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How often should I tune my piano?

Dear Piano Lady — how often should I tune my piano?  Out of tune in New Hamburg


Dear Out of Tune: The answer is once a year is good; twice a year is better.  The piano is, in a way, a “living” thing.  It reacts to changing relative humidity conditions and temperature fluctuations.  A much more experienced technician answered this question, rather glibly — “daily”.  Think of your piano tuning as the oil change.  It is something you do on a regular basis and the person doing the regular maintenance may see something minor (that could turn into something major) and can “catch” it, so to speak, before it becomes a bigger problem.  Good piano technicians will make minor adjustments to the action of the piano while doing a regular tuning that will keep your piano in top working condition.


The corollary to this question is should I tune the piano if it is moved.  If you are moving the piano across the room, and you do it carefully, the answer is probably not.  If however, you cart the piano out your door, put it on a truck an drive it around town, then most certainly the piano will required a tuning.  Pianos are amazingly finicky things given how heavy they are.  Remember that you should wait 2 to 3 weeks when the piano is in its new location before tuning.  It needs to acclimate to its new home.


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A piano professor at the University of South Florida uses a working grand piano as a kitchen table!

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