On December 4, 2002 the FAA published final AD 2002-24-07. The airworthiness directive (AD) mandates replacement of Roto-Master and RAJAY scavenge pumps installed on PA-60-601, PA-60-601P, PA-60-602P, and PA-60-700P airplanes. The FAA states that the proposed AD is intended to prevent failure of oil scavenge pumps and end plates which could result in loss of engine oil and possible loss of engine power.
The proposed AD affects approximately 650 airplanes in the US registry, at a cost of nearly $5,500 per airplane. The proposed AD mandates compliance within 50 hours time-in-service (TIS) after the effective date of the AD. AOPA has serious concerns over lack of data substantiating the need for mandatory pump replacements.
Based on the high TIS of Aerostar oil scavenge pumps and the lack of adverse scavenge pump maintenance history, the lack of FAA service difficulty reports, and lack of OEM data substantiating a service issue with the suspect scavenge pumps, AOPA fails to see any justification for mandatory replacement of Roto-Master/RAJAY scavenge pumps installed on Aerostar airplanes. Given that all four reported instances of worn scavenge pump end plates resulted from routine maintenance and inspections, AOPA believes that annual/100-hour inspections adequately detect unusually worn or damaged scavenge pumps. Thus, AOPA opposes the AD's proposed mandatory replacement of scavenge pumps on Aerostar airplanes. AOPA believes the FAA can best mitigate this concern through the issuance of a Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin (SAIB) highlighting the need to inspect for unusual wear or damage to scavenge pumps and endplates during regularly scheduled maintenance.