Instrument Rating ACS: II Preflight Procedures

This ACS topic guide is by no means a complete study guide. The points mentioned here are additional study suggestions and especially hint at some further in depth review in terms of SRM/ADM.

To determine the applicant exhibits satisfactory knowledge, risk management, and skills associated with the requirements to act as PIC under instrument flight rules.

*** Remember that you are potentially being questioned on all three areas and you can also potentially fail in any of them. ***


II Preflight Procedures

A Airplane Systems Related to IFR Operations
The general operational characteristics and limitations of applicable anti-icing and deicing systems, including airframe, propeller, intake, fuel, and pitot-static systems.

***Make sure you can delineate the difference between a IFR and VFR flight when it comes to systems. Legal requirements are one thing but in terms or SRM you would have several additional requirements for the flying machine you are operating.
IFR preflight procedure on a cockpit check and walk around are also somewhat different since you are now testing additional items such as Pitot heat / Prop heat / Windshield heat etc. Know about deicing and some frost removal and anti-icing procedures.
Part of this should also the engine pre-heat and knowledge of sensors that can be affected by snow and ice during ground operation and subsequently in the air when slush/water freezes.
It is save to say that during you instrument training you will have received zero training in icing, other than hearing your CFI saying that he will never get close to any icing situation ever. So how are you supposed to gain this experience?
There are some spectacular crashes of aircraft that are “approved” in known icing, so how come these accidents happen?***

B Airplane Flight Instruments and Navigation Equipment
***There are a few systems and instruments that we cannot realistically check during a preflight inspection. Some of these could be causing an abort early in the takeoff run (airspeed indicator not showing a rise in airspeed) but others such as VSI/Altimeter and some navigation equipment will show their issues only when in flight.
Make sure you know that the EFB backup you are carrying has its limitations as well.
Know common failure modes and that some systems can fail in a very sudden way and create a problem, such as a magnetometer driving a HSI or a GPS signal failure.***

C Instrument Flight Deck Check
To determine the applicant exhibits satisfactory knowledge, risk management, and skills associated with conducting a preflight check on the airplaneā€™s instruments necessary for an IFR flight.
*** This part will most likely be examined during the flight portion of the practical test but during the oral you will have to elaborate on the possible defects / causes and remedies. Know the IFR inspection requirements and how truly limited they are. From a legal standpoint you can go for years without checking your trim and autopilot servos. How do you feel about that in regards to SRM?
Operating with outdated equipment and databases is almost becoming commonplace now that updates are charged at $500 and up per year. What are the legal requirements, what is your opinion from a SRM standpoint?***