We passed our annual audit to renew our ISO 9001:2015, AS9120B certificate with flying colors.
We stock a vast inventory of PMA parts, so we thought we’d take an opportunity to write an article diving into what PMA actually means, and more specifically, why you can have confidence in PMA parts when you need a replacement.
PMA stands for Parts Manufacturer Approval.
According to faa.gov, PMA is “a combined design and production approval for modification and replacement articles. It allows a manufacturer to produce and sell these articles for installation on type certificated products.”
The FAA will permit the manufacture of a replacement part only assuming the following criteria are met:
1. The part has been tested.
2. The part meets FAA standards for airworthiness.
3. The part is manufactured in accordance with FAA approved procedures.
Historically, OEMs were the only entities who could manufacture replacement parts.
This meant high prices and Essentially, PMA approval means that entities other than the OEM can manufacture parts for your airplane. When a surge in commercially available PMA parts came into play in the 1990s, OEMs weren’t thrilled for a variety of reasons. They launched what amounted to a smear campaign on PMA parts, claiming they weren’t as high quality as the original.
The FAA took those claims seriously and issued an Airworthiness Information Bulletin that cleared things right up, reiterating that PMA parts had to go through a rigorous testing and approval process. A process the aviation industry could trust. The FAA said, “PMA and STC parts are thoroughly evaluated for compliance with respect to any changes they introduce and their effect on the original type design. The need for supplemental ICAs, new airworthiness limitations, and other conditions is established by the FAA to ensure the safe integration of the PMA and STC parts into the product.”
We’re proud to partner with vendors that take PMA seriously, and meet the rigorous requirements put in place by the FAA for safety reasons. Check out our inventory online and see for yourself!