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Prepare your car for UK adventures: MOT insights

Written by Fiona

March 18 2024

If you are looking for a great adventure, you could choose to head off for a road trip around the UK. However, ensuring your vehicle is roadworthy is paramount for a safe and enjoyable journey. This is where the Ministry of Transport (MOT) test plays a pivotal role. The MOT test is a legal requirement for vehicles over three years old in the UK, assessing their safety, exhaust emissions, and roadworthiness. Prioritising the MOT test before embarking on your road trip not only ensures compliance with legal obligations but also safeguards the well-being of you, your passengers, and fellow road users throughout your travels.

Tyres and wheels

It is important to have wheels and tyres that are up to the job of being driven on for several thousand miles ahead of a road trip. Perhaps your tyres are close to wearing down beyond the legal tread depth, for example.

If so, you won’t want to have to change them away from home whether you’re in the south-east of England having driven from the West Country or on the Scottish Borders having travelled up the M6 from Manchester or further south.

It is better to have your tyres assessed during an MOT so that you know they’ll be good for the entire journey. If you do have to have a tyre or two replaced, then remember that having the tracking adjusted will also help your wheels to stay in alignment which is not only safer but helps to preserve the tread of tyres, as well.

Brakes and steering

In places as far afield as Basildon and Benbecula or Brentwood or Brechin, you need to ensure your car can steer and stop properly. In flat landscapes such as Essex, you may never notice that your handbrake isn’t performing properly when you park but you will in hillier locations such as Fort William.

Both your handbrake and foot brake, including the brake fluid, are checked during an MOT. Your steering will undergo similar checks, including the functioning of the car’s power steering system if it has one. You can also¬†book an MOT in Basildon for your vehicle from Elite Direct¬†before your road trip. You also need to keep in mind that you can have it completed a month ahead of its due date without losing any time on your current one.

Emissions testing

Emissions testing has been part of the MOT procedure in the UK for many years. This is important from the perspective of planning a road trip to anywhere in the country where the air is cleaner. If you want to drive from a big city like Glasgow to somewhere scenic, such as the Lake District or East Anglia, for instance, then you won’t want to spoil the experience for yourself or others with a car that is belching out excessive fumes. Again, an MOT will tell you whether this is the case or not.

Visibility and safety

Safety checks on seatbelts and the car’s hazard warning system are a part of any MOT nowadays. In addition, the inspector will check the visibility levels in the vehicle. This will mean making sure your mirrors are in good working order so you can see behind you adequately.

Furthermore, your car’s wiper blades will be looked at to make sure they will be able to function properly in all weathers, a crucial thing when you’ll be driving on roads you don’t know that well, of course.

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