What can I do if my car fails its MOT test?
By doing the right things at the right time, you can ensure that your car failing its MOT doesn’t turn into a disaster
First published: 15th March 2016
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If your car fails its MOT, the first instruction is very simple: Do Not Panic. In fact, 40% of vehicles fail, and there are more than 600 ways to fail. More than that, remember that you still have an MOT: even though it has failed, your car has a valid MOT certificate until the current one expires.
As for what to do next, these are our top tips:
If you don’t think your car should have failed:
Failures can be disputed by completing a VT17 form (which is available online - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/complain-about-an-mot) within 14 working days of the test. The test can be rescheduled within 5 days, but the test fee must be repaid (although this may be refunded with an upheld appeal).
Do Not ‘Pay Your Way’
If you are prepared to simply open your wallet, people are happy to take your money. Instead, before you start spending, do what MOT Angel can do on behalf of its customers: query the garage work, asking for proof of the issue, to ensure you receive good value.
Get An Alternative Quote
If you receive a large repair quote, take the car home before you get the work done. As long as you have booked the repair in advance, you will have time to shop around and compare quotes.
If you need to have the car re-tested after it has been repaired, you can save money by following the rules on re-testing:
These minor repairs can be retested at the same test centre free within 24 hours:
3. Sharp edges/projections
4. Boot lid
6. Steering wheel
7. Brake pedal anti-slip
8. Loading door
14. Rear reflectors
16. Drop sides
17. Registration plates
18. Windscreen and glass
19. Fuel filler cap
20. Seat belts
21. Windscreen wipers and washers
22. Hazard warning lights
Within 10 working days, you are entitled to:
A free partial re-test at the same test station, if the car was left there for repair
A retest at half the fee, if the car was removed from the premises
However, after 10 days, you have to pay the full MOT test fee when your car is retested.
Failures are often accompanied by a VT32 form containing comments, known as advisories. These relate to work that will be required soon, but is not immediately necessary.
To see the likelihood of your car failing take a look at the MOT Angel MOT Index.
Book an MOT without the hassle for less than £40. MOT Angel's engineers manage the garage on your behalf, ensuring value and necessity on any findings. All garages are vetted and monitored to ensure their quality of work.
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