General Aviation Frequently Asked Questions


As a pilot, what maintenance can I do on an aircraft?

 Before you can start work on an aircraft, civil aviation rules require you to:

  • Hold a current pilots licence with an appropriate rating for the aircraft.
  • Be appropriately trained. This can be achieved by a declaration signed by an appropriately type-rated LAME stating that you have received instruction in how to perform the particular maintenance task.
  • Be authorised by the aircraft owner.

Appendix A of Part 43 gives an extensive list of the maintenance tasks that may be performed by a pilot. Some tasks are precluded if special tools or equipment are required.

Rule 43.101 allows a pilot to make a written declaration certifying an aircraft for release to service in the appropriate maintenance records after performing the authorised pilot maintenance. Rule 43.69 requires full details of the maintenance task performed to be entered in the logbook first. Rule 43.105 covers the details required to be recorded in, which includes the release-to-service statement.

What aircraft maintenance inspections are required to get my aircraft airworthy?

The required scheduled aircraft maintenance inspections are covered in rule 91.605. These are:

  • Annual and 100-hour inspection (rule 91.607) - every 12 months or 100 hours time in service, whichever occurs first.
  • Radio station (rule 91.609) - within every 24-month period.
  • Altimeter system and altitude reporting equipment (rule 91.611) - within every 24-month period
  • following disturbance of the static pressure system, except where this is limited to system drains and self-sealing couplings
  • where maintenance on the automatic pressure altitude reporting system may cause data errors
  • SSR transponder (rule 91.613) - within every 24-month period.
  • Emergency locator transmitter - within every 12-month period.
  • Annual Review of Airworthiness - within every 12-month period.

While undergoing scheduled maintenance, the aircraft also needs to be checked by a LAME to ensure that all applicable airworthiness directives have been complied with.

How do I get authorisation to fly my aircraft to a maintenance engineer when it is overdue a scheduled maintenance inspection?

Provided that the inspection period has not lapsed more than 10% past the scheduled date or hours, a delivery flight can be made for the purpose of locating the aircraft at a maintenance facility.

The extension needs to be approved by recording it in the maintenance record. This can be done on the aircraft Technical Log by the aircraft owner. The statement should be worded along the lines of 10% extension provision as allowed by rule 91.605 applied to (named) inspection. Inspection now required prior to (date or hours as applicable). 
Note that no 10% extension is provided for the Annual Review of Airworthiness (ARA) inspection.

If the maintenance inspection falls outside the 10% provision, or the ARA has not been completed, then a Special Flight Permit will need to be obtained from the CAA to authorise the aircraft to fly to the Maintenance Providers location.

Complete a copy of form CAA 24021/07 [PDF 36 Kb] or CAA 24021/07 (Word) and fax it to the Manager of the Aircraft Certification Unit (ACU), Fax: 0 -4-569 2024.

Allow up to 48 hours for the form to be processed. More urgent cases will be considered after consultation with Manager ACU, Tel: 0-4-560 9400.

One of the conditions of a Special Flight Permit is that the aircraft is first inspected by an LAME and issued with a Certificate of Fitness for Flight. The LAME needs to inspect the aircraft before it flies.

When does an aircraft need weighing?

An aircraft should be reweighed whenever there is a condition that alters the aircrafts empty weight or centre of gravity position from that recorded on the Form CAA 2102, and the change is unable to be determined by calculation.

Examples include: following modification involving adding, removing or repositioning items; following aircraft painting; following a repair; when weight and balance records are incomplete or missing; or when requested by the CAA.

Maintenance Outside New Zealand

See the pdf below:

Maintenance of ZK-registered aircraft operating outside New Zealand (PDF)