Why the FAA A&P License is Important

FAA A&P License  AirBus A380
The massive A380

The FAA A&P license is a must have for any aspiring aircraft mechanic.   This certification has many benefits.   Most aircraft maintenance jobs will require the FAA A&P license to get hired. 

Aircraft maintenance is an exciting career with lots of different areas to specialize in.   The average pay for an aircraft mechanic is about $53,000 per year.   Which is somewhat sad when you consider the amount of responsibility that aircraft mechanics take on.  However, this is only the average salary, there is huge potential to make more money for skilled mechanics looking to get ahead.  

Testing for the FAA A&P License

In order to get the FAA A&P license, one must pass the written, oral and practical tests.  Before those tests can even be taken however, one must meet the experience  requirements of FAR 65.77.  There are 3 ways to meet these requirements;

  • FAA Part 147 aircraft maintenance school.  This is probably one of the most popular choices for people.   These schools are located throughout the country. Some are private institutions while others are public.  There are even high school programs for students that are interested in this career.  Use the FAA part 147 school finder here.
  • Experience through Military.  This is the second most popular way to get the FAA A&P license.  The military is a great place to gain experience that will translate into the civilian marketplace.  The FAA requires at least 30 months of relevent experience for both Airframe and Powerplant.   The FAA will interview the applicant to review documentation proving the experience requirement has been met.   The DD214 form will be your best friend in this case.  It should document which MOS has been held and for how long.  Some occupational codes only count towards one certificate.  Find the list here.
  • Related experience.   This method has the same requirements, 30 months of related experience.  Work must be very well documented and work must be completed under a certificated mechanic.  A logbook is a good idea to keep track of every task performed.   The FAA will review each applicants’ documentation to ensure FAR 65.77 requirement has been met.

Once the experience requirement has been met, one may take the written, oral and practical tests.  These tests can be challenging so proper studying should be accomplished prior to taking the tests.  

Loads of Potential

The FAA A&P license is well worth the effort.  Aviation is an exciting career with lots of potential for advancement.  The A&P license is also a well-respected certification which other industries have grown to like.   It is even possible that the FAA A&P license will help an applicant find work in other fields because it shows the commitment to safety.    


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