The Government stepped up its efforts to reduce the environmental impact of the vehicles we drive every day – and it did this by making its MOT tests even more stringent and difficult to pass. As a driver, it is important to understand what changes were made so you don’t receive a shock when test time rolls around.
What were the changes to the MOT in 2018?
1. Diesel emissions
The most significant area for diesel car owners is stricter rules on the permissible level of emissions of cars fitted with a diesel particulate filter (DPF). If a car’s exhaust emits “visible smoke of any colour”, it will be issued with a Major fault and will fail the test. One way that might help with this is a TerraClean – enter your postcode at the top of the page to find your nearest dealer.
2. DPF removal
MOT testers are also required to check if the car’s DPF has been removed or tampered with. If it has, the tester must refuse to test the car unless the owner can provide a “legitimate” reason for it having been removed, such as for cleaning. For more information visit our DPF page.
3. Different categories of faults
Defects found during the MOT will be categorised as either:
The category the MOT tester gives each item will depend on the type of problem and how serious it is. MOT testers will still give advice about items you need to monitor. These are known as ‘advisories’.
4. Other new areas of testing:
- If tyres are obviously under inflated
- If the brake fluid has been contaminated
- For fluid leaks posing an environmental risk
- Brake pad warning lights and if brake pads or discs are missing
- Reversing lights on vehicles first used from 1 September 2009
- Headlight washers on vehicles first used from 1 September 2009 (if they have them)
- Daytime running lights on vehicles first used from 1 March 2018 (most of these vehicles will have their first MOT in 2021 when they’re 3 years old)
When did the new MOT come into force?
These changes came into force as of 20th May 2018.
I want more information – where can I get it?
Follow the link to see the full MOT inspection manual. It’s a long document, as you’d expect, but contains the precise wording that will affect your vehicle. If you want to see the sections that relate to DPFs, see section 188.8.131.52.
I am worried about my DPF/diesel emissions – what can I do?
You could start by talking to a TerraClean dealer. A healthy diesel car should not be emitting smoke of any colour – if you think you may have a problem, then your TerraClean dealer will be able to help. Find your nearest one by entering your postcode here.
You should never be tempted to have a DPF removed – find out why here.