Your King Air Doesn’t Need “Annual Inspections”—Here’s Why

Beechcraft King Air

Most aircraft are required to receive annual inspections under 14 CFR § 91.409, which states that inspections are due within 12 calendar months of the last inspection. Whether you’re a corporate pilot, fellow MRO or somewhere in between, this is a schedule you’re likely very familiar with.

But not all aircraft require an annual inspection, and King Air is one of them.

Federal Regulations Explained

The mandate for annual inspections can be found in section (a)(1) of § 91.409. It essentially states that no one may operate an aircraft unless their aircraft has received an annual inspection or an inspection for the issuance of an airworthiness certificate.

Diving deeper into the legislation, we find section (f)(3) of § 91.409 which states that the annual inspection schedule may be waived in lieu of a manufacturer recommended schedule.

King Air Manufacturer Recommended Inspections

King Airs have special inspection items due at different calendar intervals—12, 24, 30, 36 months. Having certain inspection items due every 12 months is not the same as a typical annual inspection required for a piston-powered aircraft.

Aircraft users who are considered “high use” are those who have more than 200 flight hours in a 24 month period, or those who are spending over 8.5 flight hours per month on average. Those users are required to have a King Air inspection every 200 hours.

Where an aircraft user can deviate from this King Air Phase Inspection plan is when they are technically a “light user” (less than 8.5 flight hours on average per month) but choose to have their aircraft inspected more often. Especially when an aircraft isn’t flown frequently, people want peace of mind that their aircraft is still in top shape. Those who have that preference can choose an Alternate Phase Inspection Program. If a King Air stays around 8.5 flight hours per month or less, it should qualify for this program. Essentially, this path ensures the aircraft completes two phases of inspections every year, rounding out all four phases in 24 months. It’s important to remember that it is still not the same as a typical piston aircraft annual inspection, as each phase of a King Air inspection has different items on its checklist.

Other King Air Maintenance To Look For

Outside of the King Air phased inspections, there are other maintenance items to consider. Some maintenance items are triggered by hours of use, while others are triggered by calendar time. A trustworthy mechanic who is knowledgeable about King Air maintenance and inspection schedules is crucial in establishing the right schedule for your aircraft.

A few examples of other Special Inspection King Air maintenance items to look for are:

  • Hydrostatic test on the oxygen bottle. This is triggered at 36 months or 60 months depending on model
  • Instrument air filter. This replacement is triggered at 600 or 800 flight hours, depending on the aircraft. Could be less depending on specific flight activity, such as flying over fires.
  • Starter generator overhaul. This is triggered at 1000 hours flight hours.
  • Flap flex shaft replacement. This is triggered at 5000 cycles.

Winner Aviation Is Ready To Service Your King Air

At Winner Aviation, we are experts in the nuances of King Air inspection and maintenance schedules and can hone in on the right cadence for your aircraft. If you’re interested in learning more about the maintenance that will be due and how much to budget for your specific aircraft, Winner Aviation is here to help. We will go through your airframe, engine, and propeller inspection schedules and help you plan out when and how to combine inspections for the next 10 years so you know what to expect.

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