The airworthiness directive asked airlines to inspect a specific part of the aircraft that could lead to a total loss of the plane. The inspections will focus on pins that attach the horizontal stabilizers to the fuselage.
"We are issuing this AD to prevent premature failure of the attach pins, which could cause reduced structural integrity of the horizontal stabilizer to fuselage attachment, resulting in loss of control of the airplane," the FAA said in the directive.
The affected models include the 737-600, -700, -700C, -800, -900, and -900ER series airplanes.
The order is not a grounding. It does not require airlines to perform the inspections right away.
The 737 is the most widely used jetliner, flown by carriers around the world.