The annual car MOT can often be something we put to the back of our minds and forget about. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that more than seven million cars in the UK every year fall victim to a first time fail. More often than not these fails come at the hands of a minor fault that would have been resolved having consumed little of your time and money had it been done prior to the test. Here, with automotive inventory supplier Ring Automotive, we are here to help, preventing you from having to return for that dreaded re-test! Below we’ll run you through three of the most common fails, and how to avoid them:
Seven and a half percent of fails all relate to tyres being in a poor condition. In order to ensure safe driving, it is essential to have tyres that are maintained properly as neglecting them may result in your vehicle failing its MOT. The legal requirement for tyre tread on passenger vehicles up to eight seats is 1.6mm, but studies show that when the tread drops below 3mm, stopping distance begins to be significantly affected.
A depth gauge is the easiest way to check your tyres tread, making sure it is within the legally accepted limit. However, to ensure your tyres are both safe and helping cut down fuel consumption, drivers need to check the pressure as well. For a digital gauge that gives accurate readings on a large backlit screen, records the correct pressure and has an integrated LED light, Ring suggests the RTG7 Programmable Digital Tyre Pressure & Tread Depth Gauge. This is easy to store in the car and easy to use, wherever you are. Available nationwide, SSP £24.99.
Currently, there exist no laws regarding tyre pressure, however, tyres that are under or over-inflated will cause the traction between the tyre and the road to reduce, making driving less safe whilst also decreasing fuel efficiency. For easy pressure top ups, try the Ring RAC635 Digital Car Tyre Inflator, with pre-set for accurate inflation. This industry-recognised inflator can inflate a 13” tyre from flat to 35PSI in under 3 minutes – making tops up quick and simple.
Off the seven million cars that fail to get the green light each year, four and a half million have failed because of issues with their electrics, lights, and reflectors. Doing a quick bulb check before you take the vehicle to the garage could avoid an MOT fail. Make sure you check all the exterior bulbs – this includes the side light, indicator, tail light and number plate lights. The registration plate lamp being out accounts for 4.5% of MOT fails.
When it comes to headlamps, there exist a variety of options as to how you can guarantee MOT success, including installing upgrades, which omit more light, ultimately enhancing your driving ability. We recommend you always replace bulbs in pairs, to ensure the light output is equal from both headlights. Ring stocks a range of bulbs, including long life versions, and for headlamps, try the new Xenon150 bulbs (nationwide – SSP £39.99), which put up to 150% more light on road without compromising on life.
A strong level of visibility is crucial when behind the wheel of a car making it understandable why more than six per cent of vehicles fail MOT thanks to windscreen cracks or window wipers which have worn out. As wipers deteriorate gradually, drivers often don’t realise they are no longer clearing the windscreen effectively. Choosing and fitting the right blade can seem tricky, but Ring’s new range of Ultravision Wiper Blades (SSP £9.99 to £13.99) make blade selection easy. The unique, patent-
pending clip fits 95% of the car parc, meaning that drivers just need to know the blade length for their vehicle to select the correct blade. The clip adapts to fit the seven most common wiper arms.
Henry Bisson, Marketing Manager for Ring Automotive, notes, “Motorists could be making savings by carrying out basic checks and maintenance at home, but often they don’t realise that these minor faults could cause an MOT fail. What’s more, having well-maintained tyres, blades and lighting are driving safety essentials, so making sure they are regularly checked and replaced when necessary is critical.”