4 Practices That May Be Reducing the Lifespan of Your Aircraft
Aircraft are considerable investments that require a lot of attention and maintenance. It’s important to remember that the type of care you give your aircraft will depend on the type of care you want it to give you back.
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Practices That Diminish An Aircraft’s Lifespan
If you’re a frequent flier, there’s a good chance that you’re doing things on a regular basis that could be reducing the lifespan of your plane. Read on to know what you might be doing that’s impacting your aircraft’s lifespan.
Excessive Engine Cycles
Aircraft engines are typically four-stroke engines with four separate stages: intake, compression, power, and exhaust. When an aircraft engine runs for too long without being given sufficient time to cool down, it can overheat and, subsequently, fail entirely.
The good news is that most modern aircraft have built-in safeguards to prevent this from happening. You will be promptly alerted when your plane’s oil temperature gets dangerously high or low (usually around +5 degrees Celsius).
Overuse of Reverse Thrust
Use reverse thrust as little as possible. While it will increase the distance traveled per unit of time by slowing down the plane, it also puts unnecessary stress on the engines and other components of an airplane (especially older aircraft).
This can lead to mechanical failure or unexpected maintenance costs in the long run. Reverse thrust should only be employed when absolutely necessary, such as when attempting an emergency landing or flying at extremely low speeds.
RELATED: To learn more about thrust in airplanes, we’ve discussed this at length in our previous blog: Why Planes Fly Differently in Cold Weather
Poor Maintenance Practices
If your aircraft is not properly serviced or maintained by qualified personnel, it will likely have issues with its structure. In turn, structural damage can lead to engine failure, oxygen system damage, and hydraulic system issues.
Failing to perform regular maintenance, such as oil changes, inspections, and repairs leads to increased wear and tear on the aircraft, which can shorten an aircraft’s lifespan. Not to mention, a poorly maintained engine may be more prone to failure than one that’s regularly checked out by a professional mechanic. Have your aircraft inspected every six months or so to keep it in pristine condition.
Using Expired Parts
Another practice that could reduce the lifespan of an aircraft is using substandard or expired parts. Substandard parts either don’t meet the original manufacturer’s standards or have been reworked to make them appear as though they do.
This is especially problematic if the aircraft is being built in a factory where other planes are being made, as it becomes difficult to tell whether a part has been previously used in another plane.
Expired parts are those that were not meant to be used for long periods of time or under extreme conditions, such as high heat. The most common example of this would be rubber tires on an airplane, which are typically only meant to last for several landings before needing replacement.
Only work with professional and licensed suppliers to ensure that you’re being provided with the best possible parts for your aircraft.
Now that you’re better informed about the common practices that reduce the lifespan of an aircraft, you can take the proper measures to avoid them. Remember that in aviation, being proactive is extremely important in all aspects of aircraft maintenance. After all, prevention is better than cure.
Don’t risk your or your aircraft’s safety using a broken exhaust system. Contact Knisley Welding Aircraft Exhaust System at email@example.com or call us at (800) 522-6990 (toll-free).