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General Aviation ADS-B Rebate Program

Frequently Asked Questions


Why is the FAA implementing this program?

The FAA is re-launching the rebate program to further emphasize the urgent need for pilots to comply with the ADS-B Out rule ahead of the 2020 deadline. This will ensure installations and defray the costs associated with the equipment and installation for eligible general aviation aircraft. Last year, more than 10,000 aircraft owners took advantage of the rebate and equipped their aircraft. The FAA estimates that as many as 160,000 general aviation aircraft will require ADS-B Out. In order to guarantee that general aviation aircraft (that operate in rule airspace) are equipped by January 1, 2020, approximately 23,000 aircraft would have needed to equip each year beginning in early 2013. This would have ensured there would be a balance between the expected demand for avionics installations and the capacity of avionics installers. Owners of general aviation aircraft who are particularly price sensitive are postponing their installations. This trend demonstrates that there is a near-term need to accelerate equipage in order to ensure that pilots, manufacturers and retail facilities have adequate time and capacity to equip aircraft in a timely and efficient manner.

Who is eligible for the rebate?

This program is for owners of U.S. registered, fixed-wing, single-engine piston aircraft whose operation required an onboard pilot, first registered before January 1, 2016. Industry has estimated that as many as 40,000 GA aircraft owners may be reluctant to equip until just before 2020 creating resource challenges and impact on installation and certification shops.

Why isn't the program retroactive?

The FAA's ADS-B Rebate program is targeted towards aircraft owners who have not yet equipped. The program is designed to create an installation incentive for aircraft owners who otherwise might postpone equipage because of the cost.

Why is the program limited to fixed-wing single-engine piston aircraft?

The FAA collaborated with industry to identify the aircraft owners who are most likely to delay their decision to equip with ADS-B because of cost concerns. We identified owners of fixed-wing, single-engine piston aircraft as those most likely to have cost concerns. The FAA's objective is to incentivize this large population of aircraft owners to equip as soon as possible.

Why are new aircraft excluded from this program?

This program is focused on aircraft owners who likely have not equipped because they are sensitive to the retrofit cost. The rebate program is designed to encourage the most cost-sensitive owners to equip now rather than wait until closer to the deadline. Since new aircraft typically cost $100,000 or more, it is doubtful that people who can afford to buy new would be dissuaded by avionics that cost $2,000 or less.

Why is only TSO-certified equipment eligible for this program?

Since the rebate program is aimed at this segment of the GA community, only TSO-certified Version 2 equipment is eligible. The cost of TSO-certified equipment is typically higher than similar equipment that isn't certified, making it less affordable for cost-sensitive customers. This program is geared to ensure full aircraft compliance to the rule which will ensure continuous access to the rule airspace in 2020. The FAA maintains a list of the eligible equipment at: http://www.faa.gov/nextgen/equipadsb/equipment. This list is updated approximately monthly. However, avionics manufacturers will have the latest status of TSO certification for their ADS-B Version 2 systems.

What if the equipment installed is not on the list of certified equipment?

Aircraft owners are only eligible for the rebate if they install new TSO-certified equipment. Read the full program rules. Any equipment with a TSO marking as described in the Program Rules is eligible.

Why aren't software upgrades eligible for this program?

Software upgrades are typically much less expensive than new equipment. Since the rebate program is aimed at cost-sensitive owners who need to equip to meet the deadline, eligibility is limited to the purchase of new ADS-B equipment.

Does a certified installer or repair station have to do the installation to qualify for the Rebate?

Aircraft owners who have a standard airworthiness aircraft (e.g. Part 23, 25, 27, 29) may have the ADS-B equipment installed by a repair station or an appropriately-licensed A&P mechanic. Owners of aircraft certificated as Experimental or Light Sport must adhere to applicable regulations and established standards when installing ADS-B equipment.

What happens if the equipment is not installed on the scheduled installation date?

The ADS-B Rebate program has allotted 60 days after the scheduled installation date to Fly, Validate, and Claim the Rebate. This allows the owner to resolve unforeseen issues with their installation or avionics. If the rebate is not claimed within 60 days of the initial scheduled installation date, the rebate reservation will be voided and the aircraft owner will have to apply for a new Rebate Reservation. Note that there is no guarantee that another rebate reservation will be available.

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Will the owner need to provide a sales receipt?

The FAA does not require the owner to provide any receipts or proof of purchase in order to submit a rebate claim. However, the FAA retains the right to request a receipt or proof of purchase from an owner at any time after a rebate claim is submitted.

Why offer $500 per owner/entity?

A minimal rule-compliant system costs approximately $2,000, plus installation costs. Equip 2020 performed a survey of aircraft owners and found that getting costs below $2,000 would encourage many price-sensitive owners to equip. The FAA chose $500 as an amount that would get the price down to that more-attractive range. This amount also maximized the total number of rebates the agency could distribute, based on total funding approved for the program.

Why is the rebate program limited to one rebate per owner?

To address the target audience, the FAA is limiting the rebate to one per owner. This helps focus the incentive on the largest group of aircraft owners with the greatest cost concerns. Also, tax regulations would have required additional processing for payments in excess of $600 per individual. This would have imposed an additional administrative burden on the FAA, would have required more information from the applicant, and would have delayed users from receiving their rebates. Owners of multiple eligible aircraft may only apply for one rebate.

Why offer a rebate instead of loan guarantees?

Industry representatives in the Equip 2020 GA working group told the agency that a direct subsidy or rebate would be preferable to a loan program. In addition, current loan programs that the agency is aware of are geared toward aircraft owners who are planning more high-end installations and not just minimal systems to ensure rule compliance. One loan program, for instance, offers a minimum loan of $10,000.

Who will the rebate check be mailed to?

The FAA is partnering with the Aircraft Electronics Association to distribute the $500 rebate checks. After the FAA validates a Rebate Claim and authorizes payment, AEA will mail the rebate check to the Aircraft Owner as listed in the FAA Civil Aircraft Registry.

How long will the program run?

The program will run for approximately one year or until the funds for all the remaining rebates are exhausted, whichever comes first.

Why is the FAA requiring that aircraft must be flown in the airspace defined in 14 CFR 91.225 for a minimum of 30 minutes?

This type of flight is essential to validate the new avionics were installed properly and are rule compliant. Since the target audience is people who generally fly in the designated airspace, they won't find it a hardship to perform the required validation flights.

How can people keep updated?

The rebate landing page will have a "subscribe" button in the top right corner that will allow interested parties to provide an e-mail address to receive updated information on the project. The agency will also utilize social media and other communication tools to share information as it becomes available.

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This page was originally published at: https://www.faa.gov/nextgen/equipadsb/rebate/faq/