How close to the 100 hour inspection time can I fly?
Answered By AOPA
You’re renting a Piper Arrow from a local flight school to go brush up on some complex aircraft operations (you normally fly only non-complex aircraft). When going through the aircraft’s inspections you see that it’s about to be due for a 100-hour inspection, in 3/10 of an hour to be exact. You had planned on making a day out of your flight; certainly flying more than what’s left before the inspection is due. Can you take this aircraft on your trip? If you do, will you be violating the requirement for 100-hour inspections?
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AOPA Staff Answer
You can take this aircraft on your trip and no, you would not be violating FAR 91.409 and its 100-hour requirement. Since you’re renting the aircraft, you’re the pilot (one is not being provided), and the aircraft is not being operated to carry someone for hire, the inspection can be overflown. Before the aircraft is offered for flight instruction again the 100-hour inspection is required to be completed. FAR 91.409 covers this topic but isn’t as clear as it could be. There are several Letters of Interpretation (LOI) from FAA’s Office of Chief Counsel on this topic but the most recent one can be found here; LOI. If you have a question about a regulation and what it means, chances are that someone else may have had the same question. Researching the regulation on the FAA website may turn up the answer you’re looking for; LOI search.