Car MOT Manual 2012 onwards

1.4 Flashing Type

This inspection applies to all direction indicators and hazard warning devices fitted.

Direction indicators and hazard warning 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 Nor are they required on vehicles first used before 1 January 1936. However, if they are fitted, they must be tested.

Vehicles first used before 1 September 1965 may have direction indicators incorporated with stop lamps, or combined with front or rear position lamps, in which case front indicators may be white and rear indicators red.

Vehicles first used on or after 1 April 1986 must be fitted with one side repeater indicator on each side. Instead of a separate lamp, the side repeater might be part of the front direction indicator if it includes a wraparound lens.

Lamps incorporating a side repeater are marked either with an E mark in a circle or an e mark in a rectangle above which is a number 5. However, some vehicles are fitted with a wraparound lens with no European approval markings. These can be tested by standing approximately 1000mm to the side of the vehicles rear bumper with the indicator on. If amber light can be seen coming through the front lens not a reflection this is acceptable.

Direction indicator tell tales may be audible or visual. A tell-tale is not required if one or more direction indicators on each side can be seen by the driver from the drivers seat.

Hazard warning devices are not required on vehicles first used before 1 April 1986, but if one is fitted it must be tested.

The hazard warning lamp tell tale may be a separate light or the same as the indicator tell-tale. However, it must be a flashing light.

Tricycle and quadricycle requirements are detailed at Section 9.1.

A semaphore arm must illuminate when in operation. It may flash, but is not required to do so.
Method of Inspection
A. Flashing Type

1. Check the presence, security and operation of the selector switch.

2. Operate the left and right direction indicators in turn and check:

a. the drivers tell tale warning device for presence and operation
b. that the minimum number of direction indicators are securely fitted

Note: The precise position of direction indicators 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.
c. they are working
d. they are not obscured
e. they 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.
f. that every direction indicator emits amber light except vehicles first used before 1 September 1965
g. the flashing rate
Note: It may be necessary to run the engine when checking the flashing rate. h. they are not adversely affected by the operation of any other lamp.
Reason for Rejection
1. A selector switch missing, insecure, faulty, or not able to be operated from the normal driving position.

2. A direction indicator:

a. tell tale missing or inoperative
b. missing, insecure, obviously incorrectly positioned or does not face to the front, rear or side as appropriate
c. inoperative or less than 50% of the light sources illuminating
d. obscured so that less than 50% of the lamp illuminating surface is visible from the front or rear as appropriate
e. not visible from a reasonable distance due to excessive damage, deterioration, or having products on the lens or light source
f. shows light of an incorrect colour
g. does not flash at 60 to 120 times per minute
h. adversely affected by the operation of another lamp e.g. dual function lamps on foreign vehicles.

1.4 Hazard Warning Device

Method of Inspection
B. Hazard Warning Device

1. Check that the hazard warning device: a. is fitted where required
b. is working
c. operates using only one switch
d. switch for presence, security and operation
e. tell-tale is working correctly
f. operates all the direction indicators
simultaneously with the ignition switched both on and off.
Reason for Rejection
1. A hazard warning device:

a. not fitted
b. inoperative
c. operated by more than one switch
d. switch missing, insecure or faulty
e. tell-tale not working correctly
f. does not cause all the direction indicators to flash simultaneously, with the ignition both on and off.

1.4 Semaphore Type

Method of Inspection
C. Semaphore Type

1. Operate the direction indicators
and check:

a. the operation of each indicator b. that every direction indicator emits an amber light
c. selector switch presence, security, condition and operation.

2. Check the correct operation of the tell-tale.
Reason for Rejection
1. A semaphore arm:

a. does not extend or retract smoothly
b. does not show an amber light to the front and rear
c. a selector switch missing, insecure or faulty.

2. The tell-tale is missing or not working correctly.

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