Most people experience these phenomena with a car. You want to overhaul your car and its engine, you buy an aftermarket part and it just doesn’t fit right. You bought the right part but it doesn’t quite fit like the manufacturer’s OEM part. This is called fit and finish. Third-party part makers are only guessing at the vehicle’s dimensions, so the part they make may not work quite right. Even being off by a small margin can affect the performance of the vehicle.
Well, the same holds true with an airplane as well. Except, there is a major difference between car parts and airplane parts – when an airplane part doesn’t work properly, it puts a lot of lives in immediate danger.
If you are out in the market for new airplane parts, especially for turbine engines like the PT6A or radial engines like R-985 and R-1340, then you might have stumbled across the acronym PMA. PMA stands for Parts Manufacturer Approval. These are aftermarket parts made by a third-party to fit inside your plane’s engine. These parts might even be approved by the FAA and if you ask a PMA manufacturer, they will assure you that the part works even better than an OEM part.
But the fact of the matter is that the only company that knows the true dimensions and workings of your plane’s engine is the original manufacturer. That is why OEM approval from the original manufacturer is so important when overhauling your plane’s engine. You want the people that made your engine to endorse the capability of the new part for performance and safety sake.
At Covington Aircraft, we use only OEM approved parts when overhauling your aircraft’s engine. This ensures that your engine works properly, performs well and keeps you safe, all while maintaining your plane’s resale value.