Changes to MOT rules regarding headlamp conversions

Section 4.1.4 of the current MOT inspection manuals for both motorcycles and cars and passenger vehicles states ‘Existing halogen headlamp units should not be converted to be used with high intensity discharge (HID) or light emitting diode (LED) bulbs. If such a conversion has been done, you must fail the headlamp.’

Class 3, 4, 5 and 7 vehicles
For class 3, 4, 5 and 7 vehicles, the defect ‘Light source and lamp not compatible’ only applies to vehicles first used on or after 1 April 1986.

Should a vehicle be presented for an MOT test with conversions before 1 April 1986 they must not be failed with immediate effect.

Vehicles presented with converted halogen headlamp units first used on or after 1 April 1986 will continue to be failed.

Headlamps must comply with all other requirements of the test and headlamp aim.

Source: MOT special notice 01-21: headlamp conversions – GOV.UK

DVSA issues clarification on MOT exemptions — Garagewire

Vehicles exempt from MOTs which are presented for testing and fail to achieve a pass must no longer be driven on public roads, a DVSA notification has confirmed.

From today (27 May 2020) test certificates will remind drivers that if a vehicle fails its MOT, the six-month MOT exemption is no longer valid.

The test expiry date, which will be updated the following day, will revert to the fail date.

Read more:
DVSA issues clarification on MOT exemptions — Garagewire

Coronavirus MOT Updates

Car, van and motorcycle MOT expiry dates will be extended by 6 months if it’s due on or after 30 March 2020 – but you must keep your vehicle safe to drive.

  1. Eligibility
  2. First MOT Due
  3. How the 6-month Extension Works
  4. If you take your vehicle for its MOT and it fails

The government announced back in March that MOTs due to expire after the 30th March 2020 will be extended by six months. Since then there has been little demand from the public for MOT tests and as a result most MOT Stations and repair workshops have temporarily closed.

I have been in constant contact with the MOT Station I use for my customer’s MOT tests and I’m now pleased to announce that they have reopened but with reduce staffing and reduced operating hours. This means I can now take bookings for MOT tests when they fall due.

New guidance issued by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency on May 27th 2020 clarifies the rules regarding vehicles which fail the MOT test. This will have implications for my customers as their vehicle will be unusable until a repair and retest have been carried out.

I will keep this page updated with any changes or new information as an when it released.

A brief outline of these changes is detailed below. You can read the full guidance here.

1. Eligibility

Your MOT certificate will be extended by 6 months if it was due to expire on or after 30 March 2020 and your vehicle is a:

2. First MOT due

The extension also applies to these types of vehicles that are due their first MOT test on or after 30 March 2020.

3. How the 6-month extension works

Your vehicle’s MOT expiry date will be automatically extended by 6 months if it’s eligible. This will be done about 7 days before it’s due to expire.

This means that:

  • your vehicle will still have a valid MOT certificate for an extra 6 months
  • you can still tax your vehicle – you might need to wait to do this until later in the month if both your MOT and vehicle tax run out this month
  • your insurance will still be valid
  • your vehicle’s record will be updated so the police can see you have a valid MOT

You will not get a new paper MOT certificate with the new expiry date on it.

You must still keep your vehicle safe to drive.


Your vehicle’s MOT was due to expire on 3 May 2020.

This will automatically be extended to 3 November 2020. You will need to get your MOT by this date.

4. If you take your vehicle for its MOT and it fails

Your MOT extension will no longer apply if you take your vehicle for its MOT and it fails.

Your vehicle will need to be fixed and pass its MOT before you can use it again.


Your vehicle’s MOT was originally due to expire on 3 May 2020, but has been extended to 3 November 2020.

You take your vehicle for its MOT in August and it fails. You must stop using the vehicle until it’s fixed and passes another MOT test.

Our Safe Workshop Practice Charter

  • We try to minimise contact with customers and suppliers.
    • The workshop is closed to visitors and all work is carried out by appointment only.
    • Initial customer contact is by telephone, email or social media messaging only.
    • Drop-off and pick-up times will be staggered to ensure there is only one customer present at the workshop at any time.
    • We are not providing a while-you-wait service and there will be no waiting at or in the vicinity of the workshop.
  • We keep customers safe by using new disposable seat covers, floor mats and gloves for every job.
  • We will turn off vehicle Air Con/Climate Control to avoid spreading germs.
  • We wipe down all vehicle contact points as we work with Smartsan-V (passes BS EN1276:1997 & BS EN 1650:1998 disinfection standards), a non-staining broad spectrum sanitiser that is effective against a wide range of pathogenic virus, bacteria, yeast and fungi. A sanitation checklist will be left in all vehicles after the final treatment.
  • Items in the workshop which come into contact with customers such as the card machine will be sanitised after each use with Smartsan-V.
  • Our workshop follows all current government social distancing guidelines.
    • New signage and barriers have been installed at the workshop complying with the government’s latest ‘COVID-19 Secure‘ guidelines.
    • A clear plastic cough/sneeze guard is now installed at the reception counter.
    • Alcohol-based hand sanitiser gel (≥70% alcohol content, passes BS EN 1276 & BS EN 1500 disinfection standards) is available on the reception counter. I would ask all visitors to use it on arrival at reception and before they leave.
  • We respect high risk customers by maintaining an external drop-off and collection point.
    • When necessary and for high-risk customers we will increase our level of personal protective equipment (PPE) to include a 3M FFP3 respirator and disposable nitrile examination gloves.
  • We will offer you value-added services; e.g. Air Con disinfection, cabin filter replacement (HEPA) etc. for your added protection.
  • To keep your vehicle legally roadworthy we will carry out a free visual safety check of the following:
    • Brake Discs
    • Brake Pads
    • Horn
    • Lights
    • Wipers & Washers
    • Tyres
    • MOT Due Date
  • We will notify you of any defects found during this check.
  • We will ensure all contact points and keys are wiped down before collection.

TPMS Diagnostic Health Check

Tyre pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) have been fitted to cars for many years but recently TPMS has become mandatory for all new vehicles and has become a testable item for the annual MOT inspection.

Two main technologies exist; indirect and direct TPMS. Indirect systems detect wheel speed rotation differences resulting from a deflated tyre by using inputs from the ABS wheel speed sensors. This technology was unreliable and could not detect tyre deflation in more than one wheel. All modern vehicles are fitted with direct TPMS which includes a pressure sensor in each wheel which transmits readings to a control unit using radio signals. The driver’s information display can then, in most cases display the tyre pressures for each wheel and warn the driver if a tyre suffers an unexpected pressure loss.

Like with all complex electronic systems, faults can occur with TPMS components resulting in the TPMS warning lamp illuminating. We have designed our TPMS Diagnostic Health Check to help identify the most common causes of unexplained TPMS warnings both quickly and cost effectively.

Our TPMS Diagnostic Health Check uses the latest dedicated TPMS diagnostic equipment and covers the following tests:

  • Checking and adjusting the tyre pressures in accordance with the tyre pressure placard.
  • Carrying out a scan of all TPMS sensors to check they are responding and reporting the correct tyre pressure.
  • Checking the sensor battery level*.
  • Carrying out a TPMS module fault code scan.
  • Carrying out a TPMS sensor ID comparison with the TPMS module*.
  • Carry out a TPMS sensor relearn procedure if required*.

* When vehicle is equipped with this function.

Our TPMS Diagnostic Health Check is suitable for vehicles equipped with direct TPMS. We can also carry out diagnostic work on indirect TPMS systems, please contact us for details. Further chargeable diagnostic and/or mechanical work may be required to resolve some TPMS faults.

Buying a Car? Get it Inspected!

One of my brother-in-laws passed his driving test last Thursday and promptly went out and put a deposit down on a ten year old Ford Fiesta from a local used car dealer.

He picked the car up at 6.00pm last night and no doubt being extremely excited went to collect his wife from work where the car then broke down. He’d had the car less than one hour.

I was called out and found the battery not just discharged but dangerous. The state-of-charge indicator in the top of the battery was showing red. I was told the car dealer had serviced the car prior to collection. As you can see from the photo above the oil filter hadn’t been replaced so it hadn’t been serviced at all. The bonnet wouldn’t lock down properly leaving it at risk of flying open when driving. The car also had a full MOT but the passenger side windscreen wiper blade was split. If they’ve missed a wiper blade what else have they missed?

This all could have been avoided if the car had been inspected prior to purchase and any repairs subsequently carried out by the car dealer checked before handing over any money. It doesn’t matter whether you’re spending £500, £5000 or £50,000 on a used car, it’s cheaper to get it inspected than to find yourself stranded miles away from home.

Which? The second-hand car I bought has a problem, what are my rights?

Aero Flat Wiper Blades

We now have in stock a comprehensive range of flat/aero style wiper blades compatible with most modern vehicles originally equipped with this type of blade.

These wiper blades are OEM fit, provide excellent screen coverage, are graphite coated for extended life and are smooth and silent in operation.

We provide free fitting while you wait with every blade purchased.

MOT Test Changes May 2018

The government has announced changes to the way MOT Tests are carried out which will come into affect on the 20th May 2018. These changes are required to implement the EU Roadworthiness Directive.

The first major change is to the way information is shown on the pass and failure certificates. Defects will now be categorised as dangerous, major or minor. Vehicles with dangerous or major faults will automatically fail the test and those flagged as dangerous will see the vehicle’s presenter advised not to drive their vehicle away from the garage until these defects are repaired. Minor defects will be handled in much the same was as advisories are today, providing information to the owner of what repairs may be required in the near future.

For diesel-engined vehicles in the Euro5 and Euro6 emissions categories the exhaust emissions smoke limit will be halved and additionally any vehicle fitted with a diesel particulate filter (DPF) which emits any colour of visible smoke from the tailpipe during emissions testing will also fail. The visual inspection for the DPF will be improved and now vehicles will fail the test if there’s evidence it has not just been removed as is currently the case but also whether it has been tampered with, with the onus being on the owner to prove any tampering has been done for legitimate reasons.

Some tweaks have been made to other areas of the test. Brake components such as brake discs will fail if there’s evidence they are worn. Checking the operations of reverse lamps has been added to the lighting section. The engine management light (check engine light) must illuminate when the ignition is switched on and must go out when the engine starts.

Cars 40 years old and older will be exempt from MOT testing from May so any car manufactured before 1978 this year, 1979 next year and so on. These vehicles must still be roadworthy but as most are owned by enthusiasts the government believe they will be well maintained and not used often.