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Book an MOT

It’s easy to book an MOT test online at one of our local approved garages. You can trust them to meet the highest standards set by the RAC – which means honest pricing, quality work and exceptional customer service are guaranteed. Plus, all our garages are friendly and will explain everything in a jargon-free way, so you can book with confidence today.

12 months warranty

All repairs at an RAC Approved Garage come with a 12-month warranty*

Save £15+ on your MOT 

That’s the average saving when you book your MOT with us

Price match guarantee

If you find a cheaper local MOT, we’ll match the price^

Book an MOT 

What is an MOT test?

A Ministry of Transport (MOT) test checks that your vehicle meets road safety and environmental standards. Cars over three years old (four years in Northern Ireland) need to pass an MOT test every year. It’s illegal to drive a car without an up-to-date MOT certificate.

An MOT test involves multiple checks on your car, including the brakes and fuel system, seatbelts, windscreen wipers and mirrors. Find out more in our MOT checklist.

When do I need an MOT?

A car needs an MOT every year once it’s three years old (four years in Northern Ireland). Then it needs to be retested every year on the anniversary of its last MOT. Cars under three years old don’t need an MOT.

Once you’ve passed, you’ll get an MOT test certificate showing the date of the test and the expiry date. You can get your car retested up to a month (minus a day) before it expires and keep the original renewal date.

Can I drive without an MOT?

No, it’s illegal to drive a car without a valid MOT certificate. You could be prosecuted for doing so.

The only time you can drive without an MOT is if you’ve booked an MOT and are driving your car to the test. If you own a car but aren’t planning on driving it, you need to register your vehicle as off the road (SORN). Find out more in our MOT guide.

MOT due soon? Book online with our network
of RAC Approved Garages.

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How early can you get an MOT?

An MOT lasts for a year. The date it runs out is shown on your most recent MOT pass certificate.

You can MOT your vehicle up to one month (minus a day) before the due date and still keep the same renewal date.

For example: If your MOT runs out on 16 September, the earliest you can MOT your car and keep the same renewal date next year is 17 August.

You can get an MOT earlier than this. But if you do, the renewal date will change to one year (minus a day) from the date your vehicle passed this MOT.

Is my insurance valid without an MOT?

Driving without a valid MOT makes your car insurance invalid, no matter when your cover is due to end. If you have an accident, this could leave you liable for big repair bills or worse. It’s best not the take the risk.

How much is an MOT?

The price of an MOT varies depending on the test centre and the type of vehicle you have. The maximum MOT fee for a car is £54.85 and £29.65 for a motorbike.

RAC Approved Garages promise to offer fair prices to customers. So you know you won’t be overcharged.

How long does an MOT take?

An MOT test usually takes between 45 and 60 minutes. Just keep in mind that the garage could ask you to drop off your car in the morning and come back when it’s ready. This means you may be without your car for the whole day.

If your car fails the test and needs repairs, it can take longer. The test centre won’t let you drive away until the issues are fixed – unless your MOT certificate is still valid, or you’re driving the car to get repairs.

What to bring to an MOT

You don’t need to bring any documents with you to an RAC Approved Garage. We can access the information we need online. Just bring the vehicle that’s being tested and we’ll take it from there.

You should also bring the locking wheel nut key, just in case our technicians need to remove the wheels. And don’t forget to remove your personal items from the boot and back seat.

What’s checked in an MOT?

An MOT involves dozens of checks, including your fuel and exhaust systems, brakes, tyres, lights, mirrors, seatbelts and windscreen wipers. Just so you know, it’s doesn’t check the condition of the engine, clutch and gearbox.

To give your car the best chance of passing its MOT, have a look at our handy MOT checklist. Passing your MOT first time can save you the cost of a re-test.

What happens if I fail my MOT?

If your car fails its MOT:

  • You’ll get a ‘refusal of MOT certificate’ (VT30)
  • You can only drive away if your current MOT certificate is still valid, or there are no ‘dangerous’ faults
  • You need to have your car repaired and retested

Your ‘refusal of MOT certificate’ will explain why your car failed its MOT. It will also show what needs to be fixed for it to pass.

If you get your car tested, repaired and retested at the same test centre within 10 working days, you usually won’t have to pay an MOT retest fee. Sometimes there will be a partial retest fee to pay. Just ask your garage for more information.

If you drive a car that’s failed its MOT because of a ‘dangerous’ fault, you can be fined up to £2,500, be banned from driving and get three points on your licence.

Read our guide to finding the right garage to repair your car.


It’s quick and easy to book a car service online at an RAC Approved Garage.


Need to claim on your RAC Warranty? Just follow our simple online claims process.

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