Aircraft Purchase and Walk Around Checklist.
Note: Not to be use as a Checklist. Consult your POH
1. Check logs for entries of last annual, 50hr, 100hr, 200hr, and 1000hr
2. Check logs for engine and propeller overhauls.
3. Check logs for entries of compass swing, ELT check, fire extinguisher,
first aid kit, etc.
4. Verify that all TC required tests involving the transponder, the VOR, pitot
and static system,
IFR certification, etc. have been made and entered.
5. Ensure that all applicable ADs have been met and properly recorded.
6. Comply with applicable service bulletins and service letters.
7. Ensure proper paperwork for STC and other modifications, and that
“tags” are in the log.
8. Verify log entries for performed maintenance.
1. Documents review
a. Certificate of Airworthiness - category, class, restrictions
b. Annual Airworthiness Inspection Report - date of annual
c. Certificate of Registration
d. Pilot Operating Handbook (POH)
e. Weight and Balance - empty, useful load
f. Maintenance Records
g. Technical Logs - engine, prop, airframe, modifications
h. Radio Station License - even though may not be needed it is a sign of
2. Document kit - contains above plus insurance
3. Everything matches
a. Gauges and meters -
4. Detailed description of
a. Gauges and meters -engine, suction, fuel, voltage, CHT, EGT, etc.
b. Instrument panel - compass, DG, AI, turn coordinator, VSI, airspeed,
c. NAV/COM 1/2 with GS, 720 channel, TSO’s, ADF, GPS, Other -
d. ELT, first aid kit, fire extinguisher
e. Other equipment - safety, covers, maintenance, winterization kit
f. Other manuals
1. Spinner and back plate for cracks or looseness.
2. Blades for nicks or cracks.
3. Hub for grease or oil leaks.
4. Bolts for security and "safetying.
1. Inspect engine cowling for cracks, loose fasteners, or damage.
2. Look under engine cowling (remove if possible)
a. Cleanliness - residue, ash deposits, stains, leaks.
b. Leaks and spills
c. Hoses and clamps
d. Wiring and ties
e. Signs of wear and new parts
f. Battery corrosion, acid stains and loose connections
3. Check engine oil for quantity and condition. Has oil and oil filter been
changed at 50 hour intervals by a certificated mechanic.
4. Check engine coolant for quantity and condition.
5. Drain at least one pint of fuel, from each fuel test port (and from the fuel
filter and fuel tank sump, if possible), into a transparent container to check
for water or dirt, contamination.
1. Cabin door, latch and hinges for operation and worn door seals, fit,
2. Check doors, windows and cabin ceiling (header) for signs of water
3. Upholstery for tears.
4. Check condition of plastic interior trim.
5. Check for unusual smells in the cabin.
6. Check seat belts and harnesses for wear and replacement.
7. Check seats for correct movement and that proper stops are installed.
8. Trim operation for function and ease of movement.
9. Flap operation for function and ease of movement.
10. Rudder pedals and toe brakes for operation and security.
11. Parking brake.
12. Control wheels, column, pulleys and cables for security, operation and
ease of movement.
13. Mixture and throttle controls for operation, ease of movement and travel
14. Functioning fuel shut-off valves and fuel tank selector.
15. Internal lights for operation.
16. Heater and defroster controls for operation and ducts for condition and
17. Air vents for general condition and operation.
18. Plexiglas in windshield, doors, and side windows for cracks, leaks, and
19. Check instrument, avionics, and gauges for correct placement and
20. Instruments and lines for proper operation and security.
21. Check circuit breaker panel for correct markings.
22. All required placards are properly installed.
23. Check that compass card is installed.
1. Take a step back and look at the overall aircraft - leaning, favoring one
gear, nose oleo soft, bent legs, unbalanced fuel tank filling.
2. Check for dings, dents, hail marks, cracks, loose rivets, corrosion, flakes
of rust, etc. that must be repaired because of their nature.
3. Check for current damage.
4. Check for obvious signs of previous damage.
5. Check paint condition, coloration, changes, hiding modifications and
6. Feel paint surface for dimples, dents, curlicue ridges (corrosion).
7. Check for fuel leaks on fuselage surfaces.
8. Inspect exterior for signs of water leakage and damage.
9. Check for signs of corrosion.
10. Check cowling for fit and security. Note any repair work needed for
11. Check access panels for fit and security.
12. Baggage door, latch, and hinges for security and operation, baggage door
seal for wear. 13. Antennas, mounts and electric wiring for correct
installation, security and corrosion.
14. ELT for security, switch position, and battery condition and age.
15. Rotating beacon for security and operation.
16. Static parts for obstructions.
17. Check glass for cracks, crazing, and scratches.
18. Check tires and brakes for security and wear.
19. Inspect the belly for possible damage or excessive exhaust residue.
1. 1. Check wings and wingtips for security, dings, dents, hail marks, cracks,
loose rivets, corrosion, flakes of rust, etc. that must be repaired because of
2. 2. Check for current damage.
3. Check for obvious signs of previous damage.
4. Check access panels for fit and security.
5. Check for signs of corrosion.
6. Check paint condition, coloration, changes, hiding modifications and
7. Feel paint surface for dimples, dents, curlicue ridges (corrosion).
8. External lights for operation and security.
9. Check fuel caps for tightness and seal.
10. Check for fuel leaks on upper and lower wing surfaces.
11. Fuel tanks, caps and vents, and placards for quantity and type of fuel.
12. Check fuel vents for obstructions.
13. Pitot and static for security and obstruction.
14. Check pitot heat.
15. Check controls (including trim tabs, flaps, and cowl flaps) for alignment,
rigging, full travel, freedom of movement and security.
16. Control (aileron, rudder, elevator, flaps) surfaces, hinges, linkages, trim
tabs, cables and balance weights for condition, cracks, frayed cables, loose
rivets, tension, lubrication, etc.
1. Strut extension and proper oleo function.
2. Scissors and nose gear shimmy damper for leaks and loose or missing
3. Wheels and tires for cracks, cuts, wear and pressure.
4. Hydraulic lines for leaks and security.
5. Gear structure for cracks, loose or missing bolts, and security.
6. Retracting mechanism and gear door for loose or missing bolts and for
7. Brakes for wear, security, and hydraulic leaks.