Longevity and Value of Aircraft Paint


The quality and age of the paint on your aircraft can have a significant effect on the value. The big question everyone likes to ask is how long should you go in between paint jobs? There is no direct answer to this question. I would say that a good rule of thumb is to evaluate your paint every five years to see where you stand and every year thereafter. Of course, it wouldn’t hurt to evaluate it every year from the start to be on the safe side. A good paint job can last upwards of ten years or more. I have seen instances where an aircraft was stripped and repainted after seven years, and it developed more corrosion after the new paint job than it developed prior to. With that said it is imperative that you ensure the paint shop you go with is a solid, quality shop. You are most likely going to spend more money but in the long run it will be well worth it. Repairing corrosion damage can get very expensive, not to mention you will have to repaint again. So, if you find a paint shop willing to give a great deal compared to other shops you should be a little skeptical. Just make sure you do your homework.

How the aircraft is maintained, stored, and used has a direct effect on how long a paint job will last. If you have a maintenance crew that beats up your cowlings and being carless with their tools (scratching the aircraft) this could reduce the life of the paint. Another factor in the longevity of your paint is where you store it. Is it stored outside on the ramp or in a hanger? Is it mostly in a salt laden environment, or a dry climate? Also, how the aircraft is used is a big factor as well. Where is your aircraft flown? Is it landing on dirt or gravel runways? Even regular runways can cause damage to your paint over time due to debris. As you can see there is a lot that goes into answering the question of how long you should go between paint jobs. If you have a good maintenance crew, they will make sure that you get the most out of your paint job by doing touchup when necessary and just taking good care of the aircraft.


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