Piano Care Tips

Here are seven of the most important piano care tips every piano owner needs to know to gain the most enjoyment from their beloved instrument. To extend the life of your piano, continue to heed these important reminders:

1) Keep your piano tuned on a regular basis. Piano manufacturers recommend four (4) initial tunings during the first year in service, and two (2) times per year thereafter.

A piano’s pitch falls every year due to the swelling and contraction of its soundboard.

The more consistently a piano is tuned to A=440hz [international pitch standard] the more your piano will stay in tune year round.

2) Place your piano against an inner wall, and away from sunlight, moisture, and air currents.

Sunlight fades, warps, and cracks your piano's finish.

Moisture destroys metal components (strings, tuning pins, action), leading to rust, corrosion, and deterioration.

Air currents (vents, windows, doors, etc.) lead to the piano's wood (soundboard, bridges, keys, case) drying out, which leads to cracking and wear. 

3) Maintain your piano’s exterior. Regularly wipe dust from the piano’s surface with a clean dusting cloth. Keys may be cleaned with a lightly dampened cloth, completely wrung out. Keep liquids away from your piano including drinks, flower vases, fish bowls, and silicone furniture polish sprays.

4) Do not touch the inner workings of your piano. The action, strings, soundboard, and other internal components should be left to a qualified piano technician to clean and service. Do not perform any repairs on your own, and resist the urge to clean inside of your piano.

5) Try to maintain a fairly consistent temperature and humidity level inside of the room where your piano is placed. Do not place your piano in direct sunlight. This wears on the finish, and can cut down the life of your piano by decades. Most pianos are meant to thrive in an environment of 42% relative humidity.

Investing in a Dampp Chaser Humidity Control System (for pennies a day) can add years of life to your piano, by helping to stabilize your piano’s humidity levels year round, thus keeping your piano “in tune”.

6) Play your piano regularly. You’ll receive more enjoyment from it, and will be able to notice smaller problems before they escalate into much larger problems later on. You will also reach your musical potential much faster by regular practice.

7) Use only a professional piano mover to move your piano. Moving a piano on your own could cause great to harm to yourself, your piano, and to others around you. Hire a professional mover who has the tools, the knowledge, not to mention the insurance, to transport your piano from one place to another.

8) Stay in contact with your piano technician 2-3 times per year.

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These piano care tips can add years of life to your piano, and life to those years. Heeding these important reminders will result in an exceptional instrument of durable quality and will avoid the cost of any unnecessary repairs.

Keeping your piano tuned and serviced on a regular basis will give you and your family (1) great enjoyment year after year, will (2) extend the life of your piano, and will (3) avoid unnecessary damage to your prized instrument.


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PIANIST Magazine August/September 2023 - Issue 133

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