Aircraft Components Return Conditions – Lease Review

Aircraft Components Return Conditions – Lease Review

When considering an aircraft lease return the components themselves are a very important consideration and can be complex due to how components are categorised.

The conditions of their return status will depend on the component type, such as condition being “like for like or better” or remaining life before maintenance is required.

This is to avoid a situation where an aircraft handed back, and the very next flight 100 components all need to be replaced because they were Hard Time components and only had 1 FC (flight cycle) remaining before maintenance actions were required. This is a good example of how a lease maintains asset value Vs the aircraft meeting airworthiness requirements.

Regarding Hard Time components, as an example, common conditions for HT component return might include a minimum remaining life such as 6000FH, 3000 FC or 18 months.

This is not as simple as it might sound; the (AMP) Aircraft Maintenance Plan (a national authority agreed work instruction to maintain airworthiness for a given aircraft) and the (MPD) Maintenance Planning Data (typically the manufacturer recommendations for maintaining aircraft to maintain airworthiness) may not match. It is not uncommon for an operator to alter maintenance intervals for some tasks based on their operation and experience.

You should note in the lease agreement what the reference document is regarding return conditions – typically this is MPD intervals and thresholds.

Depending on the component you need to review compliance to the return condition and it must be compared to the components reason for the interval / threshold in the maintenance data. What this means is we are interested in why the component needs to be removed such as for overhaul.

This is very important – it means you need to know when the component was last overhauled and not when the component was installed on the aircraft.

When you look at the certification of the component you need to work out the remaining life of the item Versus the contracted requirements. For example, a HT component with intervals set at 6000 FC having done 500 FC has remaining life of 5500 FC and meets a lease return condition of 3000 FC

You can appreciate from a consideration of just one component type that the task can become complex with regards to the record review.

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