30 responses

  1. Allan Cavanagh
    April 16, 2009

    And the centres close for lunch.

  2. Alfonso Armenta
    April 17, 2009

    Much like what happened with the learner driver laws, enforcement of this will be as irregular… I had fortunately booked a few weeks ago so it is due next Friday, but if the car fails the test the retest date will likely leave me for many weeks without the bloody disc.

    This banana-republic knee-jerk reaction to try to make the usual government-issue money-rackets more efficient is just pathetic.

    And surely they could have notified the NCTS to update their servers to be able to hold the likely ten-fold increase in load?

  3. ann
    April 17, 2009

    its just a money making scam.my sister brought her car in to the nct.she watched it getting checked out and noticed that the mechanic couldent open the back left door.she had left the child lock on but the idiot mechanic dident check that.when it was all finished a polish man came over to her and said the car had failed the test.she said why and the man said the back door wouldent open she explained what was wrong but he wouldent listen and kept saying no its failed.she ended up getting the manager and he sorted the problem.some of the mechanics are also know for taking 50 euro notes out of ash trays for a pass.there giving fails on stupid things like ur window being stuck if a window is stuck it dosent stop ur car from doing wat its meant to do

  4. Alfonso Armenta
    April 20, 2009

    Hmmm. So I leave a couple of 50s in the ashtray. Get my pass and THEN report the NCT mechanic for stealing money from my car :P

  5. Vee
    April 21, 2009

    I’m having the same problem… car is due its NCT this week… I didn’t receive a reminder letter and haven’t changed address or anything, and can’t get through to that stupid number for the last few days…. ffs, do they think we’ve nothing better to be doing?

  6. Gerard
    April 21, 2009

    I have a similar problem, my NCT expires on 26th April, got no notification to test, tried to book test online yesterday morning but get a message from the website to say it doesn’t have a record of my car on the database, even though it has been NCT’s before and was booked online.

    Rang NCTS, was half way through explaining my problem to someone when the line was dropped and have not been able to get anyone since.

    Cannot understand the incompetence in this country, is there no forward planning in any new scheme that is introduced.

  7. vic Lloyd
    April 21, 2009

    This is now April 22nd and the web site for NCT is still down and phones are still unavailable. this is absurd. It will deal with traffic problem if they take half a million cars of the road next month. A Govt. money saving measure ?

  8. Tania
    April 24, 2009

    My NCT is up at the start of May and I always get a letter to remind me and the date is booked and all so I was waiting on that letter this year as well not knowing that now they don’t send out that letter anymore. Someone told me there and I’m just after booking in for the test.
    The date is 17th of June, there is nothing earlier than that, so what happens to me when I get stopped?
    Will I still get points even when my test is booked?

  9. Tom Doyle
    April 24, 2009

    Hi Tania

    I will personally be carryinng the confirmation letter in my car with me at all times. That should be enough for any decent Gard to let you go on your merry way!


  10. gcluskey
    May 1, 2009

    My NCT has been out of date for a year now, I got it booked in now for July and will keep the letter on me. I’ve been stopped before and only questioned twice about the NCT and I explained that I was getting the engine fixed and had the car off the road for a while. Unless the garda that stops you is a nazi bastard with nothing better to do then they should be ok. Most gardai are nice enough and will be easy on you provided you’ve a valid excuse and weren’t driving like a headcase

  11. Pete
    May 25, 2009

    whats the story if your car is 4 mts out of date of a nct, and you have booked your NCT but its not untill september i can take the test, would i be getting 5 points if i am caught???

  12. Oisín
    July 2, 2009

    Typical Irish government political showboating. They suddenly declare that you MUST do a particular thing which a) costs a lot of money, especially if your car fails because there was some rust on the exhaust pipe (FFS) and you have to pay another €50 and wait for another test, and b) is poorly organised/backlogged/slow.

    So, to comply with the law, drivers either have to book months in advance or stop driving from the expiry date of the last NCT until the randomly scheduled one is due, which could potentially be over a month. Which is clearly unacceptable, given the money and effort needed to maintain a car (e.g. for younger male drivers, each week you’re insured but unable to drive for arbitrary silly reasons is €40-60 down the drain).

    This is similar to the learner permit scheme – a sorely needed change since far too many unskilled drivers are on the roads doing silly things (not to mention “skilled” drivers also doing silly things of course), but then it turns out that you could be waiting 2 months for a test, which most drivers have only a 50% chance of passing (for apparently arbitrary reasons – I’d like to know more on whether driving tests are fair, since I should have my first in September and am no expert driver by any means).

    If you’re going to introduce “hard and fast” laws and promise to punish people heavily for breaking them, then you should ensure that the mechanisms needed for us to comply with those laws are efficient, cheap and speedy.

  13. Simon Joyce
    November 12, 2009

    Website not working last night or again this morning. You can get through on the phone but they don’t even know there website is down!!

  14. Joe
    May 6, 2010

    The NCT is a scam.I don`t say this lightly but i know a few people that took their cars to their local garage to check it was ready and any parts needed were fitted for the test.They then went and did their nct test and failed it.one of them failed because of the headlights.They took the car back to the garage where it had its pre test check and the mechanic said “take it back down and have them test it again and it will pass”.So they took the car back (untouched since it failed) and it miraculously passed the 2nd time.Apparently the garage guys all know this happens and it`s just one of those things to them.This has happened to 3 people i know locally but what i dont understand is how is a state hired company that does the nct getting away with fraud? If this happend in the uk their would be an outcry and it would be all over the news.Here it`s accepted that this corruption and robbery of the citizens is part of normal life.
    Also someone who had similar problems was on a local radio station.He was a bit sharp with the nct tester guys and not friendly to them so they failed him on something.He fixed the problem and re-tested and they failed him on something else.This happend time after time until the penny dropped and he called the radio station.The radio dj called up the nct guys live on air and asked why they kept failing this person.They replied on air it was because they didn`t like this guys attitude!
    So what you can learn from this is your car could be 100% but if they are trying to raise more money or dont like you personally they can fail you till the cows come home and they can get away with it.

  15. Peter E O’Reilly
    July 12, 2010

    The following letter is one I sent to the “NCT” today(12/07/10) and I am awaiting a response !!!! any advice from elsewhere ??

    Hello at NCT, I am writing this correspondence to you as I am utterly outraged over an “observation” made by one of your Test Centre “mechanics” at the Mullingar Test centre last Friday afternoon (09/07/2010 @ 15:02). I own a 1994 Mercedes S-280 that I have owned and HAD TESTED for the last 10 years, at both Mullingar and Tullamore centres. This vehicle is in complete original condition and is maintained and looked-after like my own children.
    Last Friday, I was informed by one of your Test Centre employees that there was a problem with the “Rear Reflectors”. When I questioned his judgment, he was dismissive and essentially walked away…. This car is a Hand-Built Flag Ship of the S Class Mercedes family of cars and I was utterly “gob-smacked” at both his ignorance and dismissiveness. He has interpreted the Rear Reversing Cluster (See several examples of this car along with some other examples) as a Rear Reflector…
    This “mechanic” is apparently new to this centre and I cannot state how outrageously inaccurate and basically stupid this “observation” is…

    I will not let this issue rest and I look to you and your management to review and then reverse this “observation” with utmost speed. I hope I shall not have to resort to consulting the AA and PWC and solicitors if necessary, over this “observation” and look to you to act immediately in this matter.

    Please contact me at your earliest possible opportunity after you review the attached Photos of this vehicle and some examples of corresponding vehicles…..



    (Ps) By the way, this is the same Test Centre that “failed” another Mercedes of mine in the past for “not having a Full Beam” capability until I had to explain at length how it operates….(Mercedes 300SL-24 convertible!!!!)

  16. Alfonso
    July 12, 2010

    Peter, you deserve what you get for driving such fancy cars and expecting being treated fairly. Haven’t you learned anything?

    Sorry, couldn’t resist. But honestly, your problem seems to be with one individual mechanic, just book for a re-test, being a visual inspection you wouldn’t need to actually book or pay for it, right? Chances are you will get another mechanic. Sorted.

  17. Peter E O’Reilly
    July 13, 2010

    Well Tom, Please note that these “fancy cars” are 16+ years old.!!!..albeit in perfect nick.. The Irish Gov here would love me to “scrap” it and buy a nice new Japanese or Korean vehicle, with Low Emissions….low shelf life…low everything… BUT I WON’T !!!!!! and so I have to put up with the corrupt scheme of things here in Ireland…(for the moment )
    Anyway Tom, Thanks for advice.. Actually I’m going to ask for and insist on the the old “regular” long serving “Mechanic” there and see how he justifies this decision… In the meantime I’m awaiting responses from the NCT, AA, Dept of Transport for some or any reaction/comment… I’m not holding my breath as these people simply don’t give a damn…

    • Tom Doyle
      July 13, 2010

      Hi Peter – I didn’t say anything!!! I think it was Alfonso! :)

  18. Alfonso
    July 13, 2010

    Indeed it was ‘Alfonso’, that is me, and I was mostly pulling your leg. Although the advice was serious. Good luck with the re-test, though you shouldn’t need it. And definitely good luck with trying to make anyone give a damn about anything, I don’t see this changing!

  19. Peter O..
    July 13, 2010

    Apologies Tom…you are quite correct…It WAS that scoundrel Alfonso…

  20. Alfonso
    July 13, 2010

    Scoundrel! You’ve called me a scoundrel!

    Well, thanks!


  21. Oisín
    July 13, 2010

    “In the meantime I’m awaiting responses from the NCT, AA, Dept of Transport for some or any reaction/comment… I’m not holding my breath as these people simply don’t give a damn…”

    We do have what feels like an endemic problem of a serious lack of transparency and (more importantly) accountability which seems to plague state organisations.

    The NCT, the RSA (instructors refusing to give specific information or guidance to people after taking driving tests, even though it would obviously contribute to safer driving), local councils (in my case, being expected to pay the bin charges for the people who lived here before me), and even Eircom’s continuing monopoly on phone lines (still the highest line rental in Europe/the world AFAIK… and once I called to complain about them preventing me from getting DSL through UTV and was told that they __couldn’t even take my complaint__ because UTV had to make it).

    In two of the cases I alluded to, I had to go to consumer protection mechanisms to get things fixed because the state bodies involved (Eircom was still acting like one in 2003, with passive-aggressive biddies on the phone who were still in the P&T mentality).

    Would love to hear how you get on, Peter! I’ve taken a car through the NCT twice and both failed the first time, needing an expensive retest.
    I was very disturbed when the Micra recently failed due one of the rear wheels dragging (brake tightened too much), and after going to the mechanic to get it fixed, it passed but with an imbalance of 48% (50% is a fail). Also, within one week, I think the front brake readings had fluctuated significantly as well – odd.

  22. Peter O..
    July 13, 2010

    Hello All, I have discovered the following site after receiving a response from the Dept of Transport regarding my appeal… I am going to wait for a couple of more days to hear from the NCT folks…then proceed via the RSA…anc Oourts if necessary…
    Any and all advice is welcome in this thorny matter…
    Peter O…

    Here is the Link….

    Here is the DOT response…
    Thank you for contacting Customer Service.I wish to inform you that the Road Safety Authority are the agency responsible for Car Testing. I have tried to forward your complaint to their customer service mailbox but unfortunately it has been returned as undeliverable. This may be due to the size of the attachments. They can be contacted at the following link http://www.rsa.i.e. under vehicle testing /complaints procedure or info@ncts.i.e. or by phone RSA 1890 506 080/ direct 096 25000. or NCT 1890 412 413
    Customer Service

  23. Peter O..
    July 13, 2010

    Alfonso, Don’t be alarmed regarding the entitulature of Scoundrel… It was a responsive stab to your “Fancy Cars” Jibe…..
    For Legal &/or Litigatory reasons, I withdraw the comment here within the public forums of TomDoyleTalk…

  24. Alfonso
    July 13, 2010

    It was taken well and provoked no desire to litigate :P

  25. Peter O..
    July 13, 2010

    Back to Ye Olde NCT Issue…
    After not hearing, as expected, from the APPLUS folks at NCT Ireland… I contacted the Appeal Board of the NCT which, it seems, is a part of the AA & RSA in Ireland..
    I have now sent off all the Case History + Photos to an interested chap in the AA/RSA at KERRP@AAIRELAND.IE… I am expecting good results here..
    Will keep you all informed of the outcome..

  26. Arunas
    June 20, 2012

    Hello , I have test car before 3 weeks and after fix all car problems want do retest , but it is inpossible becouse for fool test have time , possible booking , for retest no time in all Ireland stations .
    Looks like NCTS do business very bad , really it is criminal .
    Can some help me in this problem ?

  27. Oisín
    June 23, 2012


    Hi, I had the same problem a month ago or so. After fixing the car, there was only 1 week left and no slots available anywhere in Dublin (the first slot was 1 day after the deadline).

    However, people do cancel their slots and if you check often you will eventually find a free slot.

    On a Monday, I wrote a computer program that checked for a free slot on the NCT webpage once every 2 minutes or so, then plays a sound when one is found. On Wednesday, the computer started beeping and I found a slot for Thursday :)

    It’s very frustrating, but I’m not sure if there’s an option, except maybe opening a case with the Ombudsman, since you could argue that you should not be penalised because the NCTS can’t handle the workload.
    Good luck!

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