Onboarding Aircraft Potable Water – Process & Best Practices

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Sofema Online (SOL) www.sofemaonline.com considers in detail the instructions and guidance for the connection and onboarding of potable water to an aircraft


The objective is to ensure that clean, potable water is safely and efficiently onboarded to an aircraft.

>> Potable water must be carefully loaded onto an aircraft to guarantee that it is safely and efficiently onboarded to an aircraft, ensuring the health and safety of all onboard.

Connecting and Onboarding Potable Water to an Aircraft

Equipment and Materials Needed:

>> Potable water service truck or cart equipped with a water pump.

>> Food-grade hose with appropriate connectors.

>> Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): gloves, safety glasses, and high-visibility vest.

>> Disinfectant wipes or spray.

>> Water quality test kit (optional but recommended).


>> Ensure the aircraft is properly parked and chocked.

>> Turn on the beacon lights of the service vehicle to indicate that servicing is in progress.

>> Wear the necessary PPE.


>> Ensure the water source is approved for potable water and has been tested for contaminants.

>> Inspect the hose for any visible damage, dirt, or contaminants. If any are found, do not use the hose.

>> Ensure the hose has been stored properly, keeping the ends capped when not in use to prevent contamination.

Aircraft Connection:

>> Locate the aircraft’s water service panel. This is typically found underneath the aircraft fuselage, but the exact location can vary depending on the aircraft model.

>> Open the service panel door.

>> Using disinfectant wipes or spray, clean the aircraft's water fill port and the hose connector to prevent contamination.

>> Connect the hose to the aircraft’s water fill port. Ensure a secure connection to prevent leaks.

Water Transfer:

>> Start the water pump on the service truck or cart.

>> Monitor the water flow and ensure there are no leaks at the connection point.

>> Some aircraft have a water level indicator near the service panel. Monitor this to avoid overfilling. If the aircraft doesn’t have an indicator, be aware of the aircraft’s water capacity and monitor the amount being transferred.

>> Once the tank is full or the desired amount of water has been transferred, shut off the water pump.


>> Carefully disconnect the hose from the aircraft’s water fill port.

>> Use disinfectant wipes or spray to clean the fill port again.

>> Close and secure the aircraft’s water service panel door.

>> Cap the ends of the hose to prevent contamination and store it properly.

Documentation and Reporting:

>> Record the amount of water transferred, the source of the water, and the date/time of the service.

>> Report any issues or irregularities encountered during the process.

Final Checks:

>> Ensure the area is clean and free from any water spillage.

>> Remove all equipment and materials from the vicinity of the aircraft.

>> Signal to the aircraft crew or ground staff that the water servicing is complete.

Important Guidance Notes:

>> Always refer to the specific aircraft’s operating manual or ground service guide for any specific procedures or requirements related to that aircraft model.

>> Regularly inspect and maintain the water service equipment to ensure it's in good working condition.

>> Periodically test the potable water source for contaminants to ensure it remains safe for consumption.

>> Never rush the process. Taking shortcuts can lead to contamination or damage.

>> Always ensure that the water source is approved for potable use. Non-potable water can pose serious health risks.

>> If any irregularities or issues are encountered during the process, stop immediately and report to the appropriate authority.

Next Steps

Please see the following training course Aircraft servicing, cleaning, and detailing - 2 day for questions or comments please email team@sassofia.com



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