CFI Renewal Window – 3 Calendar Months

Every two years flight instructors must renew their certificate and there are a couple of ways a CFI can do that, including, button limited to…

  1. Complete an in-person Flight Instructor Refresher Clinic
  2. Complete an online (e-learning) Flight Instructor Refresher Course
  3. Complete a check ride for a new CFI rating
  4. Within the preceding 24-calendar months maintain an 80% pass rate for student check rides with a minimum of 5 recommendations for practical tests
  5. There are a couple of other options that are less common… (ie- Through FAA Wings or through the local FAA Safety Program Manager)

I have opted for the electronic Flight Instructor Refresher Course (eFIRC). This is especially useful given the need to socially distance, with the eFIRC I’m able to renew my flight instructor certificate from the comfort of my own home.


I have opted for the AOPA ASI eFIRC, which I’ve found to be a very robust, informative and rewarding experience. At $124.00, a very reasonable value too.

My CFI expires on August 31, 2020, so you might be wondering why I’m working on the renewal now… During the month of May. Well that’s an easy question and the commonly misunderstood item I wanted to cover today.

A flight instructor can renew their certificate at any time before it expires. However, if you renew before the period beginning three calendar months prior to your expiration date, the expiration date on your certificate will change. Thus I can complete my CFI renewal during May 2020 and maintain my August expiration date. So my new certificate will expire on August 31, 2022.

Using the eFIRC method you can complete a number of modules prior to the three calendar months ahead of the expiration date as well, but ensure you read the fine print so you don’t short yourself.

Regardless, always remember to renew your flight instructor certificate on time, prior to the expiration. If you allow the certificate to lapse a checkride is required for the issuance of a new flight instructor certificate.

-Fly Safe, @MTElia1B9


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s