SAFEGUARD YOUR INVESTMENT
Keeping your piano tuned will increase your joy of playing!
Having your piano tuned on a regular schedule by a professional piano tuner will protect your investment, make the piano sound better and provide you with an instrument you enjoy playing.
Frequently asked questions about tuning:
1. How often should I have my piano tuned?
It is wise to have your piano tuned at least twice a year and some owners tuner their pianos more often than that!
2. Why do pianos go out of tune?
Larry Fine, author of The Piano Book: Buying & Owning a New or Used Piano, gives the best answer to this question:
"By far, the most important factor causing pianos to go out of tune is the change in humidity from season to season that occurs in most temperate climates, affecting all pianos, good and bad, new and old, played and unplayed. The soundboard, glued down around its perimeter and bellied like a diaphragm in the center, swells up with moisture in the humid season and pushes up on the strings via the bridges on which the strings rest. This causes the strings to be stretched at a higher tension, raising their pitch. In the dry season, the opposite happens. The soundboard releases its moisture to the air and subsides, releasing the pressure on the strings, which then fall in pitch. Unfortunately, the strings don't rise and fall in pitch by exactly the same amount at the same time. The process is more random than that, with the result that the strings no longer sound in harmony with one another and need tuning." (Fine, Larry. The Piano Book: Buying & Owning A New or Used Piano. Boston: Brookside Press, 4th ed., 2002)
As a practical tuning hint, notice how your piano sounds at different hours of the day. How can it sound so badly out of tune in the morning, and so beautifully in tune in the afternoon? Keep a written or mental "log," and you'll notice that your piano comes into "tune" as your room warms to its average temperature. For the best tuning job, set your thermostat and have your room at its average temperature in time for your piano technician to begin tuning ― never on a cold morning before the furnace has done its job, or on an unusually hot afternoon if you don’t have air conditioning.
3. Is it true that pianos should never be placed on an outside wall?
In historic homes with single wall construction and drafty single-pane windows, keeping the piano away from an outside wall is and was good advice. Seventy-five years ago, pianos were placed in “music-parlors” with massive wooden sliding doors that were kept closed because there was no central heat ― just a fireplace in each room. Today’s homes are built with central heating/air conditioning, adequate insulation, and double-pane-insulated windows that are rated to prevent Ultra Violet rays from bleaching furniture and ruining drapes. The outside wall factor is no longer important in most cases. However, never place your piano near a fireplace, or stove, or position it over or near a heating or air-conditioning duct.
Piano Prep at Classic Pianos
A DEDICATED CREW WITH A PASSION FOR THEIR WORK
Watch this fun and informative “inside the shop” video regarding tuning and preparation:
Need a Technician?
There are many fine piano technicians serving the Pacific Northwest. Please feel free to give us a call to see if we know one in your area: (425) 462-1888