Aircraft Propeller Life


(Ontario, Canada)

Does the life of an aircraft component start on the date of manufacture or the date of installation, or the date the part was put into service? My concern is a propeller.


ANSWER: It depends on what is limiting the life of the component. Hours, cycles, or calendar time.

A components life begins the date it is manufactured, but if the published life limit is based on hours or cycles, then the tracking of that life would start when it was first operated. If the life limit is based on calendar time, then it would be the date installed.

Keep in mind that there may be seals or o-rings installed that have a shelf life. If a new or overhauled propeller sits uninstalled for an extended period of time, it may have to be disassembled and seals or o-rings replaced before it could be installed and entered into service.

The component manufacturer will have information in their technical manuals concerning shelf lives, recommended time between overhauls, and ultimate life limits.

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