“How Qualified Are Airline Mechanics?”

You board the flight and take your designated seat, and in some time the pilot announces that they are ready to take off, but have you ever wondered how the airplanes are kept in top working condition enabling you to fly safely from point a to point b?

Well, it is all possible, thanks to the airplane mechanics who work their best to keep you safe high up in the air. Sometimes you may come across situations where you need to wait for hours in the terminal due to a problem in the engine, and although the long wait can be frustrating, it is crucial that the engines and other related parts of the aircraft are in top working condition for you to have a safe flight. Airplane mechanics service and repair aircraft engines, this is done in order to provide dependable performance.

For ensuring the safety of the aircraft passenger, the Federal Aviation Administration requires aircraft mechanics to make routine inspections of the airplane. They inspect the engines, landing gear and other important features of the plane. They may also replace fluids or grease moving parts. They make use of special equipment to check for cracks not visible to the naked human eye. If any such cracks are found, the mechanic will fix it or install a new section in order to deliver best performance. Aircraft mechanics may work on one or many types of airplanes, some may specialize in a specific type of the aircraft as well.

However not anyone can become an aircraft mechanic. An individual needs to have the proper experience and qualifications in order to work as an airplane mechanic. In this article we shall give you a brief look at the basic credentials of an aircraft mechanic so that you do not get the jitters the next time you fly and know that your safety is ensured by highly qualified professionals.


Here below are some basic requirements that must be met in order to get a mechanic’s certificate.

    * For a U.S. citizen, an individual must be at least 18 years of age. Must be able to read, write and understand English. Must either be a graduate from an FAA- Approved Aviation Maintenance Technician School or have 18 months of practical experience with airframes or power plants, or 30 months practical experience working on both simultaneously. The applicant must pass three tests, written, oral and practical.

    * If not a U.S. citizen, the candidate must meet all requirements above and in addition must produce a mechanic certificate to maintain U.S. registered civil aircraft. Also, passport must be shown; a detailed statement must be presented from former employee stating the specific types of maintenance performed and for how long. Also a letter must be provided from the foreign airworthiness authority of the country, or maybe from an advisor of the International Civil Aviation Organization. All documents must be signed and dated originals.

An aircraft mechanic can get the required experience to become a certified power plant or airframe mechanic in one of the following ways.

    * By attending 170 FAR part 147 Aviation Maintenance Technician Schools. These schools established throughout the world offer all the necessary training required for a mechanic’s certificate. Many schools also offer avionics courses for interested applicants. To get into these schools, hopeful applicants must have a high school diploma or a GED i.e. General Education Diploma. Schooling may last from 12 to 24 months. After graduation, applicants may sit for FAA exams.

    * Individuals may also join the armed services and gain adequate training and experience in the field of aircraft maintenance. An official letter from military employer must be presented to provide proof of work done and experience gained.

    * Individuals may also work an FAA Repair Station or FBO under the supervision of a certified mechanic, either 18 months for each certificate or 30 moths for both. Experience is documented with payment receipts. A log book must be signed by the supervisor and a notarized statement must be provided from their former employee along with proof of work.

Apart from the experience, the individual must also prepare for the FAA tests. FAA would only give credit to a hopeful candidate if they have proper experience, fare well in the tests and show potential in the interview.

A lot of care is taken while selecting airplane mechanics and only the best and the worthy are chosen for the crucial posts. So, the next time you get on the plane, know that dedicated and skilled professional are working round the clock to ensure you get to your destination fast and safe. Have a happy trip!

All material provided on this website is provided for informational or education purposes only. No content is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Consult your physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition. The author is not a pilot, therapist, psychologist, physician, or other mental health or medical professional. Customer names or locations may have been changed to preserve anonymity. Your individual results may vary and are influenced by many factors.