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The minimum equipment required to operate an aircraft under day VFR flight is listed in FAR Part 91.205b and c.

We use two great acronyms to remember what instruments and equipment are required for day and night VFR flights. For day flights we use the acronym: A-TOMATO-FLAMES. It stands for:

  • A – Altimeter

  • T – Tachometer

  • O – Oil Temperature Gauge

  • M – Manifold Pressure Gauge (If applicable)

  • A – Airspeed Indicator

  • T – Temperature Gauge (For each liquid cooled engine)

  • O – Oil Pressure Gauge

  • F – Fuel Gauges

  • L – Landing Gear Position Indicator (If applicable)

  • A – Anti Collision Lights (For aircraft manufactured after March 11, 1996)

  • M – Magnetic Compass

  • E – ELT

  • S – Seat Belts

For night flying we need to have all of the day VFR instruments and equipment required plus, the five listed below, we use the acronym - FLAPS for the required night equipment.

  • F – Fuses

  • L – Landing Light

  • A – Anti Collision Lights

  • P – Position Lights

  • S – Source of Power


On your checkride, just remember the two acronyms:


  • Night VFR - FLAPS


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