HID lamps and new 2012 MOT regulations

Reading alot recently that the changes that have just come in will leve most aftermarket kits failing the new test as they have no wash or self levelling system.

Thought I’d look at what the actual wording is and what official guidance has been given and dug this up - http://www.dft.gov.uk/vosa/repository/technicalpenpicture3-lighting.pdf

The important extract is:

"Vehicles with HID headlamps are therefore required to have a headlamp washing system (a wiper is not required) and be self levelling, which may be achieved either by the use of either headlamp or suspension levelling systems.

The presence and operation of these headlamp cleaning and levelling devices has been added to the test. Therefore, if a mandatory headlamp levelling or cleaning device is missing, inoperative or otherwise obviously defective, the vehicle will fail.

The Department for Transport considers that after-market systems should be required to meet the same safety standards as that applied in respect of these lamps at vehicle Type Approval. Therefore, in order to pass the MOT test, vehicles fitted with after-market HID systems would also need to be fitted with headlamp cleaning and self-levelling systems.

[color:#FF0000]It is also worthy of note that a few high performance vehicles fitted with HID headlamps that have barely any luggage space and stiff suspension do not require a self-levelling system.[/color]"

So there looks like a get out of jail card for one element at least.


What other changes were there?

Some stuff around ECU and airbag warning lights I think

Summary changes are listed here:


Another one to get us will be the fact the a missing cat is a fail item.

There’s some debate whether this is an issue if you have swapped driver’s seat rails for fixed ones - Seats are now covered in sub-section �A� and there are a couple of additional checks to be made. Firstly, it will be necessary to check that the driver�s seat fore and aft adjustment mechanism can be secured in the selected positions. There is no requirement to check all, or even several possible positions, just that the two or three selected secure the seat as intended. On electrically operated mechanisms, simply that the motor moves the seat back and forth
will suffice.

Changed your steering wheel on one originally with airbags - Checks of airbags will apply to all airbags fitted as original equipment, regardless of their location, and a vehicle will fail if any airbag is obviously missing or defective.

Before the days of MOT Computerisation, many testers incorrectly failed steering and suspension ball joints if the dust cover was split or missing. Well now they will be able to correctly fail them as the Directive requires that these are now included in the test; therefore if a ball joint dust cover is missing or no longer prevents the ingress of dirt etc. it will be a Reason for Rejection (RfR).

Rear drive shafts, where they form part of the suspension, were already testable items, but as a result of the Directive there are now some additional checks. Drive shaft support bearings, where fitted, must now be checked for excessive wear; additionally, drive shaft coupling gaiters missing, or in such a condition that they no longer prevent the ingress of dirt, also become Reasons for Rejection.

As for rear drive shafts that form part of the suspension, front drive shaft support bearings and inner coupling gaiters also become testable. The RfR wording for gaiters has also been changed to cover all aspects of the gaiter failing to prevent the ingress of dirt.

Front to rear propshafts still remain outside the scope of the test.

Smoked lens covered may now fail - Checking that lamps are in good condition is a familiar part of the test, but a new Reason for Rejection (RfR) has been added in respect to the lamps being visible from a reasonable distance. �Products on the lens or light source� is now an RfR as well the previous �excessive damage or deterioration�. This new RfR also applies to the checks of all other lamps.

All visible electrical wiring must not be in such a condition that it is insecure, inadequately supported or likely to cause a short. Any bare wiring exposed due to damaged insulation will therefore be rejected.

If you tow - Trailer electrical sockets, where fitted, will need to be secure and not damaged to the extent that the plug could not be securely connected. An additional check of the connectivity of the wiring will apply to 13-pin trailer sockets.

This connectivity check will require an approved device to be plugged into the socket while the position lamps, stop lamps, rear fog lamp and direction indicators are operated. The device will show whether or not each system is wired as per the requirements and clearly any non-compliance will result a failure.

All of this is very informative …but , why not just build up a long term rapport with a trusted MOT tester ?
If big brother gets his way we,ll all be driving Eco electric cars before too long .
I’m not advocating bent Mots ,but just appying life experience…

Anyone in the midlands wanna meet Lemmy,s brother ?
He,s my MOT tester !!

[quote=jfk]All of this is very informative …but , why not just build up a long term rapport with a trusted MOT tester ?

I agree it has helped in the past if you have someone who knows you and the car.

Had a complete nightmare a few years ago when a well known southern specialist could not get my car through an MOT and resorted to some expensive and bizarre methods to try!

I’m not advocating bent Mots ,but just appying life experience…[/quote]

“Applying life experience” is becoming increasingly harder to do though. Some of the rules are quite black and white and no amount of life experience can get around this without getting a “bent” one!

Whilst some of these changes are good and bring the test more up to date with advances in car technology, I think the legislation is moving towards a goal where cars will be sealed for life once they leave the production line in terms of modifications or improvements by the end user.

Also slightly mad that previously things like missing engine mounts were not part of the test, and even today defective prop shafts are not covered.

Have to say I’m quite pleased that the changes will (hopefully…) rid the roads of at least some of the poorly-fitted HID kits fitted to chavved-up Corsas, blinged BMWs and suchlike :slight_smile:

Still, when there was a recent story of an MOT Inspector taking a test station to task for not failing someone for “…an inappropriately located air freshener…” (it was hanging from the mirror) then I do wonder!