The decision making process behind an airplane maintenance decision

Brian, the blogger behind Brian’s Flying Blog, recently had to make an extra outlay to have the Elevator Trim Actuator fixed on his Cessna 182. And while the problem itself was not particularly serious, it would eventually need attention and it would cost him something like US$1,500 to repair – not exactly a small maintenance outlay. Thus, it was important for Brian to have a clear and well thought out decision making process in order to make the best decision possible.

Hence, this is what he said he did:

    1. Start with A&P
    2. Read Service Manual and Parts Manual
    3. Check with Cessna Pilots Association or Mike Busch from Savvy Owner Seminars
    4. Check with A&P again
    5. Try to find parts (new or used etc.) or documentation myself
    6. Discuss and work with A&P to finish the repair (help where possible)

Brian goes into further detail in his post about each of the steps he took and he concludes that in the end, he saved quite a bit of money with the decision he made and he ended up coming up with what he thought was the best solution to the problem. Brian also mentions that while it did take a bit of time to reach a final decision, he now has a better understanding of both his plane and what it costs to maintain it – something that every plane owner needs to have.

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