Is a Cracked Windscreen an MOT Failure?

You can fail an MOT for a variety of reasons, with some more obvious than others. An MOT is designed to test the overall roadworthiness of your vehicle, so it’s not simply limited to checking the condition of your tyres or your engine.

A chip or crack on your windscreen can, depending on various factors, have an impact on your MOT result. In this article, we’re looking at exactly what a cracked windscreen means for your annual check up.

Is a Cracked Windscreen an MOT Failure?

Will my car fail its MOT with a cracked windscreen?

Taking a car with a cracked windscreen in for an MOT can quite easily result in a failure. There are two deciding factors when it comes to assessing a cracked windscreen during an MOT:

  • Size of the damage
  • Location of the chip/crack

If the damage is located in the driver’s line of vision, you are much more likely to fail an MOT. Larger chips and cracks in other areas of the windscreen will also be cause for an immediate failure.

Cracked windscreen penalty points

For an MOT, your windscreen is divided into zones. These zones have separate regulations for chips and cracks.

Zone A refers to the section of the windscreen directly in front of the driver. The centre of this zone is located above the steering wheel. You will fail your MOT if there are any chips or cracks present in this area measuring over 10mm in diameter.

The rest of the windscreen is labelled as Zone B. As a rule, if there are chips or cracks measuring over 40mm in diameter anywhere else on the windscreen – including the area swept by your wipers – you will fail your MOT. The key difference between the two zones is the location. Small chips in the driver’s line of view can limit visibility, posing a serious driving hazard, which is less of an issue elsewhere on the windscreen.

While chips in Zone B might not constitute a fail, they will be noted by your tester. Even the smallest chips can quickly develop into something more serious, so it’s always recommended to have a small chip or crack repaired as soon as possible.

Is a Cracked Windscreen an MOT Failure? - 1st Call Windscreens Ltd

MOTs and your windscreen

A cracked windscreen isn’t the only thing your tester will be on the lookout for. An MOT also takes into account the condition of your windscreen wipers.

If your wipers have come loose, are damaged, or do not work to an effective standard, then you will fail your MOT.

Windscreen wipers play a vital role in road safety; they keep the windscreen clear from obstruction. If they are unable to do this properly, even the shortest drive can be dangerous to undertake.

One thing that is easy to forget about is your windscreen washer fluid. The washers works with your wipers to keep your windscreen clean and clear from debris. You will fail an MOT if there isn’t enough washer fluid, or if the nozzles are blocked or impeded.

Your wipers and washers will be tested during an MOT, so it’s definitely worth checking both beforehand. They are among the easiest parts of your car to fix yourself, so make sure to have any problems resolved before your MOT. This could be as simple as replacing your wipers or topping up your washer fluid – well worth the minimal time and effort!


1st Call Windscreens offer a 24 hour windscreen repair service to drivers throughout Maidstone, Gillingham, Sittingbourne, Chatham, Rochester and the surrounding Medway Towns. Our experienced team are on hand to repair windscreens for all kinds of vehicles, and we can also replace your windscreen if the damage is too significant. To find out more about our windscreen repair services, dont hesitate to get in touch with our friendly team today.

Questions? - We can call you back.