MOT failures are costing British drivers hundreds of pounds to fix – and get their cars back on the road.
Motorists in the UK say they pay an average of £272 to correct faults that have been discovered on their cars during an MOT.
With the price of an MOT capped at £54.85, this means motorists whose cars fail the first time round are hit in the pocket for an extra £326.85
A survey for the Good Garage Scheme – www.goodgaragescheme.com– shows British drivers are clueless when it comes to making sure their cars are roadworthy.
Government figures show 30% of all MOT fails relate to lightbulbs, 10% relate to tyres and 8.5% relate to the driver’s view of the road, including issues with mirrors, wipers and washers. 
However, over a quarter (27%) of drivers have no idea how to test their tyre pressures, and three in ten (29%) British drivers don’t even know how to pump up their tyres, while 50% cannot change a wheel according to the research.
With recent news around the increase in emission failures, this spells more bad news for UK motorists.
Philip Dugmore, technical manager at the Good Garage Scheme, said: “If drivers kept a closer eye on their cars they can avoid a hefty pay out to pass a second MOT.
Simple things like learning how to check the oil and top it up – checking your tyre pressure regularly and making sure all your lights are working can keep your car ticking over and far more likely to pass its MOT first time round.”
Forty-three per cent of drivers said they had owned a car that failed its MOT and more than two in five (46%) have struggled to scrape the cash together to get their motor back on the road.
Drivers in Liverpool said they were hardest hit, having to fork out an average £441.38 on fixing a second MOT while those in Belfast got away with just paying £78.17.
A quarter of British drivers (26%) say they do not know how to check the oil in their car – or how to top it up.
Two in five (39%) risk serious engine problems by not knowing how to fill up the anti-freeze or coolant in their car.
The research showed a level of confusion among British drivers around the MOT, with two in five (43%) falsely believing dirty headlamps will fail an MOT.
And three-quarters (73%) do not think about having the reserve fuel light illuminated when you take the car to an MOT.
However, a very low fuel level can lead to a test failure as the garage will need fuel in the tank to check emissions as part of the MOT.
When it comes to buying accessories for their cars, Brits spend an average of £164 – just shy of the £194 Brits spend on servicing their cars.
Only 16% of Brits are planning to get their cars serviced before winter sets in properly – potentially setting up a host of problems for the coldest months of the year.
Mr Dugmore said: “Simple things like checking your battery, topping up antifreeze, checking your tyres and cleaning your lamps, windscreen and washers can all help stop problems building up for your car over winter.
So instead of just hoping our motors can get us through the colder months, Brits can save themselves a lot of time and money just by carrying out some simple maintenance checks. Should they find anything too tricky to undertake themselves, then a trip to their local garage should be relatively easy – some of whom will also offer free checks”.
|Amount spent fixing MOT faults
An online survey was conducted by Atomik Research among 2,000 motorists. The research fieldwork took place between 21st– 26thNovember 2018. Atomik Research is an independent creative market research agency that employs MRS-certified researchers and abides to MRS code.