Expensive Alex,

After 11 years the speedometer needle of my Skoda Octavia not lights up. My vendor is quoting over £1200 to interchange all the instrument cluster. Is that this fault an MOT fail, and have you learnt of a specialist in East Sussex who can repair it?

– RD

Expensive Dr,

The reply to your first query is “in all probability”. There are two doable faults associated to the speedometer illumination; the primary is “not sufficiently lit”, which is a minor fault, which can lead to a discover, and “unlit” which is a significant fault and can trigger the automotive to fail the take a look at.

Nevertheless it is set will depend upon the prerogative of the MOT tester, though I feel if the needle is not illuminated, that is nearly as good because the speedometer is not illuminated in any respect, that is why I feel it would in all probability be categorised as a significant fail.

In fact, some testers might comply with the letter of the handbook, during which case the speedo is technically “not sufficiently lit”, which will not fail, however provide you with an opinion.

Both means, it is one thing you will need to kind out quickly. Partly as a result of for those who get pulled over for going over the pace restrict at night time and also you attempt to use that as an excuse, the cop may give you a ticket for driving a automotive that is not roadworthy, no matter no matter its standing on the technical management.

A excessive price is to be anticipated, as for such a small bulb it’s a large job by way of labor, requiring the removing of enormous elements of the dashboard and the dismantling of the handset instruments to entry it.

A phrase of recommendation: substitute all the opposite bulbs when you’re at it. This should not add as much as numerous additional price, however it would prevent from having to begin over if one other bulb fails.

I’d nonetheless advocate, as you counsel, discovering a great impartial specialist keen to tackle the job. It nonetheless will not price you peanuts, but it surely ought to prevent fairly a bit of cash over what the principle vendor is providing you.

The closest specialist I’ve expertise with is HC Motors of Charlwood close to Gatwick Airport. They’ve a great popularity and I used to be impressed with their service.

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