Types of MOT Test Bay for 2020 – Part One: Motorcycle Testing

In previous blog posts we have commented on the types of test bay that are available to new applicants and those existing test station operators who are already approved within the MOT scheme who may be seeking a new bay or an upgrade to an existing installation.

The last article we published on this was in 2015 so what, if anything, has changed in the last 5 years? – this blog article brings the story up-to-date and was written in January 2020.

General Information

There are 3 common classes of vehicle which we use to transport ourselves and light freight around the UK. These are;

  1. Motorcycles tested on a Class I/II MOT Bay
  2. Motor-tricycles and Cars and Light Vans tested on a Class 4 compliant MOT bay
  3. Vehicles in excess of 3.5 Tonnes GUW – such as dual wheel sprinter type vans which are tested on a Class 7 MOT testing bay (which normally also allows Class 4 testing).

In this article we will concentrate solely on Class I/II MOT test bays with future articles dealing with lift based and pit based bays for Class IV or Class IV/VII testing.

Equipment for Class I/II testing

In order to test motorcycles you will need the following equipment to be installed, to be calibrated and with all the supporting paperwork proving the equipment can be used in an MOT bay.

Headlight Tester – This should be a rail mounted and from the DVSA’s list of acceptable equipment.

Roller Brake Tester – Again from the DVSA’s acceptable list of equipment

Decelerometer – This must be suited for Class I/II testing (meaning it requires an approved method of fixing it to the subject motorcycle). Of course it also needs to be from the approved list of acceptable equipment

Wheel Alignment Equipment – Either 2 straight bars or 2 strong cords are required for frame checks

Signage & Ancillaries – As of October 2018 the following signage and ancillaries are required;

  • 3 Triangles – this must be the approved DVSA sign which should not be displayed until the authorisation is granted at the end of the project process.
  • Reception & Waiting Area Sign
  • Viewing Area Available Sign
  • Viewing Area Sign
  • MOT Notice Board suitable for 6 sheets of A4 paper in portrait orientation

Installation Arrangements for Class I/II testing

  • For dedicated Motorcycle premises there are 2 common solutions;

Bay 1Inline, symmetrical installation with the headlight tester rails mounted on the workshop floor surface rather than being recessed in the ground; which does reduce overall bay lengths but requires more difficult civil preparations.

Using an in-line symmetrical installation requires a floor space of around 5.9m long and 3.2m wide – Yes! this is significantly bigger than a motorcycle but one must not forget that a motorcycle with a sidecar might also present itself to the test station and that must be accommodated if the DVSA approval is to be granted.

The overall bay length can be minimised to 4.6m long is the workshop owner is prepared to recess the headlight testing rails.

Side by side installations have the roller brake tester alongside the headlight testing standing area. Ordinarily this arrangement is proposed by suppliers as a means to accommodate 2 simultaneous tests on a single test bay however this statement is not always factually correct if the general inspection area of 3.2m x 3.7m is overlaid across these 2 zones since when an “underside inspection” is being conducted, both the headlight tester standing areas and the brake testing standing areas become active the moment the general inspection area is populated with the test vehicle.

That said however, the overall length of the bay can be reduced to the 4.6m absolute minimum dimension as the headlight tester rails are outside of this zone (alongside in fact) – however the width of the bay increases to 3.6m allowing for equipment minimum clearances and the side by side nature of the standing areas versus the 3.2m that a symmetrical layout allows.

General Arrangement Drawings for Class I & II MOT Test bays can be found in the following location (just click the link) –


Motorcycle Bays Combined with Class 4 or Class 7 MOT bays

There is another way that a motorcycle MOT bay can be integrated into a testing bay layout and that would be where the motorcycle brake testing element (and sometimes the headlight testing equipment) are shared with Class 4 or Class 4 & 7 equipment.

In integrating the motorcycle testing element into the Class 4 or 7 testing bay we should always be mindful of a couple of factors;

  • An adaptor plate is added to a Class 4 or Class 7 roller set to reduce the aperture size of the rollers. Live weights are required for the Class 2 test and so therefore testing motorcycles is normally only conducted on an Automated Brake Tester.
  • The layout arrangement for the entire bay needs to be designed in such a way as to allow the maximum number of tests to be conducted without the need for additional cover plates. This is achieved by minimizing the amount of overlap of the individual standing areas.
  • Testing a motorcycle using a Class 4 or Class 7 brake tester is an DVSA approved, but rudimentary method of brake force measurement by comparison to using a dedicated motorcycle brake tester. Therefore if you are serious about testing motorcycles rather than just “adding a string to your bow” then investing in the correct product still remains the correct solution.

So from 2015 to 2020 it is true to say that not much has changed from an equipment or layout perspective however, be sure to read further blog posts because the story for Classes 4 & 7 is a completely different one with changes a-plenty!

If you are considering including a motorcycle test bay to your garage operatations then call us on 0844 800 9785!

As a manufacturer of this equipment we can supply you with the best equipment at a very competitive price and with the peace of mind at the outset that all GETECH equipment is supplied with a 5 year extended part warranty as standard. Our motorcycle mot bay package can be viewed online simply by clicking HERE.

getech-garage-equipment-logoGETECH supply MOT bays for all vehicle classes. As a manufacturer within the MOT scheme we are perfectly positioned to remain abridged of current and future known legislation. With a design ethos for total modularity, our equipment is some of the most flexible currently available in the UK.

For more information on GETECH call during office hours, visit http://getech.org.uk or mail info@getech.org.uk.

One Reply to “Types of MOT Test Bay for 2020 – Part One: Motorcycle Testing”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.