Do you have to use full flaps for landing?

So you may think this is similar to the “Should I use flaps for landing” topic that someone else posted, but this is specifically talking about if you have to use full flaps or if you can use some other degree of flaps if it’s easier. The reason I say if it’s easier is that just yesterday I wanted to land 737-800 with flaps full. The problem is the full flaps created so much lift that it was almost impossible to get the planes to nose down to descend at a healthy rate. Even when I trimmed down a lot (I trimmed down about 70% and just then could I barely get the planes to nose down to descent). Not only that but the full flaps were causing so much drag that I ended up slowing to a really low speed of around 90 kts before I realized I was slowing down really fast. (I thankfully didn’t stall and never even got to a warning that I was approaching a stall). So this asks the question, do you need to deploy your flaps fully on landing, or can you have the flaps maybe to a little lower degree to exchange it for better control of the aircraft. Would love to hear your thoughts



Not all the time.Some times I have to land with a number lower than full.It depends on the winds


Only if I’m heavy

I use full flaps on the 737 all the time. My final approach speed is usually around 130kn at flaps 40°


Not all aircraft are required to use full flaps. Sometimes, aircraft are actually better with flap degree being low See above.


Ok thanks a lot, because like I said in the post, having flaps on the full setting took away a lot of my pitch control, I’m happy that I now know I can take away some degree of flaps to get some more pitch control and still be realistic. (also means I don’t have to trim down 70%, so that’s a plus)


On the 73-7 I use the notch above 40. Its not to much lift but not to little and it works great.

I can say on the C130 community we practice full 50 and no flap landings all the time.

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not necessarily only if you are heavy and or overweight

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30 degrees is standard for 737, certain circumstances may require other settings

Such as flaps 40 for short runways

I always use either flaps 30 or 40. Here is an example, yesterday when I flew into Denver I used flaps 30 because I had 12,000 feet of runway. However, later that day when I landed at Chicago Midway (KMDW) I used flaps 40 because the runway was only 6,000 feet long

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I recommend at Flap level 3

You dont use Flaps 40 for the 737 unless it is a short landing with little overrun options like at airfield like KMDW. For other aircraft you will usually only us the seconds to last flap setting in instances of high wind gusts. Such as if you have an approach of 12kts but wind gusting up to 24kts you would use flaps 25 on the 787 for example. This allows you to have a better stabilized approach with the gusts. But outside than that you really still use full flaps on all aircraft when landing.

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Most aircrafts I will use full flaps but In the Dash8 I usually always land flaps 15. But if its very windy I’ll go flaps 35 or if its a steep approach like EGLC flaps 35.

A318 I will use flaps three unless it’s a steep approach

The 737 is approved for flap 15, 30 and 40 landings.

Flap 40 is usually used for Autolands and if there are performance restrictions.

Really? Only 2? Im surprised you can gain lift with that. I use minimum flaps 5. What ever works for you i suppose.

777 pilots prefers flaps 25. Ends less thread point out but Boeing doesn’t recommend.

"At heavier, but sometimes even normal, weights our Vapp (Vref for flaps 30 plus half the stead headwind plus the full gust) will be uncomfortable close to this. In these cases we might use flaps 25 for landing as the limit speed is much higher. If we did this we’d use a Vapp of Vref for flaps 25 plus half the steady headwind component plus the gust.

Boeing say bleed of the steady headwind addition at some point before landing (i.e. between the threshold and the flare) but keep the gust addition"

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You fly dash8 very well, I never able to keep it centre line upon landing.

Depends on how fast the plane is going to land and how heavy it is