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Post-maintenance test flights.

As we noted in our December 2008 issue, "...the FAA has a regulation covering post-maintenance test flights. FAR 91.407. Its applicability to a specific situation hinges on the extent to which, if any, work on the aircraft 'appreciably changed its flight characteristics or substantially affected its operation.' That's a fairly broad definition, and one an owner should think about whenever some maintenance is planned.

"But that's not all. Areas requiring consideration and planning for a post-maintenance test flight include piloting currency, insurance coverage, crew coordination and other FAA regulations, to name a few. For example, another regulation, FAR 91.305, states flight testing must be conducted over open water, or sparsely populated areas having light air traffic."

Experience has shown that if there's a likely occasion for a maintenance-related problem, it's on the first flight after maintenance was performed. That's just the way it is. Don't stack the deck against you by accepting a less-than-optimal situation.

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Publication:Aviation Safety
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2014
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