, indicators, hazard lights, high beams and dipped lights. If the yellow coating from your indicator is coming out, you should get it replaced fast.

Be careful about tyre tread

A car should have minimum 1.6 mm tread on every tyre to pass the MOT test. If your car doesn’t comply with this minimum criteria it will be declared as “failed” even when the other parts are in perfect condition. Thus, you should check the tyre tread on a regular basis so that you can get replacements on time- before the car is sent for MOT.

There is a 20p trick here to check the tyre tread. Just push your 20p coin inside tyre tread. If you can see its outer edge, the tyre needs replacement.

Check tyre pressure

It’s a vital point to remember when you want to know how to cut the cost of your MOT. Tyres have to be changed over time. But you can enhance the longevity of the tyre if you can keep the tyre tread in good condition. According to experts, the right level of tyre pressure is crucial to the durability of the tyre tread. Under-inflated tyres slow the vehicle and also hike fuel consumption. On the other hand, over-inflated ones damages tyre tread faster calling for frequent replacements. Thus, make sure to get a monthly check-up on tyre pressure to avoid unnecessary wear & tear.

Practice smooth driving

We have seen earlier that braking issues area a major cause behind MOT failures. Thus, you should take proper care of your brakes to ensure they last longer. Aggressive driving ruins brake pads faster, calling for frequent repairs. Many car owners ignore that to save costs which turn to a hefty repair bill when the car is sent for MOT. But you can save all such hassles if you make sure to drive safe and smooth. Gentle driving practices don’t cause much strain on the brake pads and save you from frequent repair needs.

Be mindful about choice of test centre

The test centre you choose plays a decisive role in determining the range of your MOT bill. There are 4 options before you- a car dealer, a fast-fit outfit station, independent local garage and council MOT station. The dealer option is anyday costly. Fast-fit stations are comparatively cost-effective since many such stations extend handy offers on cheap MOTs . But it’s also true that they try to make money by belting out pricey repairs if the car fails in its MOT test. There have been reports that some unscrupulous stations fake a MOT failure only to make car owners pay for costly repairs.

Local independent garages show a similar side. However, if you can somehow manage a good rapport with a garage mechanic- you can save those incidences of fake failures and unnecessarily costly repairs. The most reasonable option would be council MOT station. These centres just test the vehicle and don’t perform repair works. And as they don’t do the repair fixes, they won’t benefit anywhere from staging fake failure to hike up the MOT bill. You can expect an honest and unbiased opinion here.

Experts also advise to get a pre-inspection for your car before you send it for MOT test. Look for a credible garage that can assure a neutral and honest opinion about the issues of your car. You can ask a friend here who recently had a successful MOT test to refer a trusted garage. Just make sure he drives the same car that you drive.

At Insurance Revolution, we've teamed up with Servicing Stop to help you get up to 60% discount on your MOT with one of many trusted garages around the UK! Go to www.irevolution.servicingstop.co.uk and see how much you can save on your next MOT!

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