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Can You Pass This Preflight Walkaround?

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Every flight should start with a good preflight. And yours starts...now.


  1. 1) You're checking out the maintenance logbook, and you see that the last annual was done on February 2nd, 2016. Today is February 10th, 2017. Can you fly?
    Boldmethod

    According to FAR 91.409, an annual inspection needs to occur within the preceding 12 calendar months from the date it was last performed. This means that you can fly the plane all the way up to February 28th, 2017 before it needs an annual.

    According to FAR 91.409, an annual inspection needs to occur within the preceding 12 calendar months from the date it was last performed. This means that you can fly the plane all the way up to February 28th, 2017 before it needs an annual.

    1. yes
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    2. no
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  2. 2) You're walking around the airplane and you see this. What is it?
    Bin im Garten

    This is the static port for your pitot-static system.

    This is the static port for your pitot-static system.

    1. 2-1
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    3. 2-3
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    1. 2-4
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  3. 3) You check your oil, and it's just under the low mark on the dipstick. Assuming you're a private pilot, can you top if off yourself, or do you need a mechanic to fill it for you?
    Boldmethod

    According to FAR par 43, (c) Preventive maintenance (6) "Lubrication not requiring disassembly other than removal of nonstructural items such as cover plates, cowlings, and fairings." is allowed by licensed pilots. 

    According to FAR par 43, (c) Preventive maintenance (6) "Lubrication not requiring disassembly other than removal of nonstructural items such as cover plates, cowlings, and fairings." is allowed by licensed pilots. 

    1. 3-1
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  4. 4) If you take a fuel sample and there's water in it, where will it be in your strainer?

    If you have water contamination, it will sink to the bottom of your fuel strainer, because water is heavier than avgas.

    If you have water contamination, it will sink to the bottom of your fuel strainer, because water is heavier than avgas.

    1. 4-1
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    2. 4-2
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  5. 5) You check your aircraft lights, and your green nav light is burned out. Can you fly during the day (VFR) with it inoperative?
    Capwatts86

    According to 91.205 (c) (2), approved position lights (nav lights) are required for night flight, but not for day. As long as you make the lights inoperative per 91.213 (or an MEL, if that's what you have), you're good to go.

    According to 91.205 (c) (2), approved position lights (nav lights) are required for night flight, but not for day. As long as you make the lights inoperative per 91.213 (or an MEL, if that's what you have), you're good to go.

    1. 5-1
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  6. 6) Finally, you hop back in the cockpit and get ready to start running your before-start checklists, when you notice that your clock isn't working (this preflight isn't going very well). Can you fly during the day (VFR) with it inoperative?
    flightlog

    According to 91.205 (b), you don't need a clock for daytime VFR flight. So as long as you make in inoperative per FAR 91.213, or MEL it if you have a minimum equipment list, you're good to do.

    According to 91.205 (b), you don't need a clock for daytime VFR flight. So as long as you make in inoperative per FAR 91.213, or MEL it if you have a minimum equipment list, you're good to do.

    1. 6-1
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Well, those were some tough preflight questions.

You scored %. Better luck next time.

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Solid work, you've got most of this preflight down.

You scored %. Nice work.

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Nailed it!

You scored %. Well done.

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Whether you're starting your airline career or looking to make the move from another job, check out what ExpressJet has to offer here.

And when you're within 6 months of earning your flight time, apply to ExpressJet and get ready for the right seat of a jet.

Colin Cutler

Colin is a Boldmethod co-founder, pilot and graphic artist. He's been a flight instructor at the University of North Dakota, an airline pilot on the CRJ-200, and has directed development of numerous commercial and military training systems. You can reach him at colin@boldmethod.com.

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