Driver explains how to avoid 'unnecessary costs' and 'hefty bills' before annual MOT test

A car doing an MOT test

The motorist explained how drivers could prepare their cars for an MOT test

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 24/09/2023

- 08:00

One motorist was able to save around £600 by double-checking issues with his vehicle

A driver is urging other motorists to check their vehicles before heading to an MOT test to avoid any extra unnecessary charges.

Many motorists are anxious about going to a garage for an MOT test or car repairs with extortionate prices becoming a normality.

George Killeen, who was a university student in Norwich, was almost massively overcharged by a mechanic wanting to fix his 2009 Volkswagen Polo.

The 23-year-old had issues with his vehicle and after a trip to the mechanics was hit with a quote of £900 for an ABS fault and a wheel bearing problem.

George Killeen

George Killeen said one of his friends was quoted £500 for a pollen filter replacement


Although the car had been checked over by a professional, George felt that something else was wrong and purchased an OBD scanner to see for himself.

By checking his vehicle at home, he found that there was nothing wrong with the ABS, saving himself £600 in the process.

George now wants to help other motorists save as much money as they can amid the cost of living crisis when it comes to repairs with their vehicles.

Speaking to GB News, he said: “Since my experience, I have had countless conversations with friends and family who have gone to their garage and come out with hefty bills detailing costs for car parts they weren’t even aware existed.

“One of my friends was charged almost £500 for changing a pollen filter.

“Being recent graduates during a cost-of-living crisis, money is incredibly tight, and it can be incredibly overwhelming to think of the potential costs you will be faced with when your car goes for its MOT or service, that you potentially can’t afford or will leave you totally skint.

“At the very least, an OBD device can help remove some of the stress and anxiety surrounding those visits by giving you confidence and peace of mind ahead of any garage visits, so that you can avoid unnecessary costs and feel more in control.”

On-Board Diagnostics shows drivers the health of their vehicles and lets them know if anything is going wrong.

Drivers in Northern Ireland are being issued with a particularly urgent warning, as the cost of an MOT test is set to increase for cars and LGVs from £30.50 to £38.

Dan Meeghan, UK country manager for Carly, explained how drivers can see the state of their vehicle without needing to visit a garage.

“All modern cars have been fitted with OBD systems, which monitor a vehicle’s ‘under the bonnet’ health," he told GB News.

Mr Meeghan said: “This includes everything from engine and gearbox, to ABS, Airbags and traction control safety systems – basically anything you can’t see with the naked eye.


A mechanic doing an MOT test

Drivers are being urged to check their car before taking it for an MOT test


“An OBD scanner allows you to retrieve this hidden data by simply plugging the device into an OBD port, which is in every modern car, usually found under the steering wheel. The device very much resembles a USB key.”

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