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What if My Car Fails Its MOT?

In the United Kingdom, the MOT (Ministry of Transport) test is a mandatory annual examination for vehicles to ensure they meet the required safety and environmental standards. If your car fails its MOT, it can be quite concerning, but there are steps you can take to rectify the situation.

When your car fails its MOT, the first thing to do is to carefully read the failure certificate provided by the test center. This certificate outlines the reasons for failure and specifies the areas that need attention. It is essential to understand the failures to address them effectively.

Based on the failure points, you can then decide whether to repair the car yourself or take it to a garage. However, it is generally recommended to seek professional help from a trusted mechanic or garage, as they have the expertise to fix the issues effectively.

Once the repairs have been carried out, you need to take your car for a retest at the same test center within ten working days. If you exceed this timeframe, a full MOT test will be required, and you may not be able to legally drive your car until it passes.

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Here are some frequently asked questions about what to do if your car fails its MOT:

1. Can I drive my car after it fails its MOT?
No, it is illegal to drive a car that has failed its MOT unless you are driving it to a garage for repairs or to a pre-arranged MOT retest.

2. How long do I have to fix the issues and get a retest?
You have ten working days to fix the issues and get a retest, starting from the date of the original MOT test.

3. Can I take my car to a different test center for the retest?
Yes, you can take your car to any test center for a retest, but make sure to inform them that it is a retest.

4. Do I have to pay for the retest?
If you take your car for a retest at the same test center within ten working days, most places offer a free or reduced-price retest.

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5. What happens if my car fails the retest?
If your car fails the retest, you will need to repeat the process of getting it repaired and retested within ten working days.

6. Can I appeal if I disagree with the MOT failure?
Yes, you can appeal against the MOT failure if you believe it is unjustified. Contact the test center for further guidance on the appeal process.

7. What if I ignore the MOT failure and continue to drive my car?
Driving a car without a valid MOT certificate is illegal, and you may face penalties, such as a fine or points on your driving license. Additionally, your insurance may be invalidated.