National Car Testing Service

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ISO 17020 accredited for the conduct of the NCT

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What is examined
in the NCT

Watch the Video

Preparing for
your NCT

What is inspected in the NCT Tips on how best to prepare for your  NCT

There are three primary stages in the inspection process of the National Car Test. You can view a full list of the items which are covered in the National Car Test in the NCT manual which you can download on this website.  

You can also see when your vehicle is due for its NCT by clicking here

To help you best prepare for the test, NCTS has developed two short videos to give you an idea of what is inspected in the National Car Test and also what you need to do in advance of your NCT to help you best prepare your vehicle for the test.

Once your vehicle has undergone an NCT, you will receive a Vehicle Inspection Report (VIR) which will outline the test results for your vehicle. To help you understand this report a brief explanation of the VIR can be found here.

Why not also check out our frequently asked questions about the NCT.



Why the National Car Test Makes Sense:


1. Greater Road Safety

The NCT tests the roadworthiness of motor vehicles and identifies any defects, such as faulty brakes, Suspension and rusty bodywork. These defects must be repaired and the car must pass a re-test before the car owner will be issued with an NCT Certificate.

2. Environmental Protection

Harmful gases emitted from vehicle exhausts are an primary source of environmental pollution and have a negative effect on the environment and public health. A properly regulated car will be more reliable, run more efficiently and should use less fuel.

3. Economic Benefits

NCTS has offered employment opportunities to approximately 550 people throughout Ireland. The NCT has created positive spin-off benefits for other sectors of the motor industry, including, garages, importers, motor dealers and car parts, exhaust and tyre centres.

4. Advantages for the Public and the Motor Trade

A. The National Car Test is helping to reduce the number of road accidents by pointing out such defects as faulty brakes, worn tyres and defective headlight aim.

B. The NCT is conducted every 2 years for vehicles younger than 10 years and vehicles that are being presented for their 10th anniversary inspection or older than 10 years must undergo an annual inspection. This regular evaluation of cars will result in a more frequent car servicing culture, which will provide better fuel economy, reduce overall repair costs and lower the risk of breakdowns and hence could result in potentially lower insurance premiums.

C. Enhanced air and environment quality resulting from reduced exhaust emissions.


The Road Safety Authority contacts a sample of customers for the purposes of customer service research. If you do not wish to be contacted to undertake customer service research please send your name and address to: surveyoptout@rsa.ie and you will not be included in any future surveys.

Watch the Video

Preparing for
your NCT

Tips on how best to prepare for your  NCT Watch the Video

What is examined
in the NCT

What is inspected in the NCT