Although we hesitate to ‘encourage’ piano storage instead of piano playing, we realize there may be a time in your life when you have no other choice. Of course, it’s always best to ask a friend or family member who might enjoy playing it to ‘store’ your piano. But if that’s not an option, learn other steps about how to store a piano without damaging your precious instrument, and why you should be concerned anyhow.
How Can Storing a Piano Cause Harm?
If you’ve purchased a piano before, you may already know that you should keep it in an ideal temperature and relative humidity level (42%) to maintain its value and condition. You should also keep it away from direct sunlight, vents, fireplaces, windows or outside walls where it will endure extreme swings in temperature or humidity.
But what can the humidity and heat or cold extremes do to your piano?
Swelling and shrinking of your piano’s soundboard is the most noticeable and immediate effect of humidity change, according to Piano Technicians Guild. But other damage may be done.
- Your piano may go out of tune sooner.
- The wool cloth in the piano action may deteriorate.
- Hard woods of your piano may warp.
- Your piano’s finish might diminish.
Obviously, damage from humidity or extreme temperatures can impact the life and value of your piano. Granted, these conditions may not impact digital pianos like the popular Kawai CN34 as much since they don’t typically contain the same wooden parts as an acoustic piano. But humidity can still wreak havoc on your electrical instrument too.
So if you have to do it temporarily, how can you store a piano without harming it?
How to Store a Piano Properly
Ideally, find a piano storage facility that offers humidity and temperature control year round, and that keeps dust to a minimum. Of course, the floor should never allow water leakage but should provide a level surface.
If you have to choose between a warmer or cooler place, choose cooler. But you should not suddenly move your piano that’s been kept in a damp or unheated area for years to a dry, heated area. This can cause your piano to deteriorate quickly.
Whether storing a piano at a facility or in another home:
- Clean and polish your piano thoroughly.
- Cover the keys with a cloth and close the lid to keep dust out.
- Put blankets around your piano to protect it during the move.
- Place a protective cover over your entire piano and blanket ensemble.
- Hire piano moving professionals with proper background checks and insurance.
Serious destruction can be done while moving your piano, too. Your piano should be kept level and moved with proper equipment. That’s why it’s best to hire piano moving specialists—to move your instrument with as much care and respect as possible.
Remember, it’s best to keep your piano in play, if you can find a relative or friend to temporarily keep it for you. But if you have to put into storage, take these steps about how to store a piano properly so you can still get a lifetime of joy from it!
And if you’re planning a move, be sure to hire a professional. Call Lacefield Music to guarantee your piano’s protection!