At Forge Garage Repairs we get our fair share of stories to tell, the epic fails as they're known in the trade. Here's a few MOT Tales that we have come across from many years in the trade and a few others from fellow MOT Testers that subscribe to the Gov.UK website and their blog called Matters of Testing.
This photo shows damage to the wheel and tyre believed to be the result of a pothole.This type of damage is becoming a more common sight particularly as more vehicles are now sporting lower profile tyres.
In this case the damage to the tyre and the edge of the rim gives a clear indication of the impact and prompts a closer investigation. But the crack to the rim could’ve easily been missed without the corresponding wheel damage highlighting the impact area.
Halloween Horror - A Nightmare on Any Street
Well we have seen cracked and broken wheel rims before but not many as bad as this. It is a surprise that the tyre has remained inflated, let alone on the rim, and made it for its MOT. To their credit the owner was aware of the damage to the wheel, but had not bothered to get it changed as they had lost the wheel nut key.
Halloween Horror - The Track Rod End Is Nigh
An example of poor workmanship found on a Toyota Land Cruiser during an MOT Test. Someone had attempted to remove the track rod ends. After removing a nut they replaced it with a wood screw to make what they thought was a safe repair. This is obviously a failure under RfR 2.2 C1 g of the manual “a retaining or locking device missing” along with the damaged dust cover (RfR 2.2 C1 c). The track rod end on the opposite side was just as dangerous.
Halloween Horror - Fit To Burst
No tricks or treats here. A Peugeot 206 presented for MOT recently. From a customer's view the tyres look fine but it's only when inspecting the inside tyre wall and tread seam do you discover the potential danger of this tyre. Delamination has exposed the steel cords that could have lead to a catastrophic tyre failure. Not the type of surprise you'd want at any time of year, least of all Halloween and heading into winter time.
A brake caliper on a Corsa. The car apparently had new brake pads fitted by a friend which had been in use for around 3 weeks. It looks like, after fitting the brake pads, their friend forgot to refit the caliper retaining bolts. Thankfully the caliper continued to provide some braking effect but you do wonder how the driver failed to notice something was wrong.
Corroded Brake Pipes
This picture of a 1998 Fiesta had only 43,000 miles on the clock when presented for test. On inspection the rear brake pipes, including unions and brake hose ferrules, were heavily corroded and leaking fluid under pressure.
It goes to show that the lack of regular maintenance can result in potentially dangerous defects just as much as badly carried out repairs.
Tyre Side Wall Bulge
Here’s an extreme example of a bulge in a tyre’s side wall showing that the internal structure has failed. It would only be a matter of time before the tyre rapidly deflates, resulting in potential loss of control of the vehicle. Clearly it makes you wonder how this hadn’t been picked up earlier by the vehicle user - or had it been ignored?
Remember, when inspecting a tyre it’s not just the tread and tread depth we’re interested in. The whole tyre must be examined for damage, such as cuts, tears and signs of possible internal structural failure. This will usually be obvious if there are lumps or bulges on the outer surface caused by the separation or failure of the underlying structure and cords of the tyre.
In this example, the existence of the underlying failure of the tyre’s structure is clear with air leaking through the carcass resulting in a large bulge on the outer wall. However, sometimes signs of potential failure, like deformed shape or lumps and undulations in the outer surfaces, can only be identified by closer examination.
Broken Bush Carrier on Front Suspension
This photo showing the rear bush carrier for the lower suspension arm clearly broken at one of its mounting points.
There was no evidence of play when the suspension was checked at the road wheel under section 2.5 of the manual. So a careful visual inspection of the mounting was needed to identify the fracture.
In this case the break is clearly visible and recorded as a failure under reason for rejection 2.4 G1 ‘a suspension component or its attachment bracket or linkage - cracked, fractured or insecure.
Stapled Seat Belt
A seat belt repair on a 2005 Suzuki Vitara which was presented for an MOT. On inspecting the rear seat belts, Ian found that both outer belts had been damaged. Someone had cut out the damaged areas and stapled the two parts back together using staples only suitable for paper.
Both rear seatbelts on this vehicle were failed for ‘a seat belt which had obviously been repaired’ (RfR 5.2 2c). When checking the condition of any seat belt, testers must also look for cuts or damage that obstruct correct operation of the belt or significantly weaken the webbing. Remember to pay particular attention to areas around the anchorage, buckles and loops, which may not be readily visible.
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