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3 Major ways the ways hangarbot can help you before you take off
HangarBot is a powerful tool for all pilots that minimizes the manual workload before arrival to the airport. Here are the top 3 ways hangarbot can help you before you take off.
HangarBot provides you with the ability to remotely turn on and off your engine preheating system from anywhere through our mobile app. You no longer have to spend time driving down to the airport to plug in your plane 3-6 hours before flight. If you have preplanned your flight, you can simultaneously schedule the app to automatically turn on and off your heater based on your predetermined flight time. When you arrive at your hangar, your engine and liquids should be nice and toasty. ThisHangarBot feature will allow you to spend those 3-6 hours currently spent waiting on your engine heater on something you enjoy.
FBO’s are designed to help pilots save time before take off, but what if the FBO is not doing what they told you they would? Have you ever wondered when the FBO pulled out your plane from that hangar? Why would you care you ask? If you informed the FBO that you will be departing at 3PM, they should pull it out right around then. How do you really know when they did? Was the plane refueled? With the HangarBot motion detection and camera you are able to get immediate notifications when the FBO has entered your hangar and see exactly what they are doing. You will be able to keep your FBO accountable for the tasks and timeframes they tell you.
The Hangarbot Hub will also allow you to check the temperature within the hangar before you arrive, this way you know exactly what the aircraft is feeling so you can prep it accordingly.
HangarBot will also allow you to make sure your hangar/ aircraft are at the perfect temperature. Cabin preheaters can be useful to warm up your avionics and provide passenger comfort through warmth in the cabin. There are several cabin preheaters that recently came to market. Aircraft Spruce carries various models that may be perfect for your aircraft. The HangarBot system allows the ability to control these devices through our Wifi Outlet. You may not know but, cabin preheaters can consume more electricity than most engine preheating systems. For this reason, you would not want to leave it plugged into a regular outlet at all times. With the HangarBot outlet you are able to turn the outlet on and off through the mobile app. Say goodbye to high energy bills and hello to an automated system.
If you are lucky enough to have a heated hangar, the HangarBot thermostat will integrate with your preexisting system. The HangarBot system will allow you to set the thermostat to turn on before you even arrive. This ability to heat up your hangar on demand vs setting your thermostat at a low temperature all winter, can save you money on your gas bill. Don’t let a freezing or hot hangar ruin the fun.
Piece of mind:
A pilots responsibility is to ensure that the aircraft is ready before flight. Not knowing if there was an unexpected visitor or an abnormality in the hangar can lead to an oversight in the preflight. Hangarbot can keep an eye on your aircraft with its built in night vision camera, live streaming video, advanced motion detection algorithm and optional wireless rechargeable connected door sensor and external cameras. You can be notified right away right on your iPhone when someone has entered the hangar or when ant motion was detected. From there, you can pull up a picture of live stream video.
If you are out flying, and cellphone is on airplane mode, you can review the security logs when you get connection again.
Knowing what is going on in your hangar, can help you add attention to things that should be looked at closer. If you are in a community hangar, chances are that your plane gets moved more than using the plane it self. You might not even be there when they pull it out. The towbar could be hitting that new 5 blade prop you just purchased when they are towing. Knowing exactly when your aircraft is moved is key in keeping the peace of mind that nothing has happened to your pride and joy, your aircraft.
How to set up your Hangarbot door sensor in 1-2-3 easy steps
Open your door sensor shipment and inventory the contents
- Door sensor
- Velcro srips
- USB charging cable
- Mode switch selection tool.
Take the mode switch selection tool and find the mode switch access port on the side of the door sensor. Push the mode selection tool twice in the port. Observe the status light solid green. The door sensor is ready to install.
You will need to select a location for mounting the door sensor and magnet. They need to be placed within ½ inch of each other. Closer is better. It does not matter which gets attached to the door. To assist with placement the door sensor can be placed in magnet sensing mode with the mode select switch. Press the mode switch once and the door sensor status light will blink green while you position the magnet and/or the door sensor. When it the magnet is detected the status light with change to red.
Congratulations! You can now pair the door sensor with your phone app!
Our Top Five Tips for Night Flying
Night can be one of the most delightful and spectacular times to fly. At night, the skies aren’t as congested, turbulence kicked up by daytime heating is diminished, and winds can be calmer, making for smooth flight conditions. Night flying has always had its unique charms. It seems to bring out new sights and sounds that aren’t around in the daytime, and while the stars and moon create a dazzling display on clear nights, flying over cities can be just as breathtaking. However, when the sun goes down, a new set of adaptations, challenges, and rules kicks in.
We adore night flying and wanted to share our best tips for maximizing your night flying adventures:
Be Weather Wise
Checking the weather should be the very first thing you do before taking flight at night. It’s simple enough to see bad weather during the daytime. At night, however, clouds, rain showers, and thunderstorms are more difficult to see visually.
Before you take off, you’ll want to be a bit more careful about checking the weather, including current METARs, TAFs, and the area forecast. Pay special attention to the temperature and dew point spread. Nighttime is a common time for the fog to form, and it can form quickly.
Unless you’re instrument-rated, equipped, and current, you might consider canceling a long cross-country night flight unless the forecast calls for clear weather, and you can look outside and see the stars.
Let There Be Light
Per FAR 91.209 (a), you cannot operate an aircraft without operating lighted position lights from sunset to sunrise. Lights are obviously extremely essential for the preflight through postflight processes. Preflight the aircraft before dark or pull it into a well-lit hangar, if possible. Save a step and remotely turn on the lights with the HangarBot Hub and be ready to do your preflight and postflight checks.
One item essential to your night preflight is to check all aircraft lights: taxi and landing lights, rotating beacon and anti-collision lights, position lights, cockpit lights, and flashlights. They should all work.
If, like most of us, you fly under FAR Part 91 flight rules, you are not required to carry a flashlight at night. However, if you don’t have a hangar, how will you conduct your preflight in the dark? What will you use as a light source if your airplane’s panel goes dark? We strongly encourage you to carry at least two flashlights at all times. Two we really like are the Mini Maglight and the Surefire Aviator.
Keep in mind that that extra fuel is required when flying at night. The FAA requires a 45-minute reserve for night VFR flights in fixed-wing airplanes, while the daytime minimum is 30 minutes. It is also important to understand that not all airports offer fuel services at night. Therefore, you should always have extra fuel on hand in case things don’t go as planned. Lastly, apply common sense. Every airplane and situation is different, but pilots flying for personal reasons must determine a conservative reserve and not go below that amount of Fuel in the tanks for any reason.
One of the most important pilot education tips for night flying is to be cautious of visual illusions. Because our human senses are adapted for ground use, sensory input during a night flight may not accurately reflect the movement of the aircraft. This inaccurate reflection can cause something known as a sensory illusion.
Many pilots fly either too high or too low at night because of these false visuals. Falling for these visual illusions can result in bumpy landings, unwanted turns, disorientation, and other dangerous situations. Then there are the landings. Landing is tough, and landing at night is even tougher. Poor lighting and precipitation around the airport can leave you low, and brightly lit airports can leave you high.
A good way to avoid night illusions is to fly to and from airports with visual approach slope indicators (VASIs) or approach lighting systems. You may want to also consider investing in night-vision goggles (NVGs). These goggles provide an extradentary capability for you to perform safe takeoffs and landings because they are sensitive to infra-red (IR) light, which comes from the stars and the moon.
Ensure you are fully rested before flying during a normal sleep pattern. If you don’t get adequate sleep before your flight, you can easily fall asleep in this peaceful atmosphere, which can be dangerous for not only yourself but also other aircraft and passengers. Before your night flight, make sure you’re well-rested and bring something to help keep yourself awake (e.g., caffeine or a copilot). Also, avoid heavy meals, which may affect your alertness.
Let’s face it, even after taking these steps, a long flight at night can be mentally and physically exhausting. We highly recommend having the hangar door open before you get there, so you don’t have to power down, open the door, and then put on the tow bar. Utilizing HangarBot’s easy-to-navigate app and it’s door controller, you can easily execute instant actions such as streaming live video from hangarbot’s built in camera, verify the area is clear and, then use it to open the hangar door.
While night flying can be a little more challenging, the rewards are truly amazing. Before you embrace night flying solo, be sure you have complied with the requirements set out in FAR 61.109 (three hours of night flight training, including a cross-country flight of more than 100 nautical miles in total distance and ten takeoffs and landings to a full stop).
Enjoy the magnificent night skies!
How Dumb Is Your Hangar?
Whether your hangar is small or large it shares the same history of all hangars throughout the country. Hangar derives from the Middle French word hanghart, meaning enclosure near a house. Whether you picture the history of hangars as the Wright brothers wood hangar back in 1902 or Hangar No. 1 the first built hangar constructed in 1921, a hangar seeks to provide the same basic needs. At a basic level, the hangar itself aims to protect the investment that is currently being stored inside of it. However, in the new era, the hangar can be so much more than just a building, it can be a venue for enjoying the things and people that you love.
It has become common for people to turn their hangar into their second home and customize it to fit their lifestyle.
Through the years products have emerged to create a smart home atmosphere. As the creation of smart home products gained interest in the early 2000’s, smart home products became more common and affordable. Smart homes today can serve many purposes but are mostly used for security and efficiency. As a society, we have begun to crave the peace of mind and ease of use that smart home systems offer. No longer is something a smart or dumb device, its a normal part of life, or its a difficult part of life.
People choose to turn their house into a smart home for many different reasons whether it be to save energy and money or provide your home with a top of the line security system. A smart home can offer so many other features such as regulating everyday tasks and providing entertainment. You may have products in your home already that you didn't even know are considered smart home products, like a rumba or alexa.
With all of these great benefits that a smart system offers why not use them in your hangar as well? For most people a hangar is like their second home so why not upgrade it like you do with your home. Protect and enjoy the things that you love. HangarBot allows the same control, automation and security of a smart home at an affordable price. What is so special about HangarBot is that it was made by pilots specifically for pilots and their hangars. You will find things like squawk logs, hangar door openers and other aviation specific uses. While you may be able to piece together several wifi home automation solutions in the hangar, there is no unified solution that works over cellular.
Many people think that you need to have wifi in your hangar in order to integrate any “smart hangar” features. With HangarBot, this is not true. Since HangarBot is a cellular based device it can bring high speed data into your hangar. Unlike cellphones, HangarBot has an external high gain antenna, allowing you to get the best possible connection, even if that means putting the magnetically mounted antenna on the roof.
Since HangarBot is an out-of-the-box solution, all products work right out-of-the-box without any complicated pairing processes or set up. Depending on your use case, HangarBot helps pilots with several high level categories:
- Proper Aircraft Cold Weather Maintenance
- Hangar Security
- Aircraft Management
- Access Control
- Pilot and passenger comfort
- Hangar entertainment
Imagine arriving to your hangar with the engine already preheated, the door opening and the peace of mind that no one has entered your hangar since the last time you were there. Perhaps you have the FBO pull your plane out, know if they nicked the propeller when setting up the tow bar or if they left your plane on the ramp baking in the sun for hours unnecessarily. You love your aircraft, why not be smart about protecting it and enjoying the airport experience with a smart hangar solution.
For more information about how you can be smart check out the Hangarbot products at hangarbot.com