How do I check if my car has an MOT or tax?
Are you unsure if your car is taxed or has a valid MOT? If so, we recommend using the government’s free tax and MOT checker online. This can help you to make sure that your vehicle is legally allowed to be driven on UK roads. Whether you want to check your current car or you’re looking at buying a second-hand vehicle, this system can be incredibly useful. All you need to check a car’s MOT or tax status is your registration number.
The Government tax and insurance checker
The Government’s tax and insurance checker is free to use and tells you whether a vehicle can legally be driven on the roads of the UK. You only need the registration number of a car to get the information that you require. It’s never been so easy to find out more about a vehicle’s MOT history. This tool is essential for those that wish to buy a second-hand car safely and will tell you when tax and the next MOT are due.
Take the following steps to see a car’s tax and MOT history.
- Head to the Government’s car tax checking website
- Click on ‘start now’
- Enter the registration number of the vehicle and click ‘continue’
- You will then see some preliminary information on your screen. Make sure you’re looking at the right vehicle details. Once you confirm that the right information has appeared, you can then click ‘continue’.
- You will then see details including the car’s tax and MOT status as well as other important details.
- If you have the 11-digit reference number from the vehicle’s V5C document, you will be able to find out the tax rate of the car.
More benefits of the MOT checker tool
If there is something dubious about the car that means it may be best to purchase another vehicle, the MOT checker tool may give you the vital information you need. Some of the information may not match up. For instance, it may give you information about the mileage that contradicts other details you have been given. The MOT history checker not only tells you if a car has failed a test but when and why it failed. It also gives you information on the mileage at the time of testing and any advisories given. Cars that are over three years old can only be driven if they are on their way for an MOT. If this rule is broken, you could be fined up to £1,000.
Using an insurance checker
If you want to find out whether a vehicle is insured, you can use the AskMID car insurance checker website. You will need to confirm that you are legally permitted to proceed as some information is only available to people such as brokers. If you are allowed to go ahead, type the registration number into the box at the top of your screen, tick the confirmation box and confirm that you are a human. You will then get a simple yes/no answer on whether the vehicle has insurance.
Has MOT testing changed recently?
The MOT testing process has changed over recent years. Defects found in newer vehicles are now categorised in a different way. ‘Dangerous’ and ‘major’ are both automatic fails. A car can still pass its MOT with a ‘minor’ fault, but this should be monitored closely.
The Government’s ‘check if a vehicle is taxed and has an MOT’ service went live in 2018. According to the Government, the service was the result of much research into the needs of motorists. Several designs and layouts were used before the end result was reached. According to the Government’s statistics, 92% of users are satisfied with the service, and around 88% of searches are completed. Search times were shortened by removing the need for vehicle manufacturer names to be entered.
Why are MOTs so important?
MOTs are important for a myriad of reasons. Your car must be taken in for an MOT test once it has been on the road for three years. MOTs ensure it’s safe for you to drive your vehicle on the roads of the UK. The test was named after the old Ministry of Transport. Despite what many people assume, servicing is not the same as MOT testing. This means you cannot book your car in for a service instead of an MOT. During an MOT, mechanical parts of your car will be examined as well as its emissions. This does not normally occur during servicing. When servicing takes place, your clutch, gearbox and engine will be looked at.
What is checked during an MOT? How many cars fail their tests?
Your MOT test will tell you about the condition of various parts of your car like your tyres, bodywork, seats, brakes, and fuel. Around 4 out of 10 cars are found to be unfit for driving on UK roads during MOT testing each year. This means that at least around 11 million cars can’t legally be driven on the roads at any time.
MOT failure rates are higher than they were in the late 2000s, despite the Government holding a consultation on whether motorists should be able to wait four years before MOT testing takes place. This implies that not all newer cars are as reliable and safe as we might expect. In fact, waiting four years could cost motorists more as it would give minor faults more time to turn into serious, expensive defects.
What if I haven’t spotted any issues with my car?
Just because a car seems fine doesn’t mean that it doesn’t need an MOT. There’s always a chance that your vehicle may have an insufficient tyre tread depth, malfunctioning electrics, poorly-performing brakes, lights, seatbelts, suspension or other problems that you are yet to spot.
At Wyatt Auto Services, we have carried out MOT testing for hundreds of motorists across Barnsley and the surrounding areas. Why not get in touch today if it’s time to arrange an MOT in Barnsley? We can deliver a fantastic service at a highly competitive price.