MOT inspection manual: cars and passenger vehicles

Inspection processes and rules for car, private bus and light commercial vehicle (class 3, 4, 5 and 7 vehicle) MOT tests.

Applies to: England, Scotland, and Wales (see publication for Northern Ireland).

There are different MOT inspection manuals for motorcycles, heavy goods vehicles and public service vehicles.

  1. Introduction Definitions, vehicle classes, reasons to refuse to test a vehicle, narrow track vehicles, historic vehicles and inspection procedures for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  2. 0. Identification of the vehicle Registration plate (number plate) and vehicle identification number rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  3. 1. Brakes Brake condition and operation, service brakes, secondary brakes, parking brakes, anti-lock braking system (ABS), electronic braking system (EBS) and brake fluid rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  4. 2. Steering Mechanical condition, steering wheel and column or handlebar, forks and yokes, steering play and electronic power steering (EPS) rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  5. 3. Visibility Field of vision, bonnet catches, condition of the glass, the view to the rear, windscreen wipers and windscreen washer rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  6. 4. Lamps, reflectors and electrical equipment Headlamp, position lamps, daytime running lamps, stop lamps, indicators, hazard warning lamps, fog lamps, reversing lamps, lighting ‘tell-tales’, trailer electrical socket, electrical wiring and battery rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  7. 5. Axles, wheels, tyres and suspension Axle, wheel bearing, wheel and tyres, tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS), and suspension (including springs, shock absorbers, and suspension arms and joints) rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  8. 6. Body, structure and attachments Structure and attachments (including exhaust system and bumpers), and body and interior (including doors and catches, seats and floor) rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  9. 7. Other equipment Seat belts and restraint systems, airbags, anti-theft devices, horn, speedometer, speed limiter and electronic stability control (ESC) rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  10. 8. Nuisance Noise, exhaust emissions, engine malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) (sometimes called an engine management light or 'EML'), and fluid leak rules and inspection for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  11. 9. Supplementary tests for buses and coaches Entrance and exit doors, emergency exits, passenger grab handles, steps and stair rules and inspection for bus and coach MOT tests.
  12. 10. Seat belt installation checks Seat belt installation rules and inspection for vehicles fitted with more than 8 passenger seats and first used before 1 October 2001.
  13. Appendix A: Structural integrity and corrosion Assessing corrosion and methods of repair for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  14. Appendix B: Tyre load index tables Tyre load rating and exceptions, and tyre load index tables for single wheel and dual wheel configurations for car and passenger vehicle MOT tests.
  15. Appendix C: Seat belt fitment tables Seat belt fitment rules for passenger vehicles, motor caravans, ambulances, minibuses, coaches, buses other than with standing passengers, goods vehicles, and 3-wheeled vehicles, tricycles and quadricycles MOT tests.