MOT’s are an annual legal obligation for any car over three years old. Nonetheless, even though they are a regular part of our car maintenance schedules, many of us fret about them coming around. We not only worry about passing them, we also rarely take steps before them which will actually help us pass. Hence, Who Can Fix My Car have created this pre-mot checklist to aid our drivers.

There are a few very simple checks you can carry out prior to your MOT which massively help your chances of passing. Thus, cutting any costs and awarding you with confidence during your garage visit. Most people actually fail MOT’s for smaller issues which could be easily eradicated prior to the test.

Somethings are of course unpredictable and there are a number of issues that can only be fixed by a trained mechanic. However, its best to complete a few checks to stop you sweating the small stuff.


pre-mot checklist garage

Pre-MOT Checklist.

1. Give the car a deep clean inside and out

Examiners may refuse to carry out an MOT on a messy vehicle. 


2. Check your tyre tread with a 20p coin.

Place the coin into the tyre tread grooves, if you can’t see the coins outer band, then you are above the legal tread limit of 1.6mm and your tyres are safe. If it is visible, then your tyres can be deemed unsafe.


3. Gather tyre pressure readings and amend accordingly

Use a handheld pressure gauge to gather pressure readings and mark them against the value noted in your owner’s handbook. Top up or reduce pressure if necessary.


4. Check all lights on your vehicle are working

You will need another person to help with this, as you will need to be seated in driver’s seat to check them. You will also need to test your indicators. 


5. Make sure your number plate is clean and legible.

Make sure also that the characters are legible in correct font/spacing; complying with all legal requirements.


6. Inspect your windscreen wipers thoroughly

Are there any tears in the rubber? If they do they need, it is best to get them replaced prior to the MOT.  


7. Make sure screen wash levels are topped up.

This only takes a minute and truly makes a difference on your MOT’s outcome. 


8. Check all fuel caps are secure and that oil is topped up to the correct level.

This small check is imperative to carry out pre-MOT, an oil change is an annual maintenance job regardless.


9. All mirrors need to be in place and secure

Make sure the glass is free of cracks and are secured on properly, not just with a bit of tape. 


10. Ensure your horn is functioning

It must be loud enough for another motorist to hear to pass the test.


11. Check seat belts are functioning correctly

This is an important safety check, the drivers seat must also be able to easily adjust forwards and backwards.


12. Your windscreen mustn’t have any chips larger than 4 cm

For safety, and also for this test, your windscreen must be clear of large chips and cracks.


13. Ensure that your brakes are in good condition

When you brake, make sure the vehicle doesn’t pull to the side, and carry out a visual inspection of the brakes themselves. Look out for any excessive wearing that may look in need of replacement.



These few small checks will give you greater confidence in passing your annual MOT.

If you suspect that there are any bigger issues at hand, get them tackled well in advance to your MOT to spread costs. You can also opt to pay via Payment Assist for car repairs at many of our garage, which allows you to split the cost across four monthly interest-free instalments.

This is super handy for expensive repairs such as clutch replacements, so the price doesn’t hit you hard right before an MOT.

Stick to this pre-MOT checklist and increase your chances of a pass with little effort involved!