Do I need indicators for motorcycle MOT?

Do you find the MOT for your motorcycle confusing? What you must have and what is optional does not seem to make sense?

 Motorcycles registered before 1 August 1986 do not need indicators to pass an MOT. After this date, they must have secure directional indicators and flashing amber lights. The exception to the rule is off-road bikes that carry one passenger or motorcycles with 30 mph top-speed do not need indicators for an MOT.

Do all motorcycles need indicators to pass an MOT?

No. If your motorcycle is pre 1st August 1986, you do not need indicators to pass an MOT. Off-road motorcycles that carry only one passenger do not need indicators to pass an MOT.

If your motorcycle or moped does not have a top speed greater than 30 mph, indicators are not required to be fitted to pass an MOT.

However, if your motorcycle does have indicators fitted despite being registered pre 1st August 1986, the indicators must work to pass the MOT.

If your motorcycle does not require indicators in a shell but is fitted, the indicators must work before an MOT is granted.

What constitutes a working legal indicator? The indicators must be secure; the indicators must flash between 60 and 120 flashes per minute to be considered road legal.

Your indicators need to have amber lenses or amber bulbs front and rear that are working.

Your indicator switch must be secure with its operation unhindered by any other switches. Your indicators will have an audible warning that other road users can hear.

Do I need to use arm signals?

Suppose your motorcycle was manufactured before 1st August 1986 or is an off-road motorcycle or does not have sufficient power to exceed 30 mph. In that case, you will need to give arm signals to warn other road users of your intentions to turn left or right.

It is a good idea to familiarise yourself with arm signals that can be used in a failure of your motorcycle’s electrical wiring powering indicators and lights.

From time to time, you will come across instances when it is a good idea to reinforce your intentions to turn neven if your indicators are working.

Can I get a motorcycle MOT without indicators?

Yes. If your motorcycle meets the strict criteria for not being fitted with indicators, you can be issued an MOT.

However, if your motorcycle does meet the criteria not to have indicators but is fitted, then the aftermarket indicators must work. Otherwise, you will not be issued with an MOT.

Unlike some countries, the indicators in the UK and Europe must flash amber front and rear, the lenses cannot be cracked or loose, and the rate your indicators flash must meet the prescribed number of flashes per minute within the given tolerance.