Heavy Goods Vehicles and buses (including coaches), are to have an MOT test every year, (also known as an ‘annual test), like any other vehicle. HGV’s first annual test, should be when the vehicle has reached 12 months old, and also the trailers must be tested, one year after they were first sold or supplied. The standard MOT tests are very precise in Britain, but with HGV’s, buses and coaches, they are more strict due to the size, weight, and the amount of time spent on the roads.
Checks carried out on HGV’s
The checks carried out on the annual test are very precise. When the vehicle arrives at the test centre, the HGV’s are parked on an even surface. The tester will check the vehicle inside and out, this includes inside the driver’s cabin. There are many things that are checked during the inspection, these are:
- The driver and passenger door opens and closes securely
- The tyres, which have to be in a satisfactory condition, and of the correct rating for the vehicle
- All mirrors and fairings, which need to be securely fixed and in good condition
- Headlights, fog lights, high beam, side lights, indicators, hazards, and brake lights, should be in working order and aligned correctly.
- The spray suppressors (mudguards), must be the right size for the HGV
- The vehicle’s identity against the VTG6 Plate
- Potential oil/fuel leaks
- Axle alignment and bearings
- Foot brakes and air brakes
- They look for any possible mechanical faults
- Tyres are checked on the shaker plates
Checks carried out on Buses and Coaches
A walk-around check is advised by the Government to ensure that there are no visible damages and are roadworthy. Below is a list of checks that are carried out on the annual test, which is similar to the HGV annual test but there are more checks carried out due to them carrying passengers onboard.
- A corrosion assessment
- Tyres, brakes and wheel arches
- Seatbelts and supplements
- Emissions and exhaust
- Drivers/passengers doors and emergency exits
- Exterior of the body including the luggage compartment
- Passenger entrance and exit steps and platforms
- Mirrors and indirect vision devices
- Windscreen washers and wipers
- Steering control and horn
- Hand lever operating mechanical brakes and electronic park brake controls
- Condition of the chassis
- Electrical wiring and equipment
- Oil and waste leaks
- Axles, Stub Axles and Wheel bearings
- Direction Indicators and Hazard warning lamps
HGV’s that carry dangerous goods
HGV’s that carry dangerous goods have the same checks as the normal HGV’s, however they have to undergo another test.
Certain dangerous goods vehicles must have an extra test and certificate over and above the normal heavy goods vehicle roadworthiness test. This is known informally as an ‘ADR test’. It ensures that vehicles comply with the European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR). Vehicle requirements vary according to the nature of the goods being carried.
A VTG15, should be completed in all cases where vehicles subject to dangerous / hazardous loads are produced at a test station, whether for annual test or are accompanying another vehicle. Each time a vehicle is required to attend a test station, a new VTG15 will be required.
Failing the Annual Test
The most common reasons for HGV’s failing the annual test are:
- Parking brake and secondary and service brake performance
- Headlamps and Lamps
How many times does a HGV’s require a brake test?
A HGV, is advised to have at least three brake checks a year, due to the amount of time the vehicles spend on the road. Even though its not compulsory, it is strongly recommended to ensure these checks are carried out in addition to the MOT.