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Do I follow the 100 hr. or Annual Inspection time table?

Roger Lee

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Hi All,


Many have ask and many more are confused about the time tables for inspections. Do you follow the 100 hr. time table set by the engine and aircraft Mfg or do I follow the FAA and Mfg Annual condition Inspection time table?

The simple answer is both and neither. You may say not so fast here pal, but here is the straight scoop from all authoritative entities.

First the FAA doesn't care how often the Annual is reset so long as it is addressed and done. FD and Rotax have both 100 hr. and Annual inspections. They don't care so long as they are done and addressed and both the annual and the 100 can be done at any time and the time table for each can be reset.

So what does this mean for me and you? If you only fly 50 hours a year then you will be doing the Annual Condition Inspection most of the time. An example is: you have 50 hours on the plane in one year and the Annual is due. So the Annual and 100 hr inspection is the same. You do the Annual and sign off in the log that both have been addressed. Your next Annual is 12 months from then and the next 100 hr. is at 150 hrs. If the Annual comes around again at let's say 110 hrs then you will do the annual and also address the 100 hr inspection. Now the Annual is again in 12 months and the 100 hr. is due at 210 hrs. and so on. So if you are a low time pilot (less than 100 hrs a year) then you will do more Annual condition time table inspections.


What if you are a 100+ hr a year pilot. Let's say you fly 175 hrs or 225 hrs a a year. Then you will be doing more 100 hr time table inspections and addressing and resetting the Annual time table. So lets say your first year you put on 100 hrs. before the annual was due. Now you do the 100 hr. inspection and reset the Annual which then would come due in 12 months from that date. Now you put on another 100 hr. before the annual is due again. You will do the 100 hr. inspection and reset the annual again for 12 months down the line.



This type of schedule give pilots some flexibility for inspection times. You must make sure you write in the logbook that you have done both or you may be doing two inspections separate from each other.




I know it is clear as mud, but that's it in a nut shell.

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OK Roger, we have a 100 hr inspection due on our next oil change in about a week and we have an annual due in October. Explain it to me in simple terms. We can't delay the oil change but do we need to do the 100 when we do the oil change or can we wait untill Oct.

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Hi Arnold,


You are required to do the 100 hr.

If your 100 hr is due then you have to do it, but include the annual. It's the same inspection, just document you are doing both. So by resetting the annual it won't be due again until next Aug. or your next 100 hr. You won't have to doing anything in Oct.

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As has been said many times, it depends on the manufacturer and what is said in the manual. My plane has an annual condition inspection OR 100 hr inspection depending on the use. The 100 hr is required if the plane is used for commercial operations otherwise just an annual regardless of the number of hours flown per year. The annual and 100 hr inspection are identical. I do have 'recommended' 25 hr inspections that, thankfully, can be performed by the owner, though. Pretty much an extremely thorough preflight that takes about an hour.


This, of course, does not apply to the Rotax.

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I realize that I am a "Johnny-come-lately" to this discussion, but I thought I would join in anyway. Legally speaking, the answer to the question of which Condition Inspection interval to follow is ALWAYS found in the relevant operating rule. In the case of SLSA, this rule is 14 CFR part 91.327. Anyone can read it as easily as I can so I won't try to cut and paste it into this reply. The requirements for when to have a Condition Inspection performed will also be echoed in the aircraft Operating Limitations which are a part of the airworthiness certificate for the aircraft.


First of all, a "Condition Inspection" is a legal term for a specific type of AIRCRAFT inspection, used to determine whether or not the aircraft is in a condition for safe operation. Regardless of the interval on which it is performed, annual calendar year, or some other interval, it is the same scope and detail and does not require a different sign-off in the maintenance records. The required content for the sign-off of a Condition Inspection is found in the Operating Limitations attached to the airworthiness certificate for your aircraft. The owner must ensure that the maintenance person who performs the inspection includes this required sign-off in the maintenance entry for the Condition Inspection.


In accordance with 14 CFR part 91.327 (and Ops Limitations) everybody (SLSA world) must have Condition Inspections performed on an annual calendar year interval regardless of hours flown (can be in excess of 100 hrs.). Additionally, if the aircraft is operated for hire, condition inspections are also due at-or-before each 100 hrs. time-in-service.

The Operating Limitations also require in-conjunction-with the Condition Inspection, an inspection to ensure that all required placards and instrument markings are in place, and a corresponding maintenance record entry to that effect.


When to perform a SLSA (doesn't matter what model aircraft) Condition Inspection is ALWAYS governed by FAR.

If you don't fly for hire, have Condition Inspections done annually (each calendar year).

If you fly for hire, have them done every 100 hrs. TIS, or annually (which ever comes first). The interval will reset either way.

Any required inspection can be done earily and the interval will reset as well.

The Condition Inspection interval can also be reset if the aircraft receives an inspection for the issuance of an airworthiness certificate (usually new aircraft).


While not part of this discussion on WHEN to perform Condition Inspections, it is well to note, that the owner must ensure that a required Condition Inspection is performed in accordance with the AIRCRAFT manufacturer's maintenance and inspection procedures, starting with their (manufacturer's) inspection checklist.

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