Ground Operation for Multiengine Aircraft

Good habits learned with single-engine airplanes are directly applicable to multiengine airplanes for preflight and engine start. Upon placing the airplane in motion to taxi, the new multiengine pilot notices several differences, however. The most obvious is the increased wingspan and the need for even greater vigilance while taxiing in close quarters. Ground handling may seem somewhat ponderous and the multiengine airplane is not as nimble as the typical two- or four-place single-engine airplane. As always, use care not to ride the brakes by keeping engine power to a minimum. One ground handling advantage of the multiengine airplane over single-engine airplanes is the differential power capability. Turning with an assist from differential power minimizes both the need for brakes during turns and the turning radius.

The pilot should be aware, however, that making a sharp turn assisted by brakes and differential power can cause the airplane to pivot about a stationary inboard wheel and landing gear. This is abuse for which the airplane was not designed and should be guarded against. Unless otherwise directed by the AFM/POH, all ground operations should be conducted with the cowl flaps fully open. The use of strobe lights is normally deferred until taxiing onto the active runway.