The new MOT test has come into force this week and there is already some confusion surrounding the wide-ranging changes and fresh initiatives.
To begin with one of the biggest changes is the introduction of three new categories which deem the seriousness of a fault. These are: MINOR, MAJOR and DANGEROUS. The latter two result in an immediate fail.
Tyres have not escaped the list of new procedures, which have been introduced. Here we explain exactly how the new changes affect tyres and what vehicle owners need to be aware of before booking in for the test.
New MOT tyre legislation
According to the Driver and Vehicles Standards Agency (DVSA), the test will now include checking if: “the tyres are obviously underinflated”.
Underinflated tyres themselves will not lead to a fail, however they will be deemed a MINOR defect, which is one of the three new categories introduced in the new test. MINOR problems should be repaired as soon as possible.
But tyre testing doesn’t stop here. Since 2015, vehicles first used on or after 1 January 2012 have been checked to make sure the tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) MIL is working.
The DVSA told etyres that with regards to tyre inflation and TPMS: “it would be categorised as a MINOR defect if there was a minor malfunction or a tyre was obviously underinflated. This counts as a PASS.
“However, if the TPMS system was completely inoperative, it would be deemed a MAJOR defect. This leads to an automatic fail.”
Pre-MOT Tyre Checks
Before taking your vehicle for its MOT carry out basic tyre checks ahead of the test. This way if you identify a problem, you can shop around to find the best deal on a new tyre. You could also arrange a puncture repair. Both of these steps could save you money. Either you will secure a lower price to avoid paying over-inflated prices at the test centre/garage. Also an etyres puncture repair costs from £25, considerably less than the cost of a new tyre.
To begin with all four tyres must be compatible with the types of tyres fitted to the other wheels. You can expect an MOT failure if you have tyres of different sizes on the same axle.
In order to pass the test, tyres must have at least the minimum tread depth limit of 1.6mm. Check several areas across the central three quarters and around the entire circumference of each tyre. You can do this by identifying the tread wear indicators and checking the tread hasn’t worn down to the level of the raised indicator bar. Alternatively you can take the 20p test. Insert a 20p coin into the groove of the tyre. If the outer band is visible, it indicates the tyre is worn to or below the legal limit. We recommend you have it replaced as soon as possible.
Examine the tyre for signs of damage. If a tyre has a cut the length of which is in excess of 25mm or 10% of the section width (whichever is greater) or deep enough to reach the ply or cords, it will constitute a failed test. So will a tyre that has a lump, bulge or tear caused by separation or partial failure of its structure. This includes any lifting of the tread rubber or any of its ply or cord exposed.
Finally, it is worth pointing out that spare wheels and tyres are not inspected.
To order new tyres, book a puncture repair or expert and impartial advice about MOT tyre law, contact etyres now
Denna Bowman, Head Office