In 2015, there were 24,142,000 aircraft flight hours logged in total. With so much time spent flying, it’s important to take an active role in maintaining your aircraft to ensure it operates as it should. One of the most common issues pilots have to deal with is aircraft vibration. Vibration can cause a great deal of damage if unaddressed — and depending on the severity of the vibration, performing vibration analysis and correcting the issue should be one of your highest priorities.
Symptoms of Vibration
A couple of ways to tell if your aircraft is experiencing vibrations can include:
- Failure of instruments in random intervals
- Inaccurate compass readings
- Fatigue cracking that keeps growing
- Numbness in the pilot’s arms and legs
- Shaking or vibrating panels
Causes of Vibrations
An imbalanced propeller is one of the most common causes of vibration. Aviation equipment designed for propeller balancing can help you monitor the vibration and pinpoint the exact issue. This balance equipment is one of the most important tools in and aircraft mechanics arsenal and is one of the best ways to learn how to fix a standard vibration issue.
An imbalanced propeller can be fixed with the addition of weight distributed in the form of screws, nuts, and washers. However, aircraft maintenance professionals will be able to discern exactly what is needed via the readout from the balancing aviation equipment. However, if it’s found that the propeller isn’t the cause of the vibration, finding the true cause is imperative before you begin flying again.
Additional Causes For Aircraft Vibration
Complete vibration analysis will be helpful for pinpointing exactly where the vibration is stemming from and allowing you to monitor vibrations as you go. While propeller imbalance is one of the most common causes, a couple of others can include:
- A cracked intake hose
- A faulty alternator
- A failing cylinder
- Gearbox issues
- Belt resonance
- A wrinkled or buckling spinner
These are only a couple of several additional issues that can cause vibrations. Depending on the craft you have, causes can be numerous and pinpointing the exact issue can be a process of trial and error. This is what makes aviation equipment that specializes in vibration analysis invaluable to both pilots and maintenance teams invaluable.
If you are experiencing issues with vibration, don’t wait and let it get worse. Speak with a service technician before the vibrations go on to cause serious, and potentially grounding issues to your aircraft