The IFR and VFR tests are both 24-month tests. Once your aircraft is tested the next test is due in 24 months by the last calendar day of the month.

Every two years.  This information is found in 14 CFR 91.411.  An IFR pitot static test is required if you use your aircraft for IFR flight and in IMC conditions. The test must be performed by a certified repair station with ratings for this service – which Top Flight Avionics is.  All IFR and VFR operators are required to have the transponder inspection every two years by a certified repair station.  See 14 CFR 91.413.

(See links in the text to FAA Requirements)

The aircraft's pitot static systems, altimeter (including a scale error test), and automatic altitude-reporting system must have been inspected and tested in the preceding 24 calendar months before flying IFR in controlled airspace with the requirements of 91.411 Altimeter system and altitude reporting equipment tests and inspections.  IFR testing usually requires removing the altimeter and altitude encoder for bench testing or adjustments and system leak checks of the pitot and static system. The transponder inspection tests functions of power output,  frequency and side lobe suppression. Encoder Pump up is required.

(See links in the text to FAA Requirements)

The VFR transponder must be tested and inspected and certified every 24 month in accordance with the requirements of 91.413 ATC transponder tests and inspections.  For VFR the FAA requires all transponder-equipped aircraft to be inspected and testing of the radio to verify the proper operation of the ATC Transponder. Power outputs, radar systems such as altitude readouts or duplicate targets, and side lobe suppression are tested. We also look at Mode A and C receiver sensitivity. Encoder Pump Up is not required.  These tests can usually be done in less than one hour. 

FAR 91.411 states that “no person may operate an aircraft in controlled airspace under IFR unless within the preceding 24 calendar months, each static pressure system, each altimeter instrument, and each automatic pressure altitude reporting system has been tested and inspected and found to comply”.

FAR 91.413 states that no person may use an ATC transponder that is specified in 91.215(a), 121.345(c), or 135.143(c) of this chapter unless, within the preceding 24 calendar months, the ATC transponder has been tested and inspected and found to comply with Appendix F of part 43 of this chapter; 

FAR 91.411(b) states that the tests must be conducted:

  1. The manufacturer of the airplane, or helicopter, on which the tests and inspections are to be performed.
  2. A certificated repair station properly equipped to perform those functions and holding-
    1. An instrument rating, Class 1;
    2. A limited instrument rating appropriate to the make and model of appliance to be tested;
    3. A limited rating appropriate to the test to be performed;
    4. An airframe rating appropriate to the airplane, or helicopter, to be tested; or
  3. A certified mechanic with an airframe rating (Static pressure system tests and inspections only.)

  • An IFR certification test generally takes 2 to 2½ hours to complete including paperwork.
  • A VFR certification test is much less involved and will generally take 1 to 1½ hours to complete including paperwork.

Yes - For VFR operations, the FAA requires all transponder-equipped aircraft to be inspected to verify the proper operation of the transponder.

No – we can test and inspect your aircraft without you there. You could also have these tests performed when you schedule other maintenance. We will need to have access to the aircraft.  

We provide all logbook entries and any other required paperwork to you at the end of the tests whether this is being done at either our facility or at your location. 

Our CERTMAN and technician is trained in the testing and repair of Pitot/Static Pressure and Transponder systems. Most repairs can be done at the time of the inspection as we have parts in stock for these systems. We provide a quote before making any repairs.