Dirty vehicles one of the top reasons for MOT refusals in 2023

A dirty vehicle was one of the top reasons MOTs have been refused this year, with hundreds of cars turned away.

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) found 526 cars were refused for being too filthy so far this year – the fourth highest refusal reason.

Sitting top was down to the test centre not being authorised to test the vehicle, with 2988 refused tests so far this year. This could be down to the centre not being able to test motorbikes – there are seven MOT categories in total.

The second highest reason for an MOT to get refused, with 1112 refusals, is that the tester was unable to open a part of the vehicle which should be easy to open, this includes; doors, fuel caps, engine covers and boots.

The FOI request was put in by Select Car Leasing

In third, with 785 refusals, is because the tester believes inspecting the vehicle may cause damage to the vehicle or be dangerous for the person doing the test.

There were also 384 tests refused because the test was not paid for in advance, 302 refusals because the vehicle was not fit to be driven, 139 over suspect maintenance of the diesel engine, and 57 because the vehicle emitted substantial smoke.

Managing director at Select Car Leasing – the firm behind the FOI – Graham Conway, said: “Our research proves that not all vehicles are someone’s ‘pride and joy’ – and hundreds are seemingly neglected to the point of being downright dangerous.

“It’s one thing for a car, van or motorcycle to fail an MOT, quite another to be in such a sorry state of disrepair and cleanliness that an inspection can’t be granted in the first place.“

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