Tips and Tricks for Aircraft Engine Oil Changes

Unlike car drivers, pilots don’t wait for the change oil light to pop up on the dashboard before they change the engine oil. On average, aircraft oil is changed after every 10 hours of flight time. When the time comes, there are a few key steps that should be followed so as not to cause damage to the engine.

First and foremost, the maximum and minimum levels of the oil tank should be identified. When you fill up any type of vestibule, you want to make sure you don’t overfill the tank and cause a leak. On the other hand, you should make sure to fill the tank pass the minimum level to ensure that the system has enough oil in it to not cause internal damage to the system through system overheat or friction.

The location and timing of the oil change are important factors to consider. Prior to performing the oil change, you should monitor the oil levels over an extended time. In doing so, you can accurately gauge the oil levels and detect any abnormalities such as a leak. When you decide to carry out the oil change, the aircraft should be parked on a stable, even surface. If the aircraft is parked on a downward or upward slope, the oil level in the tank will be difficult to gauge and may lead you to mistakenly overfill or underfill the tank.

Although it may seem tempting to complete the maintenance as quickly as possible, it is important to wait 15-30 minutes after engine shut down before opening up the fuel tank. Not only is this a safety precaution, but it is also an accuracy measure. Hot oil has a larger volume than cold oil; therefore, it may trick you to believe the engine oil tank is fuller than it actually is. Again, this often leads to incorrect measuring and potential problems down the road (or tarmac in this case).

As is the principle for most maintenance procedures, consistency is key. Just as you can choose whether to fill up your car tank completely, halfway, or by the dollar amount at the gas station, you can choose how much oil to pour into your aircraft. If possible, you should try to refill the tank to the same amount each time. This simply helps to maintain accuracy and keep an eye out for any oil inconsistencies.

The final element to consider when changing your oil is the type of oil you plan on using. Manufacturers usually specify the type of oil that they use in the factory. While it is advised to use this oil, it is possible to find an alternative. Prior research should be carried out to determine whether different oils can be mixed or not. In certain cases, you may need to drain the original oil before adding the new oil. Engine oil filling devices such as funnels or fluid servicing carts are advisable so to avoid messy and possibly expensive spillages.

At ASAP Buying, owned and operated by ASAP Semiconductor, we can help you find all the engine oil changing devices you need for the civil aviation, and defense industries. We’re always available and ready to help you find all the parts and equipment you need, 24/7-365. For a quick and competitive quote, email us at  or call us at +1-714-705-4780.


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