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Use this tag for questions about pre-flight inspections and aircraft preparation.

"Preflight" encompasses many aspects of preparing for a flight, including obtaining a flight briefing and computing weight-and-balance, however this tag deals mainly with the preflight inspection - a basic check of the aircraft and its systems undertaken before each flight to ensure that no serious airworthiness issues or maintenance items ("squawks") exist, and that the aircraft is in a condition to complete the flight safely.

Preflight steps vary for each aircraft, however they often begin with a manufacturer's preflight checklist, and include things like ensuring that the engine has sufficient fuel and oil, the landing gear tires are properly inflated, the flight controls are free and correctly rigged, etc.

AOPA has an excellent article on the basics of a preflight inspection for additional information.