Drone Pilot Pre-Flight Checklist

Drone Pilot Pre-Flight Checklist

Whether you’re a novice or experienced drone pilot, keeping safety first will help you get the most from your drone flights. Use this pre-flight checklist whenever you begin a mission.

Before You Take Off

  • Check the current weather and windspeed conditions.
    Pro tip: Consider using a pilot weather app like NOAA Aviation Live Sky Weather.
  • Make sure your SD is card loaded and formatted.
    Pro tip: Make sure your SD card meets UHS speed class 3 (U3) and UHS video speed class 30 standards.
  • Check your drone and controller’s battery strength.
    Pro tip: Always return your drone to home the moment you get a low battery warning.
  • Check your controller’s signal strength.
    Pro tip: Position the antennas on your controller for maximum range. Consult your drone’s documentation for more info.
  • Make sure your lens cover and gimbal lock are removed.
    Pro tip: ND filters can help enhance your shots and they work as good lens protectors.

When You Take Off

  • Check your drone’s satellite strength.
    Pro tip: Drones use GPS signals to stabilize themselves in flight. Be extremely careful if a lack of GPS signals occurs during flight (your drone may alert that you are in atti-mode or attitude mode).
  • Wait for your home point and return to home settings to lock in.
    Pro tip: Consider using a launch pad and let your drone hover for a few seconds after take-off to lock in your home settings into position.
  • Double check your surroundings for obstacles.
    Pro tip: Consider flying with a visual observer or keep your drone in your line of sight if you are the sole pilot.

For More Information

For detailed flight and safety information from the FAA, see: faa.gov/uas
If you have drone related questions, get in touch: contact me