Archive for the 'Location and Moving' Category

Piano placement is a concern of most piano owners. A few basic rules need to observe when deciding where to place the piano in your home. In order to decide the best place to position your piano, you need to know where NOT to put it. Pianos are sensitive to their environments (temperature and humidity). A little thought to its location will help to protect your piano for years to come.

About 70% of your piano is wood, which even though it has been carefully selected and dried, is still “alive,” so to speak. It’s very important to achieve a constant temperature. Constant fluctuation in humidity is definitely bad for your piano’s health. This causes many problems for your piano including: Inconsistency stay in tune, sluggish and sticking keys, slow hammers and dampers, swelling key lead and expanding felts. This excessive humidity can even cause tuning pins, bridge pins and strings to rust.

Exposure to direct sunlight coming through a window can be a problem for your piano. Apart from disturbing the humidity level in your piano, direct sunshine is the cause of another serious issue, will bleach the wood and ruin the piano’s finish and it will cause fluctuations and instability in the piano leading to more frequent tuning. Solution: keep your piano away from windows that let sunlight through, or using sheer curtains on the windows.

Keep your piano as far away from a radiator, stove, or electric heater as possible. The heat will ruin the piano by drying out the glue used in the case and action.

Adhere to the following recommendation which will help you minimize wear and tear and help you keep your piano in optimum condition.

  • Locate your piano against an inside wall.
  • Keep your piano out of direct sunlight.
  • Keep your piano away from drafts, heat sources and air conditioning vents.
  • Keep your piano as far as possible from any fireplace or wood-burning stove. (Fire sucks moisture out of the air and your piano will have cracked soundboard)
  • Inconsistency in environment; like open kitchen, laundry room, bathroom.

To summarize
Ideally, a piano should be kept in a room with temperature around 70°( ± 5°) and relative humidity factor around 50% (±5%). The exact temperature and humidity is not as important as keeping as little fluctuation as possible. Excessive dryness and extreme humidity are both harmful to the piano.

Excessive dryness reduces the moisture content of the soundboard and cabinet components, and can weaken the glue joints of the pinblock.

Dampness can cause rust to form on the strings, swelling to the soundboard and action parts, which then causes sluggish and/or sticking keys.

If you can’t find a suitable location, have a climate control system installed in the instrument itself. These units can greatly improve tuning stability and other climate-related problems where it’s not practical to control the environment of the entire house.

A friend of mine ring me up this morning, she is looking for a reasonable used upright piano. Finally after months her son been practicing his piano lesson on a digital piano. Beside her son’s piano teacher has been telling her since the first day of class to get a piano for her son before she’ll stop teaching him. Since the digital piano is place in a room, my friend decided to put the piano to the same location but the problem is, the room is actually her son’s bedroom, beside a bed and wardrobe it have a TV set, a desktop personal computer and study table…imagine this?

So as the title say, Is bedroom a good place to put your piano been brought up. Is it necessary to have a separate practice room? Sometimes after hearing your child hit bad key after bad key, you might be tempted to put it on the beach, but sand isn’t really good for the hammers and strings.

Some people might think they prefer to have the piano in another room from the normal family activity. That could mean a spare bedroom. But let’s think this through. When a child is sent to the spare bedroom, they feel like they are being banished to North Pole. They may feel very lonely, and there’s no one around to hear what their latest pieces are. What fun to have your parents exclaim with excitement and joy on how you have progressed.

Today, most people tend to separate immediately upon entering the house, off to watch TV or play video games, work on the computer, or go to their individual rooms to listen to music. There’s very little family interaction.

When the piano is in the main room of the house, such as a living room or family room, there might be sacrifices to be made, especially in a small house or large family. The person that is practicing needs some quiet, so maybe other family members can do homework or read. If a child feels like he or she is disrupting a parent’s desire for the news or a football game, they might decide they don’t “like” the piano anymore.

What happens when grandma and grandpa come over and want to hear the latest accomplishment? Is everyone going to trek to the bedroom together to hear the song? How long will they stay there if it’s an uncomfortable room?

If the piano is in a main room, the child is more likely to say, “do you want to hear what I can do?” Maybe they will continue to play more than one piece. I remember during my childhood time, a friend of mine, her piano was in the living room. Of course, life was very different then, there weren’t on the go so much, and parents didn’t think twice about adjusting their schedule to fit their children activities. Either one of her parents would always ask her to play for her aunts and uncles, friends and neighbors. Sometimes on festive holidays, they sang around the piano, and she was the star of the day. The bad notes were ignored, and there was plenty of bonding and laughter.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, do what’s right for your family and the way you live, but you won’t be sorry if you make the effort to bring the piano into the family area. Watching your offspring grow to delight in making music is well worth the price.

It’s understandable that you might not want to hire a mover just to move a piano around a room, but these small moves can be surprisingly dangerous. With both grands and verticals, it’s primarily the legs you want to watch out for. Breaking a leg on a vertical may just be an inconvenience, but on a grand it can be disastrous. For example, a leg could get caught on an uneven floor or the grate of a heating duct and come crashing to the floor, breaking the legs as well as the pedal lyre.

To safely move your home piano to a new spot in the room, here are some tips:

Grands
If the piano is sitting on carpeting, or if the floor has any obstacles like thresholds, furnace grates, etc., you need to be very careful to avoid straining the legs. First lower the lid. Then position three people around the piano, one near each leg. (Remove belt buckles, rings, etc. that could scratch the piano’s finish.) It’s not necessary to lift the piano off the floor, but just to take some weight off the casters so they will roll more easily. Move the piano slowly, a few inches at a time. Caution: Never roll a caster over any bump in the floor; always lift it over, one leg at a time, using extra help.

Uprights
The same cautions for grands apply here. At least 2 people should always move a vertical piano. Smaller, apartment sized verticals with free-standing legs should have their legs protected by lifting or tilting the piano back ever so slightly while moving. But remember that most of the weight of the piano is in its back, so be sure you have a firm grip on it and don’t tilt so far that the piano is in danger of falling over. Larger verticals and smaller ones without legs can simply be rolled, although this may be hard to do on carpeting. Piano casters can sometimes get stuck unexpectedly, so move slowly with one person on each end of the piano. When making turns, keep the back of the piano on the inside of the turn. And be careful not to push a stubborn vertical piano over your helper’s foot!

Expert Advice: Save yourself the above trouble, hire a professional piano movers. Why risk personal injury and damage to your instrument and home by attempting to move an instrument yourself. Often when it comes to moving a piano, the first thoughts are; can save a lot of money by doing it yourself with getting some friends together to muscle out your piano.

Just think, you can escape injury to yourself and others who you may have talked into helping to do a move that no one knows, for sure, how to proceed. And, it won’t be necessary for you to try fixing holes in the wall or scratches on the floor because of unexpected bumps or unintentional dragging of a heavy instrument across easily marred floors.

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