Car MOT Manual 2012 onwards

Lamps, Reflectors and Electrical Equipment - 1.2 Stop Lamps

This inspection applies to all stop lamps fitted.
Vehicles first used before 1 January 1936 are not required to be fitted with a stop lamp.

Stop lamps are not required to be fitted to vehicles used only during the hours of daylight, which are fitted with neither front nor rear position lamps, etc. See 1.1.A.

Vehicles first used before 1 January 1971 must be fitted with one stop lamp either on or to the offside of the vehicle centre line. If such a vehicle has two lamps fitted, it should be treated as a vehicle first used on or after 1 January 1971.

Vehicles first used on or after 1 January 1971 must be fitted with two obligatory stop lamps. Additional stop lamps fitted and connected must be tested. Where extra lamps are fitted and there is doubt as to whether they are connected, the benefit of this doubt should be given to the presenter.

On vehicles first used before 1 September 1965 it is acceptable for a stop lamp to be incorporated with a direction indicator lamp.

Tricycle and quadricycle requirements are detailed at Section 9.1.
Method of Inspection
1. Apply the service brake and check that the correct number of stop lamps:

a. are correctly positioned and secure Note: The precise position of obligatory lamps is not part of the inspection, but check visually that the lamps are at about the same height and the same distance from each side of the vehicle.

b. are working

c. are not obscured

d. are in good condition

Note: An effective proprietary repair e.g. lens repair tape etc. must be assessed on its merits, considering security, colour, light output and durability.

e. emit a steady red light

f. are not adversely affected by the operation of any other lamp.
Reason for Rejection
1. A stop lamp:

a. missing, insecure, obviously incorrectly positioned or does not face to the rear

b. inoperative or less than 50% of the light sources illuminating

c. obscured so that less than 50% of the lamp illuminating surface is visible from the rear

d. not visible from a reasonable distance due to excessive damage, deterioration, or having products on the lens or light source

e. shows other than a steady red light to the rear when any service brake is applied, or remains on when the service brake is released

f. adversely affected by the operation of any other lamp, e.g. dual-function lamps on foreign vehicles.

Reproduced from the MOT Inspection Manual by kind permission of THE VEHICLE INSPECTORATE.

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