A & P Mechanic Maintenance Certification

by Mr. Bril

In Europe a U.S. registered helicopter (AS350-B2) has been maintained by a U.S. foreign repair station (FAR 145) maintenance organisation using the maufacturer’s maintanace program, but the maintenance has been cerified by an FAA Airframe & Powerplant (A&P) mechanic. Is this correct?

ANSWER: If the repair station has a rating and operations specifications authorizing them to maintain an AS350, they should sign off the work using a person authorized to approve aircraft for return aircraft to service on behalf of the the repair station. They should also use the repair station number on the release document.

However, an FAA A&P mechanic can maintain and release to service an U.S. registered AS350 helicopter if he has been trained and has the necessary tools to do so.

If the repair station does not have a rating for the AS350, and they contract to the A&P to perform or supervise the work, there is nothing to preclude him from approving the helicopter for return to service.

Were can I find the correct explanations, which FAR's?


FAR 43.7 – Persons authorized to approve aircraft for return to service.

(b) The holder of a mechanic certificate or an inspection authorization may approve an aircraft, airframe, aircraft engine, propeller, appliance, or component part for return to service as provided in Part 65 of this chapter.

(c) The holder of a repair station certificate may approve an aircraft, airframe, aircraft engine, propeller, appliance, or component part for return to service as provided in Part 145 of this chapter.

FAR 65.81 - General privileges and limitations.

(a) A certificated mechanic may perform or supervise the maintenance, preventive maintenance or alteration of an aircraft or appliance, or a part thereof, for which he is rated (but excluding major repairs to, and major alterations of, propellers, and any repair to, or alteration of, instruments), and may perform additional duties in accordance with §§65.85, 65.87, and 65.95.

However, he may not supervise the maintenance, preventive maintenance, or alteration of, or approve and return to service, any aircraft or appliance, or part thereof, for which he is rated unless he has satisfactorily performed the work concerned at an earlier date. If he has not so performed that work at an earlier date, he may show his ability to do it by performing it to the satisfaction of the Administrator or under the direct supervision of a certificated and appropriately rated mechanic, or a certificated repairman, who has had previous experience in the specific operation concerned.

(b) A certificated mechanic may not exercise the privileges of his certificate and rating unless he understands the current instructions of the manufacturer, and the maintenance manuals, for the specific operation concerned.

FAR 145.201 – Priviledges and limitations of certificate.

(a) A certificated repair station may:

(2) Arrange for another person to perform the maintenance, preventive maintenance, or alterations of any article for which the certificated repair station is rated. If that person is not certificated under part 145, the certificated repair station must ensure that the noncertificated person follows a quality control system equivalent to the system followed by the certificated repair station.

Return to Aircraft Maintenance Questions.

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