What It Takes to Become an Aircraft Mechanic

It takes a lot to become an aircraft mechanic. And it should! After all, when you have your aircraft inspected and repaired, you want to be confident that the technician is certified and qualified to perform the needed maintenance so your aircraft maintains its airworthiness. Here at Double M Aviation, we employ certified aircraft maintenance technicians who have passed all the required practical, oral and written exams.

Types of Aircraft Maintenance Technicians

There are three basic types of aircraft maintenance technicians. The type of maintenance performed or certification is related to the type of practical experience the individual received.

  • Powerplant Technicians – Work on aircraft engines / powerplant
  • Airframe Technicians – Work on all aircraft components except the engines / powerplant
  • A&P Technicians – Work on both airframe and powerplant

FAA Aircraft Technician Requirements

The FAA requires that any individual who wishes to attain their aircraft maintenance technician certification must be at least 18 years of age and be able to read, speak and understand the English language. There are exceptions made for those who cannot read, speak or understand the English language, but in general, those airplane technicians are only authorized to work outside the United States.

The individual applying for their aircraft maintenance technician certification must have either 36 months of practical experience in the area they desire to test for or have attended and graduated from an FAA approved technical school for aircraft maintenance.

If the individual chooses to pursue his license via practical experience, they must receive at least 18 months of practical experience for each area of certification pursued (i.e. aircraft powerplants or aircraft airframes). So, an individual wishing to test for their powerplant certification must receive 18 months of practical instruction on powerplants. Additionally, if they wish to test for their aircraft certification they must receive 18 months of practical airframe experience.

To receive certification for both airframe and powerplant licenses, the individual must complete a minimum of 30 months of practical experience on both airframe and powerplant components at the same time. Upon the completion of this dual experience, the individual will be eligible to test for their A&P License.

Alternatively, individuals can also choose to attend and graduate from an FAA approved technical school for aircraft maintenance instead of attaining the required practical experience because the practical experience is often included within the aircraft technicians’ program.

After the individual has received the required aircraft maintenance training or educational program, he or she must pass a written test, an oral test and a practical test. Once these tests are passed, the aircraft technician’s certificate will be issued, and the individual may become an aircraft mechanic at long last.

FAA Repairman Certificates

FAA repairman certificates are available for individuals who work for an MRO, repair station, or air carrier. In order to get a repairman certificate, the individual must be at least 18 years old and read, speak, and understand the English language. The individual must be qualified to repair and maintain the aircraft and/or aircraft components, and they must work at and be recommended by their aviation employer. The FAA repairman certificate also requires a minimum of 18 months of practical experience or successful completion of a formal training course.

Transitioning from Military Aircraft Technician to Civilian Aircraft Technician

Individuals who worked on aircraft in the military may be able to transition some of that experience to their civilian aircraft maintenance technician certification. In order to become a certified aircraft maintenance technician, the individual must have either 18 months or 30 months of practical experience. In order for the military aircraft maintenance to qualify, the program must be approved by the FAA. A complete list of approved military aircraft maintenance technician specialties can be obtained at any local FSDO office.

In addition to being in a military program that is approved by the FAA, the individual must also present an official letter from the military employer that lists the specific duties and the dates while employed by the military.

Once all the documentation and experience has been verified, the individual must take and pass a written, oral, and practical examination in order to receive their aircraft maintenance technician certificate.

Aircraft Maintenance at Double M Aviation

Double M Aviation employs aircraft maintenance technicians who hold A&P licenses with years of experience working on general aviation aircraft while also providing a path for these experienced technicians to pass their knowledge on to apprentice technicians who require the practical experience needed to obtain their license.  This means that we can perform all the needed repairs and required inspections on your piston-engine or turbine engine aircraft so that you can continue flying. If you need avionics or paint, our field also has a paint shop and an avionics shop.

For more information about our aircraft technicians and services, give us a call at 863-940-3450.



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