Chapter 11. Safety, Ground Operations, & Servicing
Servicing Aircraft Air/Nitrogen, Oil, and Fluids
Checking or servicing aircraft fluids is an important maintenance function. Before servicing any aircraft, consult the specific aircraft maintenance manual to determine the proper type of servicing equipment and procedures. In general, aircraft engine oil is checked with a dipstick or a sight gauge. There are markings on the stick or around the sight gauge to determine the correct level. Reciprocating engines should be checked after the engine has been inactive, while the turbine engine should be checked just after shutdown. Dry sump oil systems tend to hide oil that has seeped from the oil tank into the gear case of the engine. This oil will not show up on the dipstick until the engine has been started or motored. If serviced before this oil is pumped back into the tank, the engine will be overfilled. Never overfill the oil tank. Oil will foam as it is circulated through the engine. The expansion space in the oil tank allows for this foaming (oil mixing with air). Also the correct type of oil must be used for the appropriate engine being serviced. Hydraulic fluid, fuel, and oil, if spilled on clothes or skin, must be removed as soon as possible because of fire danger and health reasons.
When servicing a hydraulic reservoir the correct fluid must be used. Normally, this can be determined by the container or by color. Some reservoirs are pressurized by air which must be bled off before servicing. Efforts must be made to prevent any type of contamination during servicing. Also, if changing hydraulic filters, assure that the pressure is off the system before removing the filters. After servicing the filters (if large amounts of fluids were lost) or system quantity, air should be purged and the system checked for leaks. While servicing tires or struts with high pressure nitrogen, the technician must use caution while performing maintenance. Clean areas before connecting filling hose and do not overinflate.
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