The two things that can destroy your aircraft are misuse and negligence. As an owner, it is your sole responsibility to take care of your aircraft’s airworthiness. Airworthiness is usually referred to as the ability of the aircraft or its components to keep its design type and have a safe air operation.

You have worked hard to get your own light aircraft but know that the real hard work may have yet started. To keep your aircraft flying, you need to keep maintaining it. Maintenance, inspection, and flight safety all depend on your efficiency in this regard. an aircraft owner, it is your responsibility to

Have an updated legal certificate of aircraft’s airworthiness and aircraft registration.
Know regulations concerning the operations and maintenance of the aircraft.
Have an FAA or other aviation institutions’ approved flight manual.

Aircraft Maintenance

Aviation maintenance involves; inspection, overhaul, repair, upkeep, and preservation of the aircraft and engine, including replacement of parts and other accessories.

According to the federal aviation authority, an aircraft needs minor maintenance every 100 hours of slight and slight preventive maintenance every 25 hours of airtime.

If you have a pilot certificate, you are eligible to perform preventive maintenance. If you are confident that you can do the job, then remember to log the following for record and evidence purposes; otherwise using professional aviation maintenance and repair services is always a better option.

Note the description of the work performed or references of data.
A signature, certificate, or record card is held by the person performing the job.
Completion date.

According to the FAA ‘maintenance aspects of owning an aircraft’ document, some of the preventive maintenance activities that an authoritative aircraft owner can perform are

Remove, install, and repair landing gear tires.
Replace cotter keys or defective safety wire
Service landing gear shock struts (change oil, fill the air, or both).
Service landing gear wheel bearing (cleaning and greasing)
Lubricate items that don’t require any structural removal other than nuts and bolts or some non-structural items.
Replenish hydraulic fluid.

Aircraft Inspections

The regulators advise an annual and a 100 flight hour inspection for aircraft.

The annual inspection should be carried out within the 12-month calendar by a certified aviation inspector with the inspection authority from the aircraft’s manufacturer.

Similarly, if the aircraft is used to carry passengers or is used in-flight classes, it should be inspected after the completion of a 100-hour operation. It should be done by an airframe and powerplant mechanic, holding a permission certificate from the aircraft manufacturer. (a 100-hour inspection certificate).

An annual inspection can replace a 100-hour inspection, but a 100-hour inspection can not be counted as an annual inspection.

As an aircraft owner or pilot, it is your responsibility to perform pre-flight and post-flight aircraft health inspections.

Other Maintenance Preferences

Airworthiness Directives

Other maintenance and preventive actions from an aircraft owner may include airworthiness directives or simply known as AD notes. These notes are issued by the FAA mentioning the aircraft models and components that are unsafe for flight operations. Keeping yourself updated about these aircraft and deemed unsafe components is important to avoid any legal action against you for not complying with the regulations.

Service Bulletins

Just like any software or technology updates, aircraft manufacturers may -from time to time- roll out materials in the market that update the aircraft owners about the features and measures that can enhance the safety, performance, and condition of the aircraft. These helping materials also contain information and solutions for the most common aircraft problems.

No matter how well you maintain and take care of your aircraft, you cannot go above the force of nature. Aircraft corrosion can still occur due to endogenous factors such as environmental conditions up in the air or on the land, the climate you are located in, the area where you park it, how it is cleaned, and sometimes just because the aircraft is giving up due to aging.

However, regular inspections, repair, and maintenance are the lifeblood of your aircraft, whether you use it personally or for business use. Don’t procrastinate or miss it and make sure to log on to every record and activity just like you do for your business, corporation, or the job that earns you a living.


Making yourself able to own a light aircraft usually takes a lot of hard work, time, and patience. You can be a proud owner of the aircraft, but to stay in the position for a long time, you need to be a vigilant one. Proper maintenance, repairs, and inspections are inevitable for an aircraft if you wish to see it in proper working condition and have adequate airworthiness, at least through its expected life. Therefore, always make sure to keep all the required permissions, inspection, and maintenance certificates on hand to avoid any legal problems.

Author's Bio: 

Owning an aircraft takes a lot of effort, care, and hard work. The article provides tips for some basic and simple maintenance routines for light aircraft.