The first few flights after maintenance are always the highest risk.
I had an alternator fail last week while I was in the shop getting an oil change. What's the likelyhood of a failure while in the shop? Amazing! It usually happens when I'm a thousand miles from home. Anyway, yesterday they got a new alternator in the plane, ran it up and everything was good. I flew it back to my home base and parked it for the night. This morning I flew it a couple of hundred miles north and everything was fine. I took off for the return flight home and the alternator light was on. I powered down everything but the transponder and one com. Everything. GPS, Aspen, lights, radio's, autopilot, the works. After a while I had to turn off the transponder (which I had squawking 7600) and last remaining com. The only things on were my Sandia battery powered backup attitude indicator (awesome piece of equipment) and my electroair electronic ignition. My Aspen blinked out after 30 minutes. I also turned off my engine monitor. I got to Milwaukee Class C and turned my transponder back on (7600) and my #2 com and called approach. They gave me a clearance through to my home airport at Racine, Wisconsin. I did pilotage for 200 miles on my ipad with Foreflight and when I landed after an hour my battery was still showing 12 volts. It was a beautiful day that turned out okay. Monday I'll try and figure out what happened with my new alternator...
Stay safe, stay healthy!
Wright Brothers Master Pilot, FAA Commercial Pilot
Aviation Director, Cessna Owners Organization Forum Moderator and Cessna Owners Author.
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