Proper maintenance in the aircraft is imperative especially when inspecting for corrosion to aircraft fuel leaks and other damages, which could lead to disasters. Repairs can be very costly and time-consuming, that is why corrosion control is crucial. To ensure that an aircraft is in good condition to fly, it is important to understand firsthand the possible causes of corrosion the most effective way to control it.
Causes of Corrosion
Fuel contamination is oftentimes the cause of corrosion in aircraft fuel tanks. The cause of fuel contamination is the primarily bacteria. It comes from already contaminated fuel or poor fuel tanks maintenance and failure to inspect properly.
Aircraft fuel tank corrosion control begins with proper maintenance. While some products minimize the bacteria, no products can completely prevent bacterial growth in the tanks. Thus, implementing a proper maintenance routine is the only way to control corrosion. Using these products together with a good maintenance routine will help prevent expensive repairs.
Inspect thoroughly the entire fuel system. If there is corrosion, damage assessment is necessary to determine the extent. Follow the protocol in repairing fuel tanks, including documentation. The process involves cleaning and stripping the finish from the area where there is corrosion. Then, followed by the removal of corrosion, and then restoration of the surface protective film. The part may be replaced, depending on the extent of damage. Refer to the damage limit set by the manufacturer.
Removing corrosion is a tedious and time-consuming process. It involves blast cleaning and then blending of reworked areas in the surrounding surfaces. Then, there will be more cleaning with polishers and brighteners for corrosion control in aircraft fuel tanks.
Fuel Tank Leaks Repair
Corrosion can cause leaks and other significant problems in the fuel tank. A fuel leakage can ground an aircraft for days or even weeks to repair it. It is one of the most time-consuming repairs. It requires expertise and extreme scrutiny to make that there will be no holes and leaks overlooked. One must also be very familiar with the type of fuel tank system the aircraft has. Only knowledgeable and expert personnel do the repair. TO be more certain, contact the supplier or manufacturer of the fuel tank.
Repairs are done either in the field or in an FAA-approved repair station. Once repair is completed, it is critical to run another inspection to see if there are still leaks. If there are none found, the fuel tank still needs to sit for at least one more day before installing it to ensure that there are no small leaks.
Corrosion control in aircraft fuel tanks will not only prevent costly repairs, but also to keep the aircraft safe. Implementing a continued maintenance and inspection program in aircrafts will help prevent or minimize corrosion. This will prevent the need for expensive and time-consuming corrosion rework and removal, and fuel leaks repairs due to corrosion.