How to Find a Drone Serial Number?

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Updated June 27, 2022

If you are new to the world of personal flight vehicles, you may wonder how to find a drone’s serial number. The best drones, after all, include a serial number for identification purposes. So why would you need to find a drone’s serial number in the first place and how do you do it? Keep reading to find out.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • The vast majority of drones feature a unique identifier, called the aircraft serial number.
  • This serial number is useful for drone registration with the FAA or when sending out a drone for repairs.
  • A drone operator will find the serial number in the battery compartment, on the trail, on the original packaging, or printed on the warranty card.

Finding a Drone’s Serial Number

Unfortunately, each drone is different. If you are wondering where to register your drone, when to register your drone, or where to find the serial number, you’ll find varied processes according to the make, model, and type. Still, there are some common places where pesky serial number likes to hang out. Let’s take a look at some. As a reminder, a serial number is typically 14 or 20 characters long and may be accompanied by “S/N” or “SNID.”

Insider Tip

Most items you purchase have a serial number printed somewhere, so be on the lookout for similar reasons.

  • Near the battery – Open up the battery compartment and look for a string of numbers. Many drones place the serial number under the battery plate.
  • Check the tail – Many drone manufacturers print the serial number on or near the tail of the drone. Take a slow and careful look at the tail to find the number.
  • Somewhere else on the body – If the serial number is not under the battery plate or on the tail, check around the rest of the drone’s body. You’ll likely find it somewhere, typically resting next to a QR code or other relevant information.
  • Warranty card – If your drone came with a warranty card, it is likely the serial number is printed somewhere on it.
  • Instructions or packaging – When all else fails, check the drone’s instruction manual or the packaging. The serial number will be there somewhere.

Why do You Need a Drone’s Serial Number?

There are a couple of reasons why having a serial number simplifies the life of a drone pilot.

Registration

If you are wondering where you can fly your drone, it depends largely on registration. All drones above a certain size must be registered with the FAA. This process is relatively painless but does necessitate the entry of the drone’s serial number.

Repair Issues

If you are repairing or maintaining your drone, particularly when it is still under warranty, you will need that serial number to give to the refurbishment center or the original manufacturer. In other words, once you find this serial number keep it handy. You’ll need it, especially if your drone lands in the water. That said, you can compare the DJI Mavic 2 vs Mavic 3 in case you need an upgrade.

F.A.Q.S

What is a serial number?

An aircraft serial number is a unique set of 14 to 20 numbers that identify the drone, be it Mavic Mini, Phantom 3 SE, or another model.


Why do I need to know the serial number of my drone?

It is primarily for registration. If you fly an unregistered drone, it opens you up to legal issues. Though the aircraft serial number is also useful for repairs.


How to register your drone?

Registration is conducted via the FAA on their official web portal. Make sure to have that aircraft serial number ready, your make and model (Mavic Mini, etc.), and other pertinent information.


STAT: All drones must be registered, except those that weigh 0.55 pounds or less (less than 250 grams) and are flown exclusively under the Exception for Recreational Flyers. (source)

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