Can you beat these crazy reasons for MOT failures?

Filthy car interiors among the most shocking reasons why test stations refuse to undertake an MOT

Can you beat these crazy reasons for MOT failures?
Test stations reported fears regarding environmental health. Image: Bigstock.

It has been reported by Scrap Car Comparison that 70,000 drivers in 2016 failed their MOT, some for crazy – but avoidable – reasons.

Among the common place reasons for failure such as worn our brake pads and poorly aimed headlamps, 2,416 motorists received a ‘refusal to MOT’ as their vehicle had been deemed inaccessible, some for environmental health issues.

MOT stations throughout the country have reported instances of fast food leftovers and even vehicles where the owners have been putting their health at risk due to mould growing within the cabin.

It isn’t just the cabins that are causing stations to refuse to perform a MOT, however, 1,624 motorists were turned away as their cars (mainly 4x4s) were covered in mud.

Shocking amount failed visibility

Other reasons for failure included 126 people who had registered for an MOT despite missing their registration plate. said: “It’s amazing how many drivers fail before they even set foot in the testing centres.

“Dirty number plates, warning lights these can easily be given attention and many of the problems are basic maintenance.

“Poor car hygiene is a common factor and can also lead to health issues.”

A further 1,422 fails were down to dirty number plates, plates of the wrong colour or plates with illegal fonts.

An alarming amount of motorists were failing due to issues with their visibility, with one car reportedly having fourteen stickers covering part of the front windscreen.

More crazy reasons for failing or ‘refusal to MOT’ included car boots inaccessible by being full of sporting equipment and the failure of a driver and an MOT tester to remove a satnav sucker from a window obscuring a drivers view.

How often do you come across a filthy cabin? What some of the more unsual reasons for failures that you’ve issued? Share your experiences in the comments below or send your pictures to [email protected].


  1. 27 years testing, I’m still amazed at what I see though!
    Recently found birds nests under vans twice, one still live.
    And I’ve lost count how many times people say “you cant fail it on that” or my personal favourite, “please don’t fail it, I’m selling it” like that makes it ok to just pass anything!
    People still do not understand what an mot is.

    • Hi Peter, that sounds insane! What’s the most common, avoidable reason, you’d say you fail MOTs for?

      • Easily got to be ineffective wiper blades.
        If I can’t see through the screen after using the washers and wipers what chance has the driver in heavy rain on a motorway?

        • It’s worrying that people would put themselves at risk for something that’s so easily fixed.

  2. Lack of proper, regular maintenance is the main reason for Failures

  3. The garage /MOT bay next to our place is so strict they regularly fail their own mechanics vehicles…haha

    • Where’s that – sounds like they take the job seriously – will take my car there


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