The FAA defines a maintenance program as “the performance of tasks required to ensure the continuing airworthiness of an aircraft, including any one or combination of overhaul, inspection, replacement, defect rectification, and the embodiment of an alteration or repair.”
So each of these items must be addressed by all aircraft owners and operators.
Maintenance is part of ownership and one of the biggest factors to consider when buying or even selling an aircraft. This is especially true in the pre-owned sector – which is why Jetcraft recommends that all customers take advantage of a maintenance program to service their investment.
Proper maintenance tracking and planning is the key to operating an aircraft safely and efficiently. Maintenance programs take one of the most important and time-consuming elements of private ownership out of the hands of the operator and into the care of a trusted expert. These service providers keep track of inspections, component replacements and new FAA regulations which must be addressed by all operators. Maintenance programs also allow owners to predict maintenance costs with certainty. Users do not need to worry about suddenly getting hit with a huge bill all at once.
Of course, there are different levels of maintenance programs, most of which are based on a term subscription model. But all will help take the worry out of private ownership and ensure peace of mind. A 2013 survey by Corporate Jet Investor indicates that 96% of aircraft brokers recommend a maintenance program to their customers.
“Aircraft that are on a maintenance program enjoy better levels of safety and compliance,” says Roy Giocanda, General Manager, Customer Support with CAMP Systems International. “In addition, owners are able to receive status updates on what inspections and services are coming due, so it takes much of the worry and guess work out of the owner’s hands.”
But safety and peace of mind are not the only factors to consider when selecting a plan. The fact is, properly maintained aircraft earn a huge boost in resale value.
“A solid maintenance program – especially for the engine – can impact the value of an aircraft by up to 3 and 4 million dollars,” said Scott Ritchie, Vice President of Sales for Jetcraft.
Convenience is another reason to purchase a maintenance plan. Most service providers will be able to service your aircraft at repair stations throughout the world. So your aircraft will be maintained wherever you are located.
What are some things you should look for when purchasing a maintenance program? Ritchie advises clients to purchase a plan that suits their needs. If a client is only flying 200 hours a year, then their needs will be much less extensive than someone flying 1,000 hours a year. Most importantly, he says, know what you’re signing up for. Review the contract from inception to term – including termination provisions which can add on unexpected costs.
The advantages of maintenance programs are well worth the costs in terms of safety, regulatory compliance, resale value and peace of mind. Let the experts worry about the maintenance while you just enjoy your journey!
If you are interested in speaking with Scott Ritchie about the importance of aircraft programs and how to choose the right aircraft for purchase, he can be reached at +1 314 409 4791 or [email protected]