737 Landing

I have been trying to not use the APPR feature as much anymore so therefore this means doing my landings by hand and I have noticed that when I go to flare upon touchdown that the plane doesn’t touchdown but instead ‘balloons’ (if this term is incorrect please notify me) and I end up touching down way after the designated touchdown zone. Now I’m aware of the speed on landing a 737 and I can tell you that I’m landing at around 136-140kts. Please can anyone help?

Thanks, Jacob

What you are experiencing is “ground effect”.

Cut throttle at around 30ft and you will notice a significantly better landing experience.


What are your flap settings? Also I assume you are on the glide slope (GS) although if you are new to manually landing make sure you are coming in on the GS because your rate of descent and quickness to flare may cause the ballooning

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40° or 30° Depending on weight and yes an also try to maintain the GS and the localiser. 👍🏻

Try flap 30 regardless of weight and fly a bit slower, the 800 wing is very efficient. Don’t over flare, make a small check as you close the thrust levers at about 20-30 feet and flare by 2 degrees and just hold that attitude.


I may be incorrect but you can play with your elevator trim or make sure it is correctly set for approach as it can also determine if you will balloon or porpoise. Other than that, it just comes down to repetition and following along with the ground effect @Mags885 brought up, if you find yourself in that effect but not able to nicely apply yoke pressure… just ride it out until you feel the plane coming out of it nicely 🎢

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You are not wrong…trim will let you achive 3° glideslope angle and stabilising speeds. Another point if you fly your final approach speed all the way to runway you either gonna slam and bounce or if you flare too early you will float. Mainly you need to slow down more on crossing threshold you bring down near close to stall speed on flare.

Few points from internet.

1) To avoid floating, stay on speed . Ensure you’re stabilized on final approach, and don’t be afraid to go-around if you find yourself jockeying the throttle to maintain altitude and airspeed. If you’re fast on final and haven’t already, add full flaps. Adding as much drag as possible will help negate the drag loss during ground effect.

2) Based on your landing distance, set a go-around point before you cross the threshold. If your wheels aren’t down by that point, initiate a go-around.

3) If you’re already in the round out just a few feet above the runway and still too fast, make sure to flare slowly and smoothly. Hold pitch attitude the same and let the aircraft decelerate before starting a nose-up pitch for your flare. Ballooning and floating go hand in hand when pilots try to flare as they carry excessive airspeed.

4) Don’t overfocus on your touchdown point if you’re floating. The worst thing you can do is push the nose down in an attempt to hit your touchdown point. Driving the airplane into the ground nose first can cause a prop strike, hard landing, or porpoise. Instead, just pay attention to the go-around point you’ve set.

Preventing Float

Floating comes down to two primary factors: speed and drag. If you’re fast and in ground effect, it’ll take awhile for you to decelerate. No matter how bad you try to hit your touchdown point, the airplane naturally keeps flying since you’re well above stall speed.


Don’t flare!!! I was trained by an ex 737 pilot on a real 37 sim. Just maintain positive 2-3degree pitch and cut the throttle at about 23-30 agl

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I’d say be at 127kts at 30ft AGL and start pointing your nose up a little (1* or 2*)
at 20 cut all throttles and flare.
Make sure at 100 you do very little movements, don’t be rockin’ side to side
Takeoff at 10% + Trim
Land at 20% + Trim
I always do that and I barely float and butter more.

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Here’s performance data to help calculate v speeeds in the 737. B737 Performanc and Select Limitations.I use these and they work like a charm. Also remember to get the pink trim bar to disappear on approach so the it is easier to control the pitch and as different weights require different trim settings.


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