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Citation Engine Compressor Washes Improve Efficiency

March 2018

Compressor washes should be a routine practice for every Citation operator. If done on a routine basis, compressor washes will reduce deterioration of the ITT margin, help restore engine efficiency, reduce engine workload and decrease fuel consumption. In addition, routine washes can minimize corrosion on internal engine components, reducing costly repairs.

The atmosphere, especially at low altitudes, is rich with contaminants. These contaminants include fine particles of dirt, oil, soot and other foreign matter in the air. Due to the large amount of air taken in by turbine engine compressors, a large number of these contaminants are ingested by the engine. Over time these contaminants build up on the compressor blades, vanes and engine cases, ultimately decreasing the efficiency of the engine.

The recommended frequency for an operator to conduct compressor washes depends on the environment in which the aircraft is flown. Document AC43-4A, found on the FAA website, provides a corrosion severity map, showing where contaminants are mild, moderate or severe. Refer to your appropriate engine maintenance manual for recommended compressor wash schedules. This is a recommended procedure and it is the responsibility of the owner/operator to perform these washes at an interval based on their flying environments.