NCT Checks and Testing
Be Prepared for National Car Test
Pre NCT Checks You Can Perform Yourself
- Checking Tyre Tread Depth
- Checking Fluid Levels
- Interior Advice
- Ensure your wheel nuts are visible for the test, if you have hubcaps they must be removed. Tighten wheel nuts if they are in any way loose.
- Verify that your tyres are inflated to the correct level; you can find the recommended pressure in the owner’s handbook.
- Check that your tyres do not have any uneven levels of wear; this indicates incorrect balancing or alignment.
- Tyres should have at least 1.6mm of tread.
- Investigate the sidewalls of your tires for any bumps or damage. This may cause a blowout when driving and can also be a reason for failing the test.
- You can get a quote for tyres here on our website.
- Check your brake fluid level, this is essential to the braking quality of your car. If you find that you do indeed need some then fear not, we have you covered.
- Ensure that the oil is at the correct level, remove the dipstick and wipe clean. Re-insert and remove, this time study where the oil level is on the dipstick. It should be between “add” and “full” or “min” and “max”. Using our Oil Selector Tool to guarantee you are using the right oil for your car.
- Top up your windscreen washer bottle if you need to, the tester may check that it is working. If you need some you can find it here.
- The interior should be cleaned and removed of clutter, it reflects badly on how you treat your car!
- Double check that all seatbelts are visible and moveable. Especially the middle belt in the back seat, this often gets stuck in the crevice.
- Beep your horn, it has to be working. The steering should not have too much play in it either.
- Ensure that you can adjust your wing mirrors while in the driver seat. You can find parts here if you encounter any problems.
- The boot of your car should be empty as the assessor will need to check your spare wheel.
- The car should be relatively clean as the underbody will be inspected while on the car lift.
- Your registration plates should be white with the traditional font and feature the following:IRL flag, county name in Irish and hyphens between the various elements.
- If you need new plates to comply with these regulations then you can purchase some here, all our number plates are NCT compliant.
- Confirm that your wiper blades are not perished in any way.
- Your windscreen must be free of any cracks, windscreen replacement is included free of charge with most insurance policies so check with them if you need to have it replaced.
- Mirrors should be free of debris and grime. They should be perfectly intact, you can find mirror glass here if you need to change your own.
- If you have tinted windows in the back of your car then check that they are in compliance with the regulations.
- Lights are a common failure area and it is often easily avoidable. Check that all bulbs are working, remember to check side lights and registration plate lights, these are often forgotten! If you need to replace any bulbs you can purchase them here.
- Alignment is something that can be adjusted yourself relatively easily. Firstly, check your alignment by driving up to a wall with your lights on. If you see a problem then attempt to level them using the dials on top of the lights, this will involve some trial and error.
- Ensure that there is no moisture in your front and rear lights from a crack/hole in the glass, this will result in your car failing.
- Front suspension is the most common fail in the NCT. In the video above you can see the areas to look out for.
- Confirm that your shock absorbers are not leaking any oil and that the shocks themselves are free to move when pressure is put on the front of the car.
- Fear not, you can find our suspension range here, feel free to use our live chat service if you are in any doubt!
- Brakes are crucial to the car’s road worthiness for obvious reasons. Your discs, pads and drums should be inspected, use a flashlight on all four corners. Braking parts can be found here for your car.
- Test that your brake pedal is not spongy by depressing it a few times.
- Assess your handbrake, it should be able to hold your car on a hill on its own. You should not have to lift it extremely high for it to engage, if this is the case then your cable needs to be adjusted.