All pianos require tender, loving care, but it is not a simple chore because improper maintenance can easily harm your priceless instrument. As a result, it is critical to understand a few basic guidelines and things that you, as a piano owner, can do for your piano that will not only extend its life but also save you money in the long run.
Never Drink or Eat Food Around the Piano
To keep your piano in good condition and ensure its longevity, it’s best to establish a rule: Food and drinks must be strictly kept off the piano at all times, whether cold or hot. If you do want to have a snack or drink while playing or practising, make sure to do so in a separate area away from the piano to minimise the risk of damage. Because of the sugar and other chemicals, alcoholic drinks, hot drinks, and spirits do the most damage. However, even plain water can cause significant harm and necessitate costly repairs. We have repaired a lot of water-damaged pianos.
Do Not Decorate the Piano With Household Items
Try to avoid placing anything on your upright or grand piano that may scratch the wood surface. While we don’t recommend it, many people choose to place fresh flowers on the top of their upright piano. Although they look beautiful and attractive, they pose some risks that you should be aware of. Fresh flowers require water, which puts your piano at serious risk. Another risk is that some flowers, such as lilies, release pollen, which is not piano-friendly.
If you have to place flowers on the top of your upright piano, then consider using artificial flowers, and always use a coaster or felt cloth for the vase. The image above with the Christmas decor on top of the piano is a perfect example of what to avoid. Always use cloth felt to protect the wood and finish.
Keeping the Piano Free From Dust
Stay on top of dust in the room in which the piano is kept because even dust can scratch the piano. Dust can have several negative effects on a piano over time, impacting its sound quality, performance, appearance, and overall condition. Vacuum the room regularly, and use a soft cloth for dusting the furniture and the piano itself. When not in use, cover the piano with a cloth to protect the keys or perhaps the entire instrument.
Remember that prevention is key—taking proactive steps to reduce dust accumulation around your piano and maintaining a clean environment can go a long way in preserving the instrument’s sound quality, performance, and appearance over the years.
Keep the Piano in a Stable Climate
Maintaining consistent temperatures and humidity levels around a piano is extremely important. Pianos are delicate instruments, and variations in these factors can cause serious damage to the instrument.
20 degrees Celsius and 42 percent relative humidity are the optimal conditions for a piano. Many houses in London were built many decades ago and have poor ventilation, which leads to high humidity, which causes mould throughout the house and even inside your piano.
If your home has one or more walls that are susceptible to mould growth, then you most likely have high humidity levels. If this is the case, a good dehumidifier, such as the Meaco DD8L Zambezi, should be used. Consider using a desiccant dehumidifier rather than a compressor because they work better during the warmer months of the year, and mould growth is not caused by cold; it is caused by water in the air.
Pianos Need to Be Played Regularly
Regular use of the instrument keeps it in good working condition and makes it easier to spot problems. It is recommended to play your piano at least once a week. Even a few minutes is better than none. Tip: You do not need someone who knows how to play the piano; you can simply ask anyone in the family or household to press the keys multiple times in a piano-friendly and uniformed way from left to right. As you consider playing, you might want to note these important steps to guide you.
Use a Good Professional Piano Tuner
Always opt to use a qualified and highly skilled piano tuner! Do some piano company research to find one that is very reputable. Generally, a good company will offer a vast range of pianos services such as tuning, repairs, restoration, repairs and servicing. Always check out their accreditations and check their Google reviews before hiring them. Also consider regular maintenance and servicing as it can prevent expensive repairs in the future. Most grand and upright manufacturers recommend servicing at least two to four times a year.