Winter is fast approaching and with it the joy of the festive season. Shorter, colder and darker days, holiday shopping, celebrations and meals with the family - in short, there is a whole lot to look forward to!
For some though, the onset of the winter holidays brings with it the realisation that their MOT is due for renewal, and so begins the sometimes not so joyous task of organising an MOT. Of course, here at getmymot.com we try our best to make it easy for you to find a garage close to your home or work which is both priced reasonably and has availability (Even at 10pm when you realise you forgot to book your MOT again... ), but what about making the actual MOT less hassle - what do you need to know before getting your MOT this year?
Earlier this year, the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) introduced more stringent "dashboard monitoring" checks - essentially meaning that if any of your dashboard warning lights are illuminated at the time of the test, the vehicle will fail its MOT.
Specifically, warning lights for Stability Control (ESC) , Airbags (SRS), Anti-lock braking (ABS), Tyre Pressure Monitoring (TPMS) will be under the watchful eye of testers, as well as the famous Check Engine Light, and all of the above will need to not be permanently illuminated during the MOT.
The easiest way to ensure that your vehicle wont fail under this new testing measure is to ensure that there are no rogue warning lights continuously illuminated on your dashboard. But what happens if you have one of these warning lights? Is it a big issue? How much will it cost to repair? Is your my still safe?
Generally speaking, the first place you should be looking is in your vehicle handbook to find an explanation for the warning light you are seeing. (If you can't find what youre looking for, take a photo and post it on our facebook / instagram page!) Whether your car is still safe and how much it is going to cost can is a question best answered by your local garage.
Your local garage will be able to plug your car into a special diagnostic tool to "read" the error information logged in the vehicle's computer to understand the root cause of the problem and then will use this information to advise you of a relative cost and also the immediate safety of your vehicle. Simple versions of these diagnostic tools, often referred to as "Scan Tools" can be found relatively cheaply on Amazon and Ebay, however it is our opinion that visiting your garage is the best and safest option - you can expect to pay between £40 and £60 for a diagnostic session at most garages - with some garages not charging a diagnostic fee at all if you have them repair your vehicle.