As you’re soaring through the sky on a flight, the last thing you want to experience is aircraft failure. Keeping yourself and your passengers safe is the ultimate goal of flying – that’s why regular aircraft maintenance is important, and the practice should certainly never be underestimated.
So buckle up! Let’s take a look at why aircraft maintenance is so important and how to approach keeping your plane in top-notch health so you never have to stay grounded.
What is Aircraft Maintenance?
Aircraft maintenance is the process by which a professional conducts regular check-ups on both commercial and civil airplanes to ensure that they are safe for flight. Because of the complicated mechanical makeup of an airplane, even the slightest failure, be it a loose electrical connection in the cockpit, a misfiring engine piston or your fuel tank is contaminated, can cause serious harm to you and your passengers.
The first step in ensuring your plane is kept up-to-par with regulations set forth by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) or other airworthiness authority is to conduct routine checks.
What is an Aircraft Maintenance Check?
Aircraft maintenance checks are required inspections that take place at specific intervals throughout a commercial or private aircraft’s lifespan. There are several different requirements that will determine the type of inspection you receive for your aircraft. Many private plane owners can have their required checks done by their aircraft maintenance shop.
The authorities that conduct the inspection refer to this process as a “check”. The most common ones include A check, B check, C check and D check. A and B checks are considered lighter checks, while C and D are on the heavier side.
For instance, an A check needs to be performed approximately every 400-600 flight hours or 200-300 cycles (take-offs and landings). In comparison, a D check takes place every 6-10 years, requiring a whole crew to take the entire airplane apart for a thorough inspection and overhaul.
The majority of aircraft owners, including those who work for hire, need to have their plane inspected annually, which is also known as the “annual inspection”. Additionally, aircrafts that are brand new are required to be inspected before passengers can board.
What is Airworthiness?
Airworthiness measures how suitable an aircraft is for safe flight. The state of aircraft registry national aviation authority issues airworthiness certifications, and continues to re-issue the certification as long as required maintenance actions are performed on your plane.
If you’re an aircraft owner and your particular model of plane, engine, avionics or other system is known to have a safety deficiency, you’ll receive an airworthiness directive (AD) to inform you that the plane is grounded until it is fixed.
Now that we know a little background about proper checks and airworthiness, let’s explore why regular aircraft maintenance is so crucial to your success as a pilot.
Importance of Aircraft Maintenance
If you want to keep your plane flying strong, aircraft maintenance is essential. This isn’t just for commercial airliners flying 747s, either. Small, private aircraft owners have the same duty to ensure they’re keeping themselves and everyone else safe by regularly getting it serviced by a mechanic. This way, you’re in compliance with the rules of aircraft ownership.
The first and most obvious reason that regular aircraft maintenance is important is that it makes your plane more likely to pass its checks and continue to be airworthy. You can save a lot of time, energy and money in the future by taking good care of your plane throughout the year. It even helps to extend the lifespan of the aircraft, keeping it healthy for years to come.
Second, regular maintenance is key to ensuring the aircraft will fly perfectly every time you take-off. The last thing you want when you’re up in the air is a malfunction in mechanical, electrical or gas components. This ties into the next reason aircraft maintenance is important: ensuring passenger safety.
When you’re trusted to fly people from point-A to point-B, many things can happen to the aircraft that are out of your control – fortunately, accidents can be prevented with regular aircraft maintenance. Your main concern should be that your passengers arrive at their destination in the same condition they left.
The final reason you should conduct regular maintenance on your aircraft is that it’s your duty as a pilot to always fly safely and professionally. With high-profile airplane accidents hitting the news in recent years, it casts a negative aura on the entire industry. Keeping your plane maintained gives you the best chance possible to always reach your destination without issue. After all – wouldn’t you rather enjoy your time in the air, rather than worry about malfunctions?
Are you searching for a better aircraft maintenance technician?
Contact Citadel Aircraft Maintenance Today! Our team includes the best plane mechanics in the greater Minneapolis-St. Paul area – we’re ready to help you keep your plane in tip-top shape so you never have to miss a day of flying. From annual inspections to troubleshooting, repairs and more, we have the capacity to meet your unique aircraft maintenance needs.
The experience we offer gives pilots confidence in their aircraft and sets future expectations for a higher level of service. At Citadel Aircraft Maintenance, we will always treat our clients’ planes like our own.
Get in touch with our team for a free quote on your aircraft’s maintenance needs.