Min. Equip. Lists

Boltonpilot

New Member
As I'm reading FAR 91.213 concerning MEL's, I'm not really understanding why you would want to have one. I know that a MEL is an supplemental-type certificate which becomes can be activated for an aircraft when a request is made to the FAA, and for a letter of authorization from the near-by FSDO. If I'm reading it correctly, an MEL would put even more restriction to your ability to fly with inoperative instruments.
 

pavelump

Well-Known Member
Actually, it's just the opposite. An MEL is a list of equipment that can be inoperative without rendering the aircraft un-airworthy.

For example, if an aircraft had three attitude indicators, the aircraft's MEL might allow one of those three to be broken and still be ok to fly. But don't forget to placard it as "inoperative" in letters no smaller than 1/8" in height! OR something like that...

Hope that helps.
 

Eagle

New Member
keep in mind in the real worls MEL are for commercial ops.

For example, you might be allowed to operate with one landing light out, or both out in daytime VMC only, without the MEL telling you this you would be grounded. anything broken that is **not** on the mel, keeps the airplane grounded.


Anyone care to guess why most of the MEL gigs are on the last leg of the day?
 

tonyw

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Anyone care to guess why most of the MEL gigs are on the last leg of the day?

[/ QUOTE ]

Well, there's always the "but it was working in preflight, I swear" routine.

 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Anyone care to guess why most of the MEL gigs are on the last leg of the day?

[/ QUOTE ]

What a silly question! Everyone knows that planes break only on the last leg
They know when they are on their way home!
 

Eagle

New Member
[ QUOTE ]

What a silly question! Everyone knows that planes break only on the last leg
They know when they are on their way home!

[/ QUOTE ]


Ding Ding Ding..

the winner!!!
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Actually, it's just the opposite. An MEL is a list of equipment that can be inoperative without rendering the aircraft un-airworthy.

[/ QUOTE ]That really =is= a very helpful way to think about it. A lot of pilots out there turn to the equipment list in the POH and think that's the MEL.

If anyone's interested in looking at them, there are a couple of FSDOs that publish Master MELs for various aircraft on their web sites. The St Louis FSDO has a pretty good collection at
http://www1.faa.gov/fsdo/stlfsdo/mmel1.htm
 

Mr_Creepy

Well-Known Member
There's a slight terminology issue here.

Every aircraft has a MMEL - Master Minimum Equipment List.

What we are referring to here is Deferred Maintenance Items which I will hereafter refer to as DMIs.

Several operators have authorization to defer maintenance on items on the MMEL.

These are called DMIs. I often hear them referred to as MELs but that really isn't accurate.
 

Propilot

Well-Known Member
I have the same question as the original poster...

None of the replies answer the question...What is the advantage of having an MEL if you STILL have to comply with 91.205?

In other words, if you dont have an MEL, you only have to comply with 91.205. If you DO have an MEL, you STILL have to comply with 91.205 AND whatever the MEL says.

Why would anyone use an MEL?

Help, im taking my CFI checkride in a few days and I should know this.
 

Texasspilot

New Member
The SOP's and MEL override what it actually says in the FAR's.

In part 91 if somethings broken you can simply label it inop, secure it etc..and still go fly the plane. In 135 and Im guessing 121 if its on the airplane it has to be working unless you have an MEL which allows you to defer MX on the item.

For instance our aircraft have two attitude indicators. If one goes out then the plane would have to be grounded but since we have an MEL we can look it up and it say we can fly with it broken for 72 hours. Not everything is like this in the airplane and if its not in the MEL and its broken than it has to be working.

For instance I heard a story of a guy writing up one of the little fresh air valves. That item isn't in the MEL and so the plane was grounded at an outbase for a week.
 

Propilot

Well-Known Member
Ok that makes sense. I see why for other parts (135/121) it would be advantagous.

Am I correct in my assumption then that there is no advantage for having an MEL for part 91 operations? Does an MEL override part 91.205? I thought that you still had to comply with 91.205 even if you had an MEL?
 

Texasspilot

New Member
If i remember 91.205 it was basically the list of required equip for day/night VFR and IFR ops. All of that stuff is gonna have to be working as it is pretty much the minimum stuff required for flying in those conditions.

For instance your not gonna be allowed to fly with mission critical items inop. However depending on your MEL it may allow say strobe or nav lights to be inop but limit you to day VFR flying.

Your right that in part 91 flying there is no advantage to requireing an MEL as far as i know.
 

hattrick

Well-Known Member
there can be advantages for even pt91 flying. for example according to the mel that the flight school here operates under we do not need a single light to be operational during daylight hours. thats just one example that came to mind. so yes it can be useful. id suggest looking up an mel for an airplane your flying and have a look see. they really are easy to read and use
 

JaceTheAce

Well-Known Member
Here at UND we have MEL's, so it's not just for the airlines. Also, there's a flying club in San Diego that uses an MEL for their Seneca! Crazy huh?
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
Propilot said:
In other words, if you don't have an MEL, you only have to comply with 91.205.
Your starting assumption is wrong. Whatever makes you think that you only have to comply with 91.205? Only answer I can think of is that you learned one of the stupid mnemonics like TOMATO FLAMES and ended up thinking that's all that there is. If so, that's not your fault. I've done surveys on it and, while probably not statistically significant, have found that pilots who have learned the mnemonic are more likely to get a simple airworthiness question wrong than those who didn't.

If you don't have a MEL, you have to follow 91.213(d), which tells you you can't fly with =any= equipment that doesn't work unless certain requirements are met. Scroll down to 91.213(d)(2) which tells you about a whole =bunch= of equipment that is required to be in working condition in order to fly. Do you fly a Cessna single? Start with =everything= that has a "R" next to it on the equipment list in the Weight and Balance section [91.213(d)(2)(ii)]. (Can you fly that Cessna 172 if the stall warning is inop?)

And if it's not one of the bazillion "always required" items, then you have the deactivation/removal/placarding requirement.

It all of that the MEL is designed to avoid. It's a list of equipment, far beyond 91.205 that you can fly even if it's inoperative.
 

Propilot

Well-Known Member
hattrick said:
there can be advantages for even pt91 flying. for example according to the mel that the flight school here operates under we do not need a single light to be operational during daylight hours. thats just one example that came to mind. so yes it can be useful. id suggest looking up an mel for an airplane your flying and have a look see. they really are easy to read and use

Wait, so you are saying that your MEL overrides the part 91 requirement for having a anti-collision light on?


I dont think that is correct. 91.213(b) states: The following instruments and equipment may not be included in a minimum equipment list:

(3) instruments and equipoment required for specific operations by this part.



that means you still need a anticollision light.
 

wheelsup

Well-Known Member
Propilot said:
Wait, so you are saying that your MEL overrides the part 91 requirement for having a anti-collision light on?

that means you still need a anticollision light.
We used MEL's in our A36's and BE58's, which were strictly part 91 flights used for instruction.

From the MEL we used, I remember if the beacon was inop, the strobes had to be on at all times, but you could go. If the strobes were inop, the beacon had to be on at all times. I really can't remember if night flight was allowed with the a strobe(s) inop, daytime flight was ok, but my memory doesn't go back that far.

The cool thing about those MEL's - it was a "quick reference" handbook for the things on the plane. You would know right away, without looking at any other documents (the aircraft's POH, AD's, etc. etc.) if you could fly and in what conditions (night, IFR, etc.).

If something was broken, you could see right away what process needed to be done to "deactivate it". Yes - pulling the CB sometimes, but other times it was more involved and mx was required to do it. There are (O) -operator (pilots) and (M) -maintanence items on the MEL. O's could be done by us, but (M)'s had to be handled by MX and you couldn't fly until MX fixed it.

~wheelsup
 

MidlifeFlyer

Well-Known Member
Propilot said:
Wait, so you are saying that your MEL overrides the part 91 requirement for having a anti-collision light on?


I don't think that is correct. 91.213(b) states: The following instruments and equipment may not be included in a minimum equipment list:

(3) instruments and equipoment required for specific operations by this part.



that means you still need a anticollision light.
Maybe. Remember that the anticollision light requirement is conditional. All aircraft must have them for night flight (a "specific operation"). But only aircraft that have them to begin with have to have them on all the time (not a "specific operation"). There are still aircraft flying around with no electrical systems at all, let alone anticollision lights.

So you probably couldn't get an MEL approved that has them listed as not required for night ops, but the lack of need for them during daytime under a MEL is standard. The FAA's Master MEL for Part 91 Ops has the following entry on page 33-1

==============================
3. Anti-Collision Beacon Light System - - - May be inoperative for day operations.
==============================

(BTW, I see the FAA changed the location of the MMELs again. The new one -for now- is http://www.opspecs.com/AFSDATA/MMELs/Final/)
 
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