Beware Fat Gasket

Champion filter kits may have been packaged with a gasket that wont stop leaks


The following information is derived from the FAAs Service Difficulty Reports and Aviation Maintenance Alerts. Click here to view “Airworthiness Directives.”


Every Champion CF0100 and CF0101 oil filter is packaged with a gasket kit that contains a copper gasket, a square rubber gasket and a flat rubber gasket – all of which are used to prevent the oil filter housing assembly from leaking. Some of the square gaskets may have been manufactured thicker than called for in the manufacturers specifications. The square gasket, supplied in the kit, should be 0.180 inch thick. Some gaskets were found with a thickness of 0.25-inch. The manufacturer is asking for the return of all filters having a date code of four characters only. Filters with this type of date code are at least 10 years old. Operators are urged to check their stock rooms and parts bins for any of the suspect filter kits and return any found to the manufacturer as soon as possible.

Beech C-23 Sundowner
Nose Gear Failure

The nose landing gear separated from the aircraft when the nose gear lifted off the runway at takeoff. The pilot aborted the takeoff and the propeller and nose cowling were damaged when they hit the runway.A technician found the nose landing gear housing assembly broken where the steering assembly is attached. There was evidence of a pre-existing crack that progressed to the point of complete failure. The cracks may have been the result of exceeding the turn limits during ground movement.Part total time – 500 hours.

Cessna 172C Skyhawk
Engine Exhaust System Discrepancy

During an annual inspection, the technician removed the cowling and found evidence of massive exhaust leaks at the number 2, 3, and 4 cylinder exhaust flanges. The inboard flange attachment nut was missing from the number 2 cylinder, and the number 2 and 4 inlet stacks were improperly oriented. The inlet stacks are designed with a formed flat on one side. These two inlet stacks had been installed with the flat facing away from the induction elbow. Due to the misalignment, the flange gaskets failed.Part total time – 111 hours.

Cessna 172N Skyhawk
Engine Failure

During a cross-country flight, the engine oil pressure began to fluctuate between zero and 60 psi, the engine began to vibrate and then the engine failed. The lower part of the aircraft was saturated with oil. Further inspection revealed the oil system quick drain was missing. There was no provision made for safety wiring the quick drain after its installation.Part total time – 557 hours.

Cessna 172S Skyhawk
Rudder Pedal Defect

While conducting a 100-hour inspection, the technician noticed a defect on the copilots left rudder pedal.The bolt and nut used to secure the rudder pedal were loose. The hardware was still in new condition however, it was evident the hardware had not been torqued when originally installed. The plastic self-locking device on the nut had never been penetrated.Part total time – 195 hours.

Cessna 177RG Cardinal
Landing Gear Failure

During a landing approach, the pilot selected the landing gear to the down position and heard a popping sound that seemed to come from under the floor. The pilot was forced to make a gear-up landing.The technician found the main gear actuator rod-end bearing split apart at the spherical end. It appears the failure began at the hole in the rod-end that is used for the grease zerk. Cessna Service Information Letter SE79-37 recommends replacing the rod-end with a new part, however this new part has been superseded by a later part. Part total time – 4,580 hours.

Cessna 402B Businessliner
Wing Flap Failure

The pilot reported that the wing flap system failed during a landing approach.A maintenance technician determined the upper flap extend cable on the right side had broken approximately 12 inches outboard of the actuator chain attachment point. Improper cable routing and/or incorrect cable tension might have caused this damage.Part total time – 10 hours.

Mooney M20J
Landing Gear Failure

The aircraft owner reported the landing gear circuit breaker opened each time he selected the landing gear to the up position.A technician found the landing gear motor assembly jammed by broken clutch spring tabs. Mooney Service Bulletin M20-92 stipulates the springs should be replaced every 1,000 hours of operation and these had been replaced 763 hours earlier.

Mooney M20M
Propeller Spinner Defect

During routine maintenance, a technician discovered the propeller spinner bulkhead was severely cracked.There were numerous cracks that appeared to originate at attachment holes and the first bend radius. Since there were several pieces of the bulkhead missing, the spinner may have been in imminent danger of complete separation.Part total time – 473 hours.

Navion B
Landing Gear Defects

During an annual inspection, the inspector found the left and right main landing gear retraction side-brace links cracked.The side-brace links were cracked where the tubes are welded to the yokes. Part total time – 4,468 hours.

Piper PA-28-181 Archer
Carburetor Malfunction

The pilot reported the engine hesitated when he advanced the throttle.The technician removed and disassembled the carburetor and found fuel inside both float pontoons. This was a new style Precision, Model MA4-5 carburetor with a polymer float. Also, he discovered the screws that hold the throttle plate to the shaft were loose.Part total time – 200 hours.

Piper PA-28R-201 Arrow
Poor Engine Performance

The owner reported the engine performance was poor and deteriorating.A technician found the engine would hardly run at idle, manifold pressure was abnormally high, and afterfired during throttle reductions. He also noted high exhaust gas temperature on the number 3 cylinder. He shut down the engine, opened the cowling, and discovered the number 1 and number 3 cylinder intake seals were partially ingested. Fortunately, pieces of the seal had not been drawn into the cylinders.Part total time – 44 hours.

Piper PA-31-350 Chieftain
Landing Gear Door Damage

After returning from a flight, the pilot reported a landing gear door was broken.A technician found the left main gear door forward hinge was broken and the door was bent from contacting the wheel.AD 80-26-05 deals with this subject, and this aircraft was in compliance with the AD. In accordance with the AD, the original hinges were replaced with a new design.

Piper PA-34-200T Seneca
Engine Failure

The pilot reported that the right engine failed in flight. A technician found water droplets in the fuel filter bowl and concluded the water had frozen at altitude and obstructed fuel flow. The aircraft had been refueled before the last flight and the fuel truck ran out of fuel while servicing the right wing. The aircrafts fuel drains were not checked for water after the refueling was completed. After purging the fuel tanks and filling them with fresh fuel, the engine performed satisfactorily.

Teledyne Continental 520 Series
Throttle Lever Wear

The pilot reported the right engine failed to respond when he moved the throttle control.A technician found the throttle lever worn completely through, which disconnected the linkage from the throttle control. Over the past eight years, the technician has found this defect more than 10 times on different aircraft.The Teledyne Continental 520 series engine in this case was installed on a Beech 58 Baron, but is also used on Cessnas, Pipers and other aircraft. The same kind of throttle lever, basic part number 632555-XX, is used on many of the TCM 520 series engine installations.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here