Chapter 13. The Mechanic Certificate

65.21 Change of Address

If the technician changes his or her address, the FAA (at the address shown below) must be notified in writing within 30 days after the change of permanent residence:

Federal Aviation Administration

Airmen Certification Branch (AFS-760)

P.O. Box 25082

Oklahoma City, OK 73125

65.23 Refusal to Submit to a Drug or Alcohol Test

Any technician who refuses to submit to a drug test, which is required by 14 CFR part 121, appendix I or J, is subject to denial by the FAA of any application for additional certification or ratings, and suspension or revocation of any existing certificate or rating he or she currently holds. Appendix I of part 121 is titled Drug Testing Program, and requires a urine sample from the employee. Appendix J is titled Alcohol Misuse Prevention Program and requires that the employee submit to a breath test. Each appendix contains a “Definitions" section and a section titled “Employees who must be tested." Persons involved with “Aircraft maintenance or preventative maintenance duties" are listed in both appendices. There are various types (or rather times) when testing is required.

  • Pre-employment
  • Periodic
  • Random
  • Post-accident
  • Testing based upon reasonable cause
  • Return to duty testing
  • Follow-up testing

The numerous test methods and the harsh penalty imposed by the FAA on those who would involve themselves with these unauthorized substances, or abuse the allowable use of alcohol indicates the concern that the FAA has for the possible impairment of technicians. Aviation maintenance is a professional career choice that demands the highest caliber technical person to be capable of functioning at his or her maximum potential. There is no room in this profession for a person to be involved with substance abuse. By doing so, the technician not only endangers themselves, but their co-workers, and ultimately the customer who is expecting to have an airworthy aircraft delivered following a maintenance activity.

Mechanic Certification—Specific (by 14 CFR Section)

65.71 Eligibility Requirements: General

The requirements for obtaining a mechanic certificate are:

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Be able to read, write, speak, and understand the English language. (Note: If the applicant does not meet this requirement and is employed outside the United States by a U.S. carrier, the certificate will be endorsed “valid only outside the United States.")
  • Have passed all the required tests (written, oral, and practical) within the preceding 24 months from application.
  • Possess and demonstrate the appropriate knowledge and skill for the certificate rating being sought.

If a technician has one of the ratings, and desires to add the other, he/she must meet the requirements set forth in section (§) 65.77, and take the written, oral, and practical tests within 24 months.

65.73 Ratings

The FAA recognizes two ratings, airframe and powerplant, which may be obtained by a person upon successful application and testing. These may be attained either individually, or as a combined certificate.

Any person holding an aircraft (A) or aircraft engine (E) certificate prior to June 15, 1952, and which was valid on that date, may exchange it for the corresponding current certificate. If both ratings were held, the A & E certificate may be exchanged for an A & P.

65.75 Knowledge Requirements

Any applicant meeting the experience requirements listed in 65.77 must pass a written test (minimum passing score of 70, reference §65.17) covering the construction and maintenance of aircraft. Applicable portions of 14 CFR 43 and 91 are also included in the testing. Basic principles for the installation and maintenance of propellers are included with the testing that is administered for the powerplant rating. Successful completion of the written test is required before the candidate may apply for the oral and practical tests identified in section 65.79.

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